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Todd Parker Todd Parker
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Ask Todd Parker - September 4, 2013

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Todd Parker Todd Parker

Dear Todd Parker,

I'm about to start my second year of college and it seems like everyone in the world is asking me what I want to major in. My parents, my friends and my advisor have all been asking me what course of study I'm going to follow.

How the hell should I know? I'm 19. Am I really supposed to know what I want to do with the rest of my life? It feels like this is the biggest decision I'll ever make and I don't have a clue. I spent my freshman year taking a bunch of required classes, but there wasn't anything that inspired me or anything. None of them were really terrible, either. I feel like I'm in pretty much the same boat as I was when I started.

According to everyone I've talked to, I really need to decide soon. I don't know what to do. I don't want to get stuck doing something that I'll hate, but I'm also afraid that I'll wind up with a degree that won't do me any good.

Any advice?

Sad Sophomore

Dear Sad,

Ah, the rite of passage that is the declaration of a major.

All right, pal. First of all, stop thinking that your apprehension is a bad thing. It isn't. You're still just a kid; you're supposed to have these kinds of concerns. Discovering what's out there is what college is supposed to be for. It might not seem like it, but you aren't the only one dealing with these questions. Plenty of your peers even the ones who have already declared a major are pooping their pants at the thought of the BIG BAD FUTURE.

I'm not going to tell you that it doesn't matter. It does. It just doesn't matter as much as you think. Your degree is just one more arrow in your quiver; you have plenty of skills and talents that will transcend that piece of paper, regardless of the words written on it.

However, I'm also not going to tell you to follow your bliss or any of that other bullcrap. Embracing your passion is fine, but if that's the path you're going to follow, you better be sure you're really passionate, because it's probably a choice you're going to have to defend to a lot of people.

You've still got time to dabble. The first couple of years of college are designed for you to be a dilettante. Keep trying new stuff. If there's something that you find remotely interesting, give it a whirl. The great thing about higher education is that you never know when that switch is going to flip and illuminate your path. You'll figure it out. Trust me.

So don't sweat it. Just go to class and keep the partying under control. The rest will take care of itself.

Last modified on Wednesday, 04 September 2013 09:23


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