Undecided what to major in

Ciara Ingram
22 years old
I recently received my BA in Mass Communications from Lane College in May 2014.
I am currently pursuing my MFA at the New York Film Academy in Manhattan.

During my undergraduate academic journey I have learned two essential things that I believe will be beneficial to all incoming freshmen. These two things are: It is okay to start college as an undecided major and most importantly become involved on your campus.
As a senior in high school there seems to be so much pressure on students to decide what major to declare upon entering college. There are so many Career Fairs and Assessments gear towards aiding students in making that next “Big Decision”, which in turn causes most students to make rash decisions regarding their futures for the satisfaction of other such as parents or mentors. Well, I am here to tell you that it is perfectly okay to go into college and not have a clue as to what it is exactly you want to major in because after all this is the “Rest of Your Life”.
In all honesty, most students who enter college having declared a major often change their minds by their junior year. Take myself for example; I entered college 100% sure that I wanted to be a basketball coach, which lead to me declaring myself as a P.E major. I thought that coaching was my calling because I was an athlete throughout high school and planned to continue that role in college as well. So my senior of high school I said to myself, “Hey, when I am no longer able to play this game anymore I still want to be involved with this sport on the court.” Ideally becoming a coach seemed like not only the answer, but also the perfect career for me. At the time I could not see myself doing anything past basketball, so I naturally assumed this was the only thing I liked doing or could do.
In high school I was fortunate enough to be apart of a winning program and only witness the winning aspect of coaching, but college was completely different. As a college athlete I experienced the other reality of basketball…the losing! Experiencing the ups and downs of winning a few but losing the majority of games overall made the sport I once loved seem like a full time job that I no longer wanted. By my junior year I had witness more than enough of how emotional and physically draining coaching could be. This left me rethinking my future as a coach that I had mapped out for myself.
During my junior year I decided to explore other activities on campus outside of basketball. I joined various clubs and did the unthinkable; I joined a sorority! This year I also decided to change my major from P.E to Mass Communications. I was blind-sided over the years by thought of playing the game of basketball that I failed to realize I had other talents that I used everyday, which are incorporated in Mass Communications.
So what do I mean by, “ It’s okay to declare yourself as undecided?” Well, I mean exactly that. The first two years of college are design for students to figure out that big question, “What do you want to do for the rest of your life?” Do not stress yourself out trying to answer this question right away. Look at your Freshmen and Sophomore year as a grace period to discover who you are and what are things that interest you. In the midst of all the confusion a light bulb will eventually go off in your head, and you will have an idea about what career you’d like to have and most importantly what to declare as your major.

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