Tuesday, November 13, 2012

major decisions

Over the summer I finally decided what I want to do with my life.

Okay.  False.  I still have no idea what I want to do with life...but I at least was able to come to a decision as to what major to declare.  It was something I had struggled with for a long time.  All growing up, junior high and high school counselors would look at my grades and say, "You can be anything you want to be!" "With grades like those, you will succeed in any direction you choose to take!"

Well...as an indecisive person that was not news I loved hearing.  I did like hearing I was "smart," but I hated the lack of direction.  I liked and disliked everything at the same time.  I didn't really have a passion for any particular subject that screamed to me, "Go this way!  Pick me!"

So once I got to college I remained undeclared.  I took a variety of classes- psychology, chemistry, Spanish, English, computer science, sociology, and so much more.  There was only one area that I noticed a pattern in the classes I took.  I kept taking classes from the FCHD (family, consumer, and human development) department.  I loved those classes.  I still do.  Classes about families, marriages, development of the human body, finances...they were all my favorites.  I considered taking a similar route to these courses and become a FCSE (family and consumer science education) major.  I thought it could be super cool to be a junior high or high school teacher and teach the "fun" classes like foods, sewing, and interior design...and even the "not fun" ones like financial literacy.  I found something I liked.  It should be simple enough to declare my major, right?

Wrong.  Something about it just never felt "right" to declare.  I didn't know how to use it to help me in the workforce, except becoming a teacher.  I can see all the applicable ways in my personal life...but professionally I felt very limited.  It confused and frustrated me.  I couldn't seem to find anything that I felt okay about pursuing.

And as more and more time passed me by, the more it stressed me out and worried me.  The topic was a pretty sensitive one at the time.  Any time anyone would bring the subject of my major up (and was either really close to me personally...or just really pressed it)  I would always end up with tears in my eyes.  Thoughts would always come: "Why can't I figure out what I want to do with my life?"  "Why can everyone else come to a decision, but I can't?"  "Why does this not feel 'right' for me...yet it's 'right' for bunches of other people?"  "I'm just wasting my time in school.  I should just drop out.  Except that would be stupid.  My parents would kill me...and I wouldn't be doing anything better with my time."  "What's wrong with me?"

This summer my mom pointed out to me what's been sitting in front of my face for the longest time.  Seriously.  The.  Longest. Time.  It's something I've spent a good chunk {aka 6 years} of my life doing.

"You love your job.  Why don't you declare something that relates?"

I thought about it.  And it was obvious....and I had been completely oblivious to it the whole time.

With the help of my mom, I decided Human Resources would be an awesome fit for my life.  My job already entailed some aspects of it, and the other ones seemed like stuff I'd be able to handle.

Step 1:  Call Utah State's Advising Center and set up an appointment.  Knowing I didn't have the pre-requisites done, I made it with an "undeclared, business" adviser.

Step 2:  Drive to Logan with Eryka.  Park.  Go to the TSC and meet with said adviser.

Step 3:  Walk into her office.  Right off the bat she says, "So, the note about your appointment says you're interested in majoring in Human Resources.  We actually stopped offering that major for bachelor's degrees" and listed multiple reasons why.  "Here are other business degrees you could major in, and then have HR as your minor.  Oh.  And really you don't want to be meeting with me, you want to set up an appointment to meet with a business adviser and officially declare a major."  Me:  "What?  I don't have the pre-reqs done."  Adviser: "If your GPA is above *this level* (3.95 maybe?)  you can declare earlier.  You have a 3.96."  Yada yada yada...I leave her office.

Step 4:  Find Eryka.  Say "Sorry...I'm not done yet.  UGH."  And hurry my behind over to the business building.  We wander for a minute until we can find their advisement office.  I patiently stand in front of the counter while Office Lady is on the phone...and wait and wait.  Until somebody else notices me and asks how she can help me.  "Oh.  You want to talk to Paige.  She's out of town until next week."  Totally not music to my ears.  "But, here...I can declare your major for you."

So...I'm getting a BS in BA.  I wish that stood for a B.S. degree in Bad A**-ery...but unfortunately it doesn't.  Here's to a Bachelors of Science in Business Administration.  Totally not as cool.

Step 5:  Go eat lunch with Eryka and Elise.  Then check out Violet Hill Boutique's new digs in the mall.  You wouldn't think this is such a necessary step...but it is.

The next week I made another appointment to talk to a *real* adviser and got my life sorted out.  I didn't feel like she helped me a whole lot...but it's still good to talk to someone who knows what they're talking about.  I thought we'd get my schedule all hammered out in her office and officially registered for classes.  Instead, she just said "here ya go" with a list of stuff, answered a few questions, but ultimately, didn't do a whole lot that I wouldn't be able to figure out on my own.

I still have no idea what I'm going to do with my degree, but I know it'll be useful in the long run.  All I know is that, at least for now, it feels "right" and that I actually feel like I'm working toward something.  I also know that I'm not 100% obligated to hold fast to this.  I'm still allowed to change my mind.  I don't have to have all the answers now...but I'm glad I at least have some of them :)

1 comment:

  1. Ahhhh....I can so relate to this. I had the HARDEST time picking a major. When I transferred to BYU I was a Speech pathology major. I never LOVED it, but I rationalized that not everyone loves everything about their major (wrong!). In the back of my mind I always thought about teaching, but el ed seemed wrong as did many other majors. Then the summer before my senior year ...I passed by this major fair and I found Special Ed. I changed my major, I didn't look back, and I loved every minute of my program. It felt right, it was really hard, but ohhh I learned so much.

    This post makes me so happy! I'm glad you feel resolved and you are such a smarty-pants so you can switch your major just like that.


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