My heart was pounding as I hovered over the submission button for my UC college application. Four years of long school days, weeks of stress over tests and hours of writing college essays all led up to this moment. Pressing this button symbolized the start of the rest of my life and the end of my childhood.
Seniors worldwide are in the same position as me — nervous for what the future holds. I, however, find myself more lost than most. I applied as an undecided major to all of my colleges, a stereotypically risky decision, yet I’m not worried.
When mentioning this decision I was often met with concern, family members telling me, “that’s the worst thing you could do,” but I never listened to them. Instead I heard the other half, the ones who expressed their own regrets exclaiming “I wish I had done that!”
Without a clear path in front of me, I spent the application process worried about my future. So, the pressure of choosing a major just fanned the flames. Meanwhile, all around me, I saw my friends apply to specific majors with set plans in place. At one point I considered choosing some random majors that sounded interesting. That way it would at least seem like I had a plan, right?
Yet after an honest discussion with myself I realized the cons outweighed the pros. Guessing about future ventures would only lead to confusion and falsehoods, making choosing a major incredibly unnecessary.
I plan to go to college to find out what I want to do. After all, isn’t that a big part of the college experience?
A large percentage of schools don’t even enforce declaring a major until at least the end of your sophomore year of college, so what’s the rush? College should be a place to engage in new experiences: meeting new people, learning new skills, being away from home, and most significantly, figuring out what you want to do with your life, making high school speculations reasonably pointless.
My only suggestion to those who find themselves in a similar situation is to try not to worry, even if you are the only person you know applying undecided. Just because all your friends are applying with a decided major doesn’t mean you’re on the wrong path. Don’t let your decision about your major add to the existing pressures, weighing you down in an already stressful and challenging situation. Make the best of what you have and enjoy what you can. And even if you think you know what profession you’re interested in, you can always switch majors.
What happens happens. It is what it is. C’est la vie.
— By Miles Morrow
Originally published in the Feb. 1 edition of the Octagon.