“So what’re you majoring in?”

Do I lie? Do I speak the truth? Do I say that I’m not sure?

I’m thinking of transferring to the Business School and double majoring in something. I’m also interested in journalism, but I can’t do both. I’m actually not sure I want to do, either. I really just want to become an event planner, but I’m passionate about other things, too.

“So what’re you majoring in?”

Do I lie? Do I speak the truth? Do I say that I’m not sure?

I’m probably going into the medical field because my parents want me to. It’s the way it is in our family. So I’m on the pre-med track right now, but I’m actually miserable and it’s only my first semester.

“So what’re you majoring in?”

Do I lie? Do I speak the truth? Do I say that I’m not sure?

I’m going to major in whatever field is going to pay me the most. So right now, my options are computer science, supply chain management, or medical school.

“So what’re you majoring in?”

It's the most nerve-racking question college freshmen are asked hundreds of times within a semester. Between family, friends, colleagues, professors, club members, job interviewers, just about everyone really, it is beyond overwhelming to be able to affirmatively, yet genuinely answer this question. I turn into a robot when I’m asked this question. My answer is systematically implanted in me.

“Right now I’m undecided. I actually wanted to double major in Marketing and Journalism and Media Studies, but the Dean I spoke with said I couldn’t do that. Now, I’m thinking about double majoring in Marketing and maybe Supply Chain and minoring in Journalism and Media Studies.”

Every single time, I repeat those exact words.

Three different responses are bound to occur: (1) By the way, it’s OK if you don’t know what you want to major in yet, (2) You should probably figure your track out for certain and follow through with it, so you don’t fall behind (don’t listen to the people that tell you to take your time), (3) Oh OK, good luck in whatever it is you decide to do, just make sure you’re exploring your options, you know?

I have accustomed myself to block out all of these responses. Why? Because they are completely useless. You see, as a college freshman, I don’t need anyone commenting on my doubts. I need someone to help me choose the major I should pursue. I need someone to reassure me that there is a major for my passion, for the career I want to have.

Day in and day out, college freshmen naively choose a major for ALL the wrong reasons. And then we receive stress on top of that failure, and a sprinkle of “you probably won’t like your classes anyways, you just have to deal” dilemma. At that point, how is a college freshman expected to merrily start off a minimum of a 4-year process with that kind of pressure? You can’t.

To all my fellow college freshmen who are on the same boat as I am, trying to figure out a path that’s most fit, trying to adapt to a new style of education, trying to graduate in a positive mental state, do your research. Pick something that you will not regret pursuing so that when you’re asked “So what’re you majoring in?” you don’t have to lie. You have the ability to genuinely answer the question. I promise that the research is worth the time.