As you near the end of freshman year graduation may seem far away, but there are still some key steps you should take this semester to set yourself on a successful path toward your career. Here are some tips on what you should do to make the most of the time you have left before this semester ends:
Examine Your Major
You may have your major declared, love it and know where your career path is headed – and that’s great! However, if you are not so sure about your major at this point, don’t worry! Typically, there are three main scenarios you may be experiencing at this point of spring semester if you’re feeling unsure about your major:
1. I have a major and like it, but I’m unsure of what my career options are. For students in psychology, art, history, English, and the like, career options are not always as cut-and-dry as other majors. If you find yourself wondering exactly what you can do with your intended degree, stop in and visit us or check out our What Can I Do With a Major In…? section of our website. Here you can explore what career options may be available for you. Even if you have an idea of what your career path holds based on your major, looking through this resource and the occupational outlook handbook can give you insight on options you may be unaware of!
2. I have a major but I’m not sure I really like it or see myself in this career. If you have a major you don’t like, don’t panic. There’s still plenty of time to change to another major and graduate on time. However, it’s always better to declare as soon as you can. That’s why we have our Choosing and Changing a Major resource available on our website. Check out the exercises in this booklet or drop in to set up an appointment to talk with one of our directors about possibilities for your major and career path.
3. I’m still undeclared and I’m not sure I’m any closer to deciding. It’s okay to not have a major declared at the end of your freshman year. Spring semester is a great time to reflect on the courses you’ve liked taking this year (and the courses you haven’t liked!) to get a better understanding of your own interests. Check out our Choosing and Changing a Major resource available on our website to get some tips to start narrowing down your best options to help you decide. Stopping in and talking with is also a great first step to figuring out your major!
Plan Informational Interviews. It can be tough to get internships or relevant experiences during the summer after your freshman year, but it is possible to set up informational interviews with professionals in the career field you are currently interested in.
Informational interviews are for you to interview a professional to get more information. This is a great way to reach out to potential mentors and contacts to get insight on your profession of interest, what it’s really like, outlook for future opportunities, and more. Check out our Informational Interview Guide resource on our Majors and Careers page for tips on how to set up and conduct an informational interview.
Get involved on campus. If you’re not involved in any student organizations on campus, join now! It’s better to join now to get on their email list so you don’t miss out on important information for the end of the semester and during the summer. Then, when you come back to school in the fall you’ll be able to jump right in and get involved in those organizations. There are tons of options to choose from – check out this guide or stop in the office of Student and Community Engagement in the Student Union for more information on organizations that might be right for you!
If you’ve found your niche, great! If you haven’t, there’s still plenty of time to jump in, get involved and set yourself up for success!