Choosing a major is difficult because it means a student has to disregard other majors to get one, according to several BYU-Hawaii students.
Ben Bailey, a BYU PhD graduate intern-student working in the BYUH Counseling Services office, said there were many factors or reasons for students being unsure about which major to choose. “They are really worried that what they end up studying is going to be what they end up having a career in,” he said, though he added that students don’t always end up in a career related to their major.
Mion Tanaka, a freshman from Japan with an undeclared major, said, “I feel rushed because this is my second semester, and my friends have already started taking major classes,” she said. “I’m taking GE classes to find what I want to major in, but I still can’t find it out.”
Best College USA says there are fours things to consider when choosing a major: seek out help, explore, be introspective, and be proactive.
Riley Weston, a sophomore from Oregon studying computer science, said he chose his major because he loved all his technology classes in high school. “My biggest advice for newer students would be to really put yourself back into high school and look at what you saw yourself leaning more toward. There was always one class that you really enjoyed more than the rest,” he said.
Ben Papeo, an alumni from Italy who graduated this year in psychology, said he read the book “Major Decisions” by President Henry B. Eyring while he attended LDS Business College. The book mentions the website mynextmove.org, so he said he visited the site and took an assessment test to find out what his interests were.
According to Papeo, students question how they can choose only one of several majors to pursue a specific career because it is more than likely that most students have various interests.
Carly Cortes, a senior from Michigan majoring in hospitality and tourism management and business management, encouraged students to seek answers from the Lord through prayer. “Just remember, he will only answer you if you’ve already done your research. I would suggest students look around and talk to people who are working with the degree you are interested in and talk to professors and ask what opportunities are out there.”
Cortes said what led her to BYUH was the HTM major, but as she took one HTM class that emphasized marketing, she began to like marketing more than her major and talked with her advisor to see if she could do both majors.
Papeo said, “Some people advise to pick only one subject and stick on that and keep the best one as a future career and a second thing as a hobby, but I don’t think this is necessarily true, because you might like two things exactly equally. You like them both to the point that you want to have them both. What I would advise is not to give up, but find ways to combine those things.”
Papeo recommended students to go to the Career Center and gather information about any industry they are interested in and ask alumni for their experiences.