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The Daily Wildcat

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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    Majors are not to be judged; appreciate student decisions

    It’s a few weeks into the semester and maybe some of the undeclared majors are ready to declare. Perhaps some students had epiphanies over the summer and are looking to drop their current majors and switch to new ones. Regardless of whether you’re adding, switching or staying, you will be judged, not on how long you took to make your decision, but on what your final decision was.

    Students naturally evaluate each other on their selected majors. An obligatory question asked soon after meeting someone is, “what are you majoring in?” And, depending on the answer, people are either written off as smart and ambitious, or simple and lazy.

    If you’re majoring in journalism, communication, psychology or any other major categorized as brainless, then be prepared to get some rolled eyes and some fake smiles. Or, my personal favorite response: “good for you!” But, the students who are pre-medicine, pre-law or engineering majors, for example, are brilliant and are doing something admirable with their lives. It’s all completely bogus.

    We all have our strengths and weaknesses. One person might be able to solve a biochemistry equation in seconds and another might be able to write a thought-provoking paper in minutes. People attend college to specialize in their strengths and leave with the skills necessary to not only be successful, but to contribute to society. America can’t function on lawyers, doctors and engineers alone. I obviously missed the memo on which abilities are more prized than others. My parents taught me to pursue what I love and what makes me happy.

    In order to get a better sense of self, we as humans compare ourselves to others — this is just a fancier way of saying we judge people in attempt to feel better about ourselves. But if you’re going to go through the trouble of belittling people’s passions and goals, then maybe you should re-evaluate why you’re pursuing your major. Perhaps the judgment stems from being dissatisfied with your own decision. Was your decision based on the prospect of making a lot of money? Or was it your parents’ planned-out path? Was it your fear of taking a risk with something extremely difficult? If you answered yes to any of the above questions, then ask yourself this, are you happy?

    We shouldn’t be ridiculing anyone’s major. People always ask me why I’m majoring in journalism, which some argue is essentially “dying.” I’m majoring in it because I love it and it makes me happy. Call me naive, but I believe success comes with happiness. I don’t want to dread waking up and going to work every day, do you? In the end, there are always going to be lesser or greater people than yourself. Your duty is not to size them up and beat them down below yourself. You goal should always be to achieve what you want, and what you desire. Don’t let anyone establish a mold for you, and don’t establish a mold for someone else, or try to break theirs down.

    — Kelly Hultgren is a journalism junior. She can be reached at

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