Deciding on a major and discovering a career path is not a direct connection from A to B. There are many factors in the equation to help you figure out what you will do after graduation like volunteering, internships, informational interviews, and working with a career advisor. There are many common career myths that we hear from students so I’d like to debunk these myths and share some career realities!
Major ≠ Career
If there’s one equation you need to remember in college, this is it (unless you’re a math major!). When employers interview candidates, they are not looking as much at your major then they are at your experiences and skills. Unless you’re planning to enter a field that requires a particular set of technical skills, such as computer science, you should choose a major that interests you. It is possible to work in almost any career with any major, but what’s important to remember is gaining the hands on experience in your field of interest.
Everyone Else Has a Plan
Just because you overheard another student at lunch talking about their detailed academic plans and career goals doesn’t mean that they have it all figured out. The majority of students change their mind about their major and potential career path several times during college. Many students may be interested in a particular career path that they don’t even fully understand yet. When you hear friends and classmates talking about their major or career goals remember that you’re on your own path to career success, and that looks different for each student.
There is One “Perfect” Career for Me
At this point you should know that nothing in life is absolutely perfect. There are many career paths that could satisfy your career goals, motivations, and interests. College is the perfect time to explore and research these different paths to see what would be the best fit for you as you begin your career. There are other factors to consider such as the work environment, culture, and your personal values that will help you to weigh your career options.
You Have One Career in a Lifetime
Currently, people explore several different careers throughout their life. Gone are the days where you begin working at a company the Monday after graduation and work your way up the ladder until retirement. Instead of a ladder, careers are now compared to lattices, or jungle gyms, where you have the ability to make horizontal moves, or even move down. Professionals are taking inventory of their transferable skills and using these to switch industries and pursue new interests throughout their life. Twenty years from now there will be new occupations that don’t even exist yet! So keep an open mind!
There are even more career myths out there that I hear floating around campus. If there are some specific concerns that you have about career related information, don’t hesitate to come in and speak with an advisor and we can help show you the reality of the situation. You can meet with us during our walk in hours 2-4pm daily, or call (804) 289-8547 to schedule an appointment.