As sophomores, spring semester is a very important time. It can seem like graduation is still far away, but now is the time to be building foundations for success in your career path as you get ready to enter junior year. Here are some tips on what you should be doing now:
Solidify Your Major
Sometimes career interests change, and that’s okay! It’s perfectly normal to change your major, but sophomore year is a critical time to make that decision. Though it is possible to graduate on time if you change your major after sophomore year, it becomes much more unlikely. Now is the time where you can change your major and most likely still graduate on time.
Maybe it’s not a big deal to you if it takes more than four years to graduate, but be aware that financial aid usually will not cover more than four years. So waiting to think about changing your major can cost you – a lot.
That’s why now, before scheduling begins for the 2014 fall semester, it is important for you to decide whether you are truly interested in the career path you are on. To determine whether to change your major:
1. Be honest with yourself. You should not stay in a major to make your family, friends, or even faculty adviser happy. Everyone can have doubts about their major now and then, but if you feel like you are doubting your major on a regular basis – or daily – it might be time to consider switching career paths.
2. Drop in our office. Even if you are just thinking about wanting to change your major, come see us. We have resources and information that can help you find out and decide if a different major may be right for you.
3. Fill out the necessary paperwork. If you know you want to switch or add your major and have visited us, pop over to the registrar’s office in Yochum Hall to get the necessary paperwork filled out. The sooner you declare your major, the sooner you will get a new adviser who can guide you on the courses you need to take from here.
Get Experience in the Environment of your Field
Pursuing internship opportunities are not impossible for sophomores, but if you find you are having a hard time getting an internship in your field, there are still other ways to get experience:
1. Get a part-time or full-time summer job in the environment of your field. For example, if you are interested in human resources, look for jobs as an administrative assistant or other positions in a human resources office. You won’t be doing human resources work, but you will be exposed to the kind of environment, people, and experiences you may have in the future. Getting a job in the same office or field is great to get exposure to the environment even if the job you are doing is not related to the field itself.
2. Volunteer in your field. Even if it’s just a few hours a week, volunteering in your field is a valuable experience you can include on your resume. This is also a great option if you have a part-time job unrelated to your major but also want relevant experience in your field. There are tons of volunteer websites like Hands On Central Ohio where you can search for organizations by type, field, and be directed to their website. From there, you can find organizations related to your major and contact the organization directly to ask to speak with a volunteer coordinator. More than likely, they will be happy to have an extra set of hands.
For more information on volunteer options, stop in our office.
Sophomore year is a great time to get exposure to your field of interest and change your major if you want. So take advantage of opportunities to get experience related to your field in some way to help you solidify or change your career direction.
If you have any questions or concerns, you can stop in our office on the 2nd floor of the library any time – we’re always happy to help you!