STORY BY CLARE VANECHAUTE
I came in my first-year as a theatre directing major. By the middle of my first semester, I added a musical theatre minor. By the end of that first semester, I added a bachelor’s in writing. By the end of my second semester, I had also added a public relations triple major.
Now, nearing the end of my first semester of my sophomore year, I am a news/Internet, writing and study of culture and society triple major. I am also considering a minor in business.
So what the heck am I doing? Obviously, I have no idea.
Most people I have talked to have switched their majors at least once. I have a friend who graduated last year who switched his major 12 times and still managed to graduate in four years.
You would think this would give me a sense of hope, the comfort of knowing that I am not the only one who has struggled with what to study and what to do with my life, but, instead, it makes me feel like I can continue at the rate I am going, hopelessly switching majors and areas of interest with no conceivable end in sight.
It is inconceivable that an 18-year-old will know what she wants to do as a career 30 years down the line. The economy is constantly changing, jobs are dwindling and there is some frightening statistic that says a terrifyingly large percentage of college graduates do not even hold careers within the field their degree is in.
So what’s the point?
The point that I am coming to grips with as I battle this mid-college crisis is this: Do what you want and somehow, some way you will get what you need. Not necessarily what you want, but what you need.
I am a big believer in fate. I believe that what happens to us is somehow what is supposed to happen, even if it doesn’t seem like it at the time. I believe that if we focus on our needs and wants, eventually it will all pan out and we will live a life we can look back on and be proud of.
To battle this mid-college crisis, I have learned to let go of my constant need for control. I tend to take things too seriously, to put too much pressure on myself. It eventually leads to me feeling like I have let myself down, when really, my expectations were too high.
I wanted to take a gap year this year. I talked with my older sister about it, and she eventually talked me out of it. She said, “College is the time for exploration. Take a bunch of classes that interest you and just enjoy the time.”
So now I am here, spending my money and my time trying to figure out how to be an active citizen of the world. I am figuring out how to develop my natural abilities into functional societal benefits, and I have discovered that I love to write and to inform the people of what is going on. I have discovered that people are what fascinate me, their personalities and preferences, and the environmental affects that drive them and guides them to become who they are today.
My advice to all of you out there: If you aren’t liking what you are doing or studying, try something new. If you are feeling stuck, remember: You are not alone. Talk to your professors, talk to your friends. College is the time for self-discovery and revelation.
We are told to put so much emphasis on our time here, to study, study, study, to get those good grades, to ace those tests. But college is a time to explore.
We are surrounded on campus by so many gifted and talented students being shaped and molded by even more gifted and talented professors. Our professors aren’t only here to stand in front of a group of anonymous students and talk. They are here as a resource. I guarantee they would love to speak with you.
Forget the mid-college crisis. There are going to be plenty more times down the road that will make this panic look like nothing.
Hold your friends close, make memories and do try to make the grades. Remember what brought you to Drake. Dig a little deeper and self-discover. I promise, it will all be okay.