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Check-up for Success

12 Sep

Coming to college can be overwhelming you may feel like you are getting lost in the crowd. It’s the fourth week and maybe you’re starting to see people at the university getting settled  into their majors. And if you’re a student without a major, it can sometimes feel like you’re getting left behind. I came into the University of Arizona knowing that I had tons of exciting opportunities…and having no idea where to start. Finding the right path for you can be intimidating, but here’s a check-up for your new semester. (And, if you couldn’t already tell, I’m going to be using a bit of medical humor because I love Grey’s Anatomy.)

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Step One: Check Vitals

Evaluate yourself! Ask yourself, “what do I like, where do I see myself?” Make a list of your interests and focus on yourself.  So many people sign up for classes that their friends or family want them to be in. It is VITAL that you choose class and clubs that interest you, and only you.

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Step Two:  Explain your Symptoms

It’s important that you talk to someone about what you are feeling and thinking. Sometimes it’s difficult to talk to parents and friends because they might not have all the answers that you need. Just like you wouldn’t ask a dentist about your chest pains, you might not want to ask your family and friends about your academics. This is where academic advisors come in – they’re your cardiologists (at least for this metaphor – please don’t go to your academic advisor in the case of a cardiac event). They are a great resource to get you going down the right path. If you have any questions about what major to join, what jobs coordinate with a major, or what classes to take, advisors have all the answers. It is always important to have your questions symptoms heard in order to get all the help that you need.

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Step Three: Clinical Trial  

Now it’s time to see if all the information that you have gathered and narrowed down works, test it out. Go for a major that interests you and that you feel confident about. Take classes that put you on the right path and talk to professors about the class or the major itself. There is no harm in a little extra data, so join clubs and volunteer in the field that interest you.

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Step Four: Follow Up

Clinical Trials do not always go the way we want them to, so sometimes we need to change them. If you find from “analyzing your data” that the major you picked isn’t for you, it’s ok to change. Don’t tie yourself down to a major that you aren’t passionate about. Because if you think a wasted semester is bad, think about a wasted four years. If you have an inkling that things aren’t what you want, it’s much easier to fix that now than after you have a degree and wish you had followed a different passion. So, if things don’t feel just right, go back and talk to your advisor. You might need to rewrite your list of interests and find what speaks to you. Trust your instincts and start exploring new majors

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If you take anything away from this, please know that it’s ok to not be completely certain of what’s to come. Put yourself out there and enjoy the time that you have in college. Now I’m not saying that you should just blow off choosing your major, I’m saying that it’s important to take the time to find yourself and the things that you are most passionate about. Follow your instincts and don’t force finding your passion. Sometimes you will find it in the most unexpected ways. Have fun, explore what you love, and don’t be afraid to get a check-up. Sometimes you need a professional opinion!

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