Problems with Choosing a Major and a College

By Daniel J. Tomasulo, PhD, TEP, MFA, MAPP

I am currently a college freshman studying in the medical field and looking to transfer out. I have realized that the medical field is not for me but I have no clue what I want to do. I’m transferring to a different school as undecided however I don’t want to be undecided and waste money not knowing what I want to do. I am completely stuck because I am afraid if I take a year off I’ll never go back. I’m thinking about a major that this school doesn’t even have and I don’t want to transfer again after I transfer here. I have no clue where to start on deciding my major and I feel like I am completely unprepared to decide my life career right now. I am lost and I have absolutely no idea what I should do for now and it is stressing me out and effecting the schoolwork I have to do as my mind just shuts down from the stress and I give up.

A: Almost 70 percent of college students change their majors once they get into college. Your search is normal and your concern is right in line with your current search for a career. What I am trying to say is that it is very normal—and necessary—to go through a period of time where you do not know what direction to go in. The reason is simple. You don’t actually have enough good information to make the decision. That is why college is a time to sample many possibilities, and then focus.

My strong suggestion to you right now is to start identifying what you don’t want and start sampling what you do. If you would like a bit of inspiration here is Steve Jobs’s (co-founder of Apple) commencement speech to the graduates of Stanford University in 2005.

Wishing you patience and peace,
Dr. Dan
Proof Positive Blog @ PsychCentral

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 11 May 2013

APA Reference
Tomasulo, D. (2013). Problems with Choosing a Major and a College. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 1, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2013/05/11/problems-with-choosing-a-major-and-a-college/