I've Changed My Major Three Times In The Past Year

I Took An Intro Class To A Major I Thought I Would Love, But It Made Me Realize My True Purpose In Life

Halfway through the semester, I had failed three of the papers.

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If you ask any of my friends, they will be able to count all the times I changed my major on one hand. One thing stayed true though. I always knew I wanted to help people.

The summer of my senior year of high school, I fully believed I was going to go to college for nursing. The plan was ultimately to do ROTC, have that pay for my education, and become an Army Nurse. I thought my drive to help others was only through medicine. Med school itself never appealed to me, so nursing was my next best bet.

Going into my last year of high school, on the other hand, I completely lost interest in going into the military. It wasn't the lifestyle for me, and by forcing myself to do it, I would have been miserable. I then figured I could become an English major and follow my love to writing. Honestly, writing has always been a passion of mine since sixth grade, so I figured I could make a career out of it. Also, maybe I could motivate and help people through my writing, and eventually become a professional public speaker.

Yet, when the presidential election happened in 2016, I was fired up. I was angered that I couldn't voice my opinion on the direction our country should go in because I was 17. I was ready to make my voice be heard. That was when I knew how I could help people. I changed from applying as an English major to a Political Science major.

However, everything changed again once I came to college . I took an International Relations course, and absolutely loved it. It was a mandatory class for political science majors at Temple, but there wee also a lot of Global Studies majors in that class. I also loved taking a language, and finding out I would have the opportunity to take four semesters worth of a language rather than just two was a huge driving force. I also figured since I loved my IR class, it was a sign this was what I was meant to do.

Fast forward to the beginning of my sophomore year, and I entered the Global Studies track on the culture track. I was so excited, but that was also short lived.

I began this semester with the introduction class to Global Studies. I loved the two lessons we had within the security unit, but they were policy related. After those two lessons were finished within the first two weeks of classes, I found myself growing bored in the class. I grew more interested in the one political science class I decided to take this semester, which specialized in the operations of set up of the United Nations.

Halfway through the semester, I had failed three of the papers.

Now for me, any grade below a 80% causes me to panic. Plus, writing papers is my specialty. For any exam, I always do well on the written portion because I can fully explain myself and demonstrate I knew the material. When it comes to multiple choice, I panic. I always end up second guessing myself even when the answer is correct. It's just bad.

I stepped back and thought of why I could be doing so poorly. I spent countless hours completing the readings, weekly writings, and wrote a research paper I hardheartedly believed in. I actively took notes in class and participated in class discussions. I believed I was putting my 100% effort in, even if the tops were starting to be boring.

Talking to my professor and my academic adviser, we talked about my future career plans and what interests me, it all became clear pretty quickly.. I realized that my interest will always remain in Political Science, and that is honestly the best major that currently aligns with my career goals.

So after getting a confirmation email from my adviser when I made my decision that it was okay to switch back to poli sci, I withdrew from the credit. It didn't play into any of the required GenEd credits Temple requires you to take, and it didn't even carry over to the Political Science program.

Sure, I may now just be taking 13 credits, but I still have my internship and involved in my other internships. Next semester, I know I will be fully focused on my major because it really is what I want to do. I know this can possibly get me to law school, taking another master program following undergrad, or millions of other opportunities.

This is how I can help people by fighting for those who cannot have their voices be heard and making a better tomorrow.

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Stop Discourging Future Teachers

One day, you'll be thankful for us.
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“What do you want to be when you grow up?" It seems like this is the question we heard from the time we were able to talk. Our answers started out as whatever movie or action figure was popular that year. I personally was going to be Cinderella and shoot spider webs out of my wrists at the same time. The next phase was spent choosing something that we read about in a book or saw in movies. We were aspiring to be actors, skydivers, and astronauts.

After we realized NASA may not necessarily be interested in every eager 10-year-old, we went through the unknown stage. This chapter of life can last a year or for some, forever. I personally did not have a long “unknown" stage. I knew I was going to be a teacher, more specifically I knew I wanted to do elementary or special education. I come from a family of educators, so it was no surprise that at all the Thanksgiving and Christmas functions I had actually figured it out. The excitement of knowing what to do with the rest of my life quickly grew and then began to dwindle just as fast.

“Why?"

"Well, looks like you'll be broke all your life."

“That's a lot of paperwork."

“If I could go back and do it again, I wouldn't choose this."

These are just a few replies I have received. The unfortunate part is that many of those responses were from teachers themselves. I get it, you want to warn and prepare us for the road we are about to go down. I understand the stress it can take because I have been around it. The countless hours of grading, preparing, shopping for the classroom, etc. all takes time. I can understand how it would get tiresome and seem redundant. The feeling a teacher has when the principal schedules yet another faculty meeting to talk an hour on what could've been stated in an email… the frustration they experience when a few students seem uncontrollable… the days they feel inadequate and unseen… the sadness they feel when they realize the student with no supplies comes from a broken home… I think it is safe to say that most teachers are some of the toughest, most compassionate and hardworking people in this world.

Someone has to be brave enough to sacrifice their time with their families to spend time with yours. They have to be willing to provide for the kids that go without and have a passion to spread knowledge to those who will one day be leading this country. This is the reason I encourage others to stop telling us not to go for it.

Stop saying we won't make money because we know. Stop saying we will regret it, because if we are making a difference, then we won't. Stop telling us we are wasting our time, when one day we will be touching hearts.

Tell us to be great, and then wish us good luck. Tell us that our passion to help and guide kids will not go unnoticed. Tell us that we are bold for trying, but do not tell us to change our minds.

Teachers light the path for doctors, police officers, firefighters, politicians, nurses, etc. Teachers are pillars of society. I think I speak for most of us when I say that we seek to change a life or two, so encourage us or sit back and watch us go for it anyways.

Cover Image Credit: Kathryn Huffman

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14 Honest College Things The Class Of 2023 Needs To Know ~Before~ Fall Semester

Sit down, be humble.

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To The Class of 2023,

Before you start your college career, please know:

1. Nobody...and I mean nobody gives a shit about your AP Calculus scores.

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" I got a 5 in Calc AB AND BC, a 5 in AP Literature, awh but I only got a 4 in AP Chem"

2. THE SAME GOES FOR YOUR SAT/ACT SCORES + nobody will know what you're talking about because they changed the test like 10 times since.

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3. College 8 AMs are not the same as your 0 period orchestra class in 12th grade.

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4. You're going to get rejected from a lot of clubs and that does not make you a failure.

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5. If you do get into your clubs, make sure not to overwhelm or overcommit yourself.

visual representation of what it looks like when you join too many clubs

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6. It's OK to realize that you don't want to be pre-med or you want to change majors.

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7. There will ALWAYS ALWAYS be someone who's doing better than you at something but that doesn't mean you're behind.

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8. "I'm a freshman but sophomore standin-" No, you don't have to clarify that, you'll sound like an asshole.

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9. You may get your first ever B-, C+ or even D OR EVEN A W in your life. College is meant to teach you how to cope with failure.

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10. Go beyond your comfort zone. Join a theatre club if you're afraid of public speaking. Join an animal rescue club if you're afraid of animals. College is learning more about yourself.

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11. Scholarships do exist. APPLY APPLY APPLY.

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12. Don't try to brag about all the stuff you did in high school, you'll just sound like a weenie hut jr. scout

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13. Understand and be sensitive to the fact that everybody around you has a different experience and story of getting to university.

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14. You're going to be exposed to people with different opinions and views, don't fight them. Instead, try to explain your perspective and listen to their reasoning as well.

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