Sticking to a degree plan can help your career at Amarillo College go more smoothly.
By Brandi Hutcheson
People are faced with decisions every day. They are demanding, vital and can change the course of a person’s life in seconds.
College students especially are faced with some of the most substantial decisions in their lives.
What they will do, who they will be and how they will get there is determined in the course of a college career. This is weighed by the activities in which students participate, the opportunities they grasp and most of all, the major they choose.
Sammie Artho, Associate Director of Advising, said some students come in with a clear idea of what they want to do, while some don’t.
“I think they have to take into account their interests, their strengths, their personality,” Artho said. “Think about what they like to do. What were your favorite courses in high school that may give us some clues.”
Mohini Patel, a biology major, is one of the students that knew for sure. She said since the seventh grade, her dream was to be a cardiologist. Though Patel said she hasn’t changed her major thus far, she could change in the future as a result of learning and experience as a new college student.
“I always wanted to be a doctor and as I grew up I found out that my family has heart problems so I wanted to do something that can help in my family and make something better in my family,” Patel said. “I really didn’t have any [difficulties] because I knew what I wanted to. My dad and my family were happy with what I was doing too. Do what you think you should do not what others want you to do because you know yourself better than anybody else out there.”
Khourey Amos, a math major, said in choosing a major, she wanted to find something she was strong at and something she would enjoy doing for the majority of her life. She said she chose math because it was a strong subject for her in school and there are many job opportunities for math majors. Along with her successes, Amos said one of her main difficulties in choosing a major was a fear of failure.
“I didn’t want to finish school with a degree that I don’t use or end up working in fast food with,” Amos said. “Now that I’ve finally picked and am sticking with my major I feel like I’m finally doing something with my life and I am actually looking forward to the future. Don’t get caught up in all the hype about having your future planned out and knowing what your major is. You don’t want to waste money but you also want to pick something that you will be happy doing.”
There are many options for students who are unclear regarding what major to choose or what to do in their futures. Artho said if a student has some idea of what they want to do, they could job shadow or interview a person in that field to get a better feel of what it is like. An alternative option available is a free career assessment called My Plan that can be reached through the Amarillo College website in the career and employment area.
“Students will take that assessment,” Artho said. “It will help them see their interests, personality skills and values. They will go visit with one of the people in the career center. They’ll evaluate that and interpret it and it will help the student in determining what major that they want to go through and help them with the research process too.”