Here is a guide to help you decided what your next steps should be based on where you are in your college journey.
Through reflecting on your own life experiences, some research of your own, utilizing resources offered by UNCP, exploring varying classes and opportunities, and support from your academic success coach, you will find the major that will help you achieve your purpose.
Don’t know which to way to lean?
If you are at this stage in your undecided journey, you really don’t have an idea of a major you would like to study. You think you could as likely major in Social Work as you could major in Math (or any other different majors). You likely need some guidance in how to get started. Here’s what we suggest:
1. Spend some time with yourself. Ask yourself some questions. Figure out what you like to do.
Do you already have a hobby you love? Do you admire your Aunt Cathy’s job? Do you like spending time with people, or prefer not to? What aspects of life do you want to celebrate? What about the world needs to change? What sort of pages do you follow on social media? Make a like and dislike list. This is a very simple technique but could lead to a better understanding of what you would like your future career to look like.
2. Research online.
Find out what types of careers are available. You will likely be surprised by some possible careers. Use your likes to guide this search into possible careers.
3. Take diverse classes from the General Education Checklist during your first semesters.
This will help you gain some insight into what various majors look like in the classroom. This also provides you with opportunities to talk to professors in each of these disciplines.
4. Attend academic and career fairs.
These are great opportunities to learn about the different departments available at UNCP. You could also learn about some potential careers that you had never heard or considered before.
5. Meet with your Academic Advisor as well as Undeclared Student Success Coach.
These people are important resources that can answer questions about your next steps or help you talk out the classes you have enjoyed and those that don’t interest you. *You should meet with your Academic Advisor and Undecided Student Success Coach at regular intervals during your discovery of your perfect major.
6. Talk to your peers.
Ask around. Find out about other students’ majors and ask them what they plan on doing after graduation. These conversations could lead to some fresh ideas in your discovery of the right major for you.
7. Meet with a counselor from the Career Center.
These are great people to know and can give you advice on possible careers. They have interest inventories that can give you some guidance into what majors could be a good fit for you. They can also help you discover cool internships that help you further explore a field.
Leaning towards a field:
If you are at this stage of your undecided journey, you may have a field that you are interested in, but haven’t quite nailed down a specific major. This may mean you are interested in Science, but not sure if you should pursue Chemistry or Biology. Here’s some advice:
8. Take classes in the few areas you are interested in.
It is likely that these classes may count as an elective towards either of the majors you eventually choose, if they are in a similar field. However, check with your academic advisor to see if this is true. Taking more classes and gaining more experiences will help you determine which major seems to be a better fit for you.
9. Do more research.
Figure out which careers are more in line with a chemistry degree than a biology degree, though you may likely be able to obtain a similar career with majors in a similar field. This may guide you into which major seems more exciting or in line with your potential future career.
Leaning towards a few majors:
At this stage in your undecided journey, you are probably between just a few majors. You like them all, but know it’s time to make a decision and need a little nudge or reassurance. Here’s a tip:
10. Find an internship or a job shadowing opportunity.
If you think you may be settling into a major, try to find an internship or a job shadowing opportunity. This will hopefully help solidify your choice of a major, or show you that it’s not quite the right path for you. Either way, you’ve gained some useful knowledge and experience. *Career Center will be able to help you with this.
Lean into Declaration!
You’ve reached the final step: Declare your major. You can get the form here: Declaration of Major/Minor Form. You are making real progress on your UNCP journey. After declaring a major, you will be assigned a new academic advisor, one who works in your field and can answer more specific questions about your new major.