When I first started university, I was incredibly excited to be out of high school and in an environment where I could learn the things I wanted to learn. I was tired of all the compulsory courses and, to be honest, math and science were really getting me down. Coming into university, I could focus on what I really liked about school and the subjects my teachers made me passionate about – English, Creative Writing and History.
After accepting my offer to Brock, a part of me felt like I was home free; my future was set.
However, I was wrong.
I am currently going into my third year and I feel as though I don’t know what I’m going to do with my degree. Or with my life, for that matter.
“You can’t do much with an English major,” people always say. Yeah, I think I understand that now, and I feel trapped. But then again, I know I have many possibilities.
It is undeniably hard to figure out the entire course of your educational and professional careers when you are at the ripe, young age of 17 or 18. However, whatever road you decide to go down, you will never really be stuck.
If you’re having doubts about your program or what you planned on doing with your future, do not freak out. It’s a typical part of life and it’s completely normal. Odds are that it’s just the stress monsters in your head trying to psych you out.
There are so many resources around you – on and off campus – to help guide you and give you the push you need in the right direction. Talk to an academic advisor, your friends, your parents, professors, old teachers, or even that person sitting beside you at the bar (at your own discretion).
University is supposed to be a time for learning and exploring different options, and when it comes to figuring out what you’re going to do with your degree, it’s completely fine to be on the fence about your decision.
Whether you finish your program in four years or ten, it doesn’t really change the outcome; all you need to worry about is getting to that end goal that ends up making you happy. Take your time, work things out and breathe.
Of course it won’t be all that simple all the time. There will be days when you feel like you know what you’re doing, and days when you feel like you’ve made the worst mistake of your life. That’s just when you need to sit back and try to remember why you ended up at university in the first place.
What made you passionate about your program? Who or what inspired you? What did you want to do with your degree? What do you still need to do to get there?
Constantly asking yourself questions will help you figure out that your life doesn’t end if you make one little mistake when you’re young.
Do I know what I want to do when I’m done university? Not really.
Do I have plans? I think so? I don’t even know anymore.
One thing I know I’m certain about is that I picked the right program for myself. It took me four years of high school to realize I was not good enough at math to be an architect like I wanted to be when I was nine years old and playing with my LEGO blocks, and my art skills definitely weren’t up to par with the short-lived idea of being an interior designer.
Writing an entertaining short story? That I could manage. Get a good mark on an essay? Easy enough. Reading? Loved it!
Narrowing down to a major in English took some time, but at that point, I had opened a door to a plethora of different opportunities that didn’t just stop at “teacher” or “writer” – although those are the two occupations I’m most interested in.
When it comes down to it, either you know what you’re doing or you don’t.
If you do, fantastic. Get out there and show the world what you have to offer.
If you don’t, don’t sweat it. You’ll figure it out in time. You just have to be willing to take the time to do it.
Like I said, deciding your whole life when you’re barely legal is a lot to put on your young shoulders. Take the time to learn about what you really want, and I’m sure the future you will be thankful.