Major-Shaming, You Should Be Ashamed
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Student Life

Major-Shaming, You Should Be Ashamed

A long-standing criticism that needs to end.

Major-Shaming, You Should Be Ashamed

Major-shaming—it's an epidemic. When college students are asked the dreaded question, "What's your major?", the reaction to their response is frustrating. Parents and students alike love to ask, "What are you going to do with that?" Sometimes people are met with positivity, but an overwhelming number of people are looked down upon based on their area of interest. Major-shaming is when another person makes comments or insinuations that one program is superior to another. This isn't a new idea and it certainly is prevalent in today's culture, but recognizing it and establishing a new protocol could end major-shaming altogether.

What is Major-Shaming?

Any current or former college student can attest to the competition between majors and programs. I'm sure you've talked badly about another major, comparing it to your own. Telling a Business major that their classes are so much easier than yours just because they don't have a four-hour lab is not constructive. Asking an Education major if they do anything besides arts and crafts discourages the future educators of America. Asking a Psychology major if they want to be poor for the rest of their lives is not only unnecessary, but downright rude. Sure, you may say these passing comments as a joke, but there is some underlying truth to what you are saying. There is no valid way to compare different majors, and doing so would be counterproductive.

How does it affect people?

Major-shaming can affect people in many ways. Saying that you're better than someone else based purely on the field you're in is absurd. Just because you don't have an exam each week does not mean that the classes you are taking are not difficult. Upper-level education in any program is supposed to prepare students for the real world. By telling someone they are not pursuing a "good enough" career, you could cause real problems with their education. Someone could switch majors to something they are not passionate about just because they didn't get support. This person will spend the rest of their life miserable because they didn't feel as if they could go for what they really care about.

What can we do to send Major-Shaming?

When people pick a major, they are attempting to find their passion. When we put other people down based on their interests and talents, we are creating a negative attitude around education. Instead of putting people down for following a passion different from yours, you should be supportive and try to understand why this area interests them so much. You can negatively impact the thoughts they have around their own major, the interest they have chosen to pursue. The bottom line is to be supportive. Understand that everyone has different skills and talents that make them unique. By telling someone they aren't smart enough to be Pre-Med, you could be telling a future cancer-curing researcher they aren't good enough.

It's important to remember that, regardless of what you do, people will question your actions. Staying strong in your convictions and choosing the path that is best for you is the best way to combat major-shaming. Don't let others' doubt to get to you. Prove them wrong and show them how to pursue their passion.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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