When I was in high school I heard a statistic that said the average college student changes their major eight times. Crazy, right? That’s what I thought, too; I was determined to start and finish college with the same major. Oh, and finish college in four years.
Fast forward a few years and here I am in my third semester of college and on my technically third major change. So what happened to that girl who was bound and determined to never change her major?
She started college as an excited Child and Family Studies major with an emphasis in Early Childhood Education (that’s “pre-k through 3rd grade teacher plus some other stuff” in layman’s terms). She was going to graduate and become a teacher like she had dreamed of her entire life. Her first semester was filled with general core classes and general classes for Family and Consumer Sciences, which was the umbrella her major was under. Everything was fine and dandy until she got to her second semester and started her Education classes where she realized very soon into the semester that she was not called into teaching and dropped the Early Childhood Education part of her major (Major Change #1).
On top of this abrupt realization that she did not want to be a teacher after all, she realized she didn’t really know what she wanted to do with her life now – which is a whole lot scarier in college than in high school. Luckily, she still had the Child and Family Studies (CFS) part of her major as a safety net so she still had plenty of options other than teaching – and only a few education classes under her belt that now counted as electives. She decided to just ride it out, knowing that God would lead her into the career she was called to be in.
About midway through the semester she decided to tack on a second major, Psychology (Major Change #2), because she had loved the subject since she took a course in high school two years earlier. Her career options were now expanded even further and she was now considering grad school so she could become a counselor.
Fast forward to her third and current semester. She’s in some general classes, a CFS class, and a psychology class. It didn’t take long for her to realize where her passion actually lies, and it’s not in Child and Family Studies, nor was it ever. She realized that she only stayed in CFS because it was a nice safety net in case she didn’t have what it takes to be a counselor. She rationalized it all the time: “Well, if I don’t make it into grad school I’ll have another degree to fall back on.” “I’ll have a degree to work with while I’m working on my Master’s in psychology.” The list went on and on. She also didn’t want to have wasted time in classes that didn’t count towards her major because time is money – especially in a private college.
The semester went on and she realized more and more that CFS wasn’t where she wanted to be – or where she needed to be. God has called us to trust Him in every aspect of our lives and she wasn’t trusting Him with her education, she was trusting her safety net. So, finally, when it was time for advising meetings to plan next semester’s schedule, she broke the news: she was going to single major in psychology (Major Change #3). She then was quickly assigned a new adviser in the psychology department and within a week she had a meeting with him and she realized that this is where she’s supposed to be.
So that’s what happened to the girl who entered college determined to be a teacher. She’s now on the road to becoming a counselor – who also wants to dabble in research – and is trusting God with her education. The idea of grad school still scares her to death, and yeah, she took quite a few classes that now count as electives instead of towards her major, but she is excited for the journey God is leading her on and she knows that He will provide like He always has – even if it means changing her major five more times.
The world will tell you that you need a back-up plan, a safety net, but God tells us to trust Him and the plans that He has for you. We often only see what is immediately in front of us, but God sees the bigger picture. Trust Him to lead you even when it’s hard because you’re scared because you don’t know what to do next or how you’re going to make it financially or whatever it may be. The journey may not be exactly the way you expected it, but it will be worth it.
Photo Credit: Kelli Tungay