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Majors don't determine careers!

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Did you know that that Jon Stewart majored in psychology?  Mick Jagger majored in economics?  Elizabeth Warren  majored in audiology and speech pathology?  

Teaching and nursing majors are directly related to career options, but most majors are not.  It's unlikely that the major you choose will dictate your career or narrow your career choices for the future. First and second year students change majors frequently, and many times back into a choice.  Often there is a lurking aprehension that they have picked the wrong major and messed up their chances for a good career.  

Keep in mind that more than anything, employers are looking for soft skills, rather than specific knowledge. These transferable qualities and skills, such as, problem solving, critical thinking, team-building and sensitivity to others, can be developed in any major. The important thing is that you really enjoy what you are learning and that your natural abilities align with your major. 

What about your first job?  It might be "related" to your major, but many times is not . The reality is that your first job is not a "do or die" matter, but rather a jumping off point for future exploration and discovery. Most graduates don't really start to figure out their direction until they are employed and even then it may take more than one job to figure out where there is a good fit for their interests and skills.  

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the average job tenure of 25 to 34 year olds in 2012 was 3.2 years .  Keep in mind that it's very common for professionals to change careers a number of times. There will likely be many bends in the road as you navigate your career path, and unlikely opportunties will arise.  Your primary goal should be to position yourself to start your first job after college where there is a good fit with your interersts and strengths, and an opportunity to grow. 

For ideas on the wide range of options you have with any major, review What Can I do With this Major? on the CEC website.  It is a helpful resource that provides detailed employment information for over 75 different majors, including potential areas of employment, types of employers and occupations, and strategies to pursue to obtain those jobs.  And there are many more options.  Majors don't determine careers!  Contact the CEC to set up an appointment with a career coach.  We're here to help!