Is your student unsure about their college major? If so, they’re not alone, and more importantly, it’s normal!
Many students worry about which major to list on their college applications and, because they may feel pressure to make an uninformed and early choice, about 80 percent of students in the United States end up changing their major at least once, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
On average, college students change their major at least three times over the course of their college career.
Here at Millsaps College, we encourage students to apply as “exploratory” students, because our Compass Curriculum intentionally provides breadth across academic disciplines AND opportunities for real-world engagement before students have to declare a major. Plus, our faculty members serve as their mentors – professors want to teach at Millsaps precisely because they love working closely with our undergraduate students.
So what about job prospects – does deciding on a major before entering college really matter? Here are some results from a recent report from the Association of American Colleges and Universities and the National Center for Higher Education Management Systems:
- 93% of employers agree that candidates’ demonstrated capacity to think critically, communicate clearly, and solve complex problems is more important than their undergraduate major.
- 4 out of 5 employers agree that all students should acquire broad knowledge in the liberal arts and sciences.
- And how about this myth-busting result from another recent study: the top factor associated with a six-figure salary was not one’s college major, but having taken a large share of classes outside one's major. The researcher, Richard Detweiler, said faculty engagement on a personal level seemed to be the factor in the undergraduate experience that had the greatest impact on life success by the measures he studied.
That kind of personal engagement is the hallmark of a Millsaps College education. Just ask our students and alumni!