As a freshman, I went into college somewhat knowing that I wanted to be a scientist or doctor. The kind of scientist or doctor who is able to communicate the hard-to-understand science information to absolutely anyone. I went to advising and met with different departments, and the consensus was that I needed to complete two programs, one degree within a science field and one within a communications field.
I'm now a senior majoring in biology and journalism with minors in physics and nanoscale science and technology.
These two majors are on pretty far opposite sides of the spectrum, if they are even on the same spectrum, and each semester I tend to ask myself the same eight questions.
1. “How do I prioritize everything?”
I wish I could tell you, but even after as many semesters as I have been here, I have no clue. I’m on that “work on what is due or upcoming first” schedule, which gets you a little bit ahead of barely brushing by, but there has to be a better way. Feel free to DM me suggestions.
2. “How do I respond to the ‘what’s your major’ question?”
I have a pre-rehearsed answer to the "what's your major?" question memorized, but that aspect of the question doesn't bother me. What makes me want to drop out of school all together are the faces people make, the responses people have and the body language people use, when I tell them my plan of study.
You know that feeling when you’re in a room of people singing you Happy Birthday and you don’t know what to do with your hands or face and you still have 30 more seconds of it? That is kind of how it feels, in a nutshell. Awkward, Awkward. Awkward.
Some people look at me with their jaw on the floor, while some people follow my response with a list of questions that I don’t necessarily have the answers to.
3. "Is it even possible to manage this?"
Probably not. I definitely don’t sleep enough, and there is something always needing to be done, but there are plenty of people who do it, so I can too, right?
4. “Can I keep drinking this much RedBull every single day?”
We all know the answer, but I tell myself yes.
There is no limit to RedBull or Starbucks. But, there are interest charges on the credit cards you use to purchase the RedBull and Starbucks, which will surely make up for the lack of limitation of the caffeinated beverages.
5. “Ok, so how do I read for each class without falling behind in any of them?”
Start early, take no days off, and cry often – I mean we always hear people telling us to “let it all out,” so crying every so often is fine, right?
6. “Wait, why did I want to double-major again?”
I actually have no idea anymore. It was a great idea on paper and as a freshman with big dreams and goals for herself, but the financial and mental cost of being a double major has prevented me from remembering why I wanted this in the first place. It’s honestly really weird to write that I wanted this because, at this moment in time, I want the furthest thing from it. What I really want is sleep and a job after college relevant to at least part of one of my degrees.
7. “Why didn’t I choose a second major that had at least SOME overlapping classes?”
Oh yeah, that’s right…I love science AND writing. Cool. Or, I just wanted to completely isolate myself from a social life, my friends, and any kind of family interactions because the second I turn in an article or submit something for journalism, you can count on the fact I’m behind in biochemistry and need like four extra weeks just to catch up.
'Go big or go home' applies here, right?
8. “WHEN IS GRADUATION?!”