Does this sound familiar? You're loving everything you're reading about a certain college: the location, the campus, the real-world learning opportunities, the student life ...and then, ugh, they don't offer the major I’m interested in?
When that happens—when you don't see your intended major listed at a college you're really interested in—repeat after us: DON’T GIVE UP ON IT!
Here’s what to do.
Meet with an admissions counselor. Mention that while everything else about the school really appeals to you, you wish that they offered [insert your major here]. Chances are, they've heard this from other students and know exactly how to respond.
They may, for instance, explain how other majors are comparable to the one you're looking for or that that particular major is actually forthcoming. You might also learn that they give students the opportunity to chart their own course of study. At Siena, we call this the Student Designed Interdisciplinary Major (SDIM).
Talk to the Career Center. If you're set on a specific major, we're guessing you have a specific career path in mind. If that's the case, request a chat with someone at the Career and Internship Center. After sharing your goals for your future, you may discover alternate paths that can lead you to the same opportunities. Plus, this route will show you just how helpful their career and internship advisors can be.
Consider entering undecided. Hear us out on this one. The truth is, your major doesn't necessarily define your career. Plenty of successful professionals find themselves in jobs that don't line up with their college major. Also, you don't have to choose a major now.
By entering undecided, you'll be opening yourself up to new interests you never knew you had, and new career possibilities you hadn't yet thought of. (At Siena, we actually refer to undecided students as exploring students.) This also gives you time to carefully create the major you want, if that's an option, rather than rushing into anything. On top of all this, don't forget that internships will prove your expertise in a specific field even more than the major written on your resume!
All in all, not seeing your initial chosen major listed at a school you really love shouldn't be an immediate deal-breaker. If anything, it's just a conversation starter.