Choosing a Major / Program of Study

WHY? 

It is required by every college. Colleges require core academics for “breadth” and major courses for “depth”. All courses taken provide a framework for an interdependence of knowledge. Completing the required courses in a PROGRAM OF STUDY (most college call this a Major) tends to prepare us for the many opportunities in life in which we will pursue other topics or issues in depth.

WHEN?

When applying to Northeast Mississippi Community College, you are to indicate a Program of Study. This automatically identifies an advisor for you. Keep in mind that you can change your Program of Study any time you wish. Most Program of Studys require an extensive number of pre-requisites and credits. If you prolong the process, you may have to attend more than two years if you are a vocational or technical Program of Study or more than four years if you are working on a B. A. or B. S. degree.

HOW DO I CHANGE MY MAJOR/PROGRAM OF STUDY?

Go to the Records Office in Ramsey Hall. Never simply change your Program of Study in your own mind without properly changing your Program of Study in the Records Office. Changing Program of Studys also aligns you with a different advisor. You may call (662)720-7262 regarding this process.

WHAT DO I CONSIDER IN DECIDING ON A MAJOR/PROGRAM OF STUDY?

  • For BS/BA candidates, keep in mind that choosing a Program of Study (major) in and of itself is not an action that will likely change your life. It is only one part of an unceasing process of intellectual exploration. Declaring a Program of Study is not one of those irreversible decisions of life.
  • In reality, there are several “right” Program of Study for any individual. Most people have many interests and much potential. The key is to choose an undergraduate Program of Study that captures your interest, motivates you, makes you happy, and allows you to use your strengths.
  • Choosing a Program of Study and preparing for a career are not necessarily the same process. A college Program of Study helps prepare you for the job market, but most Program of Studys do not lead to a narrowly focused list of job options. Instead, a Program of Study can prepare you for numerous job possibilities.
  • Choosing a Program of Study simply because it promises to lead to a high paying job does not guarantee that you will do well in that Program of Study or enjoy the work in that area.
  • Take note of the following as part of your decision-making process: your grades, electives, skills acquired through your coursework, personal traits, goals, extracurricular activities, volunteer work, courses you have liked and why, teachers you have liked and why.
  • You would be wise to base your decisions about your Program of Study on your interests, rather than on economic concerns or outside pressures. Nobody knows exactly what jobs will be available and what the economy will look like five years from now, much less in 15 or 20 years. Choose a Program of Study that you enjoy. What you enjoy doing will engage your mind in the most active way while you are in school.

According to a survey released in the spring of 2005 by The National Association of Colleges and Employers, 68.6 percent said they chose a Program of Study because they liked the kind of work it would enable them to do. Some (13.9 percent) admitted that they “drifted” into their Program of Study; 6.9 percent were influenced by earning potential and 5.4 percent said they followed a family member or friend’s advice. The remaining respondents (5.2 percent) were influenced by “other” reasons. Only 52.4 percent never changed their Program of Study; 26.5 percent changed it once and 12.1 percent changed it more than once.

  • Identify areas you want to understand. Success in a Program of Study depends on the right combination of interests, skills, efforts and attitudes. Explore what interests you most.
  • Meet with a counselor in Ramsey Hall during your first or second semester for one-on-one discussions regarding the selection of a Program of Study.
  • Visit the Counseling Center in Ramsey Hall for opportunities to take career interest inventories. The Career/Success Center is open from 8:00 until 4:30 Monday through Thursday and 8:00 until 4:00 on Friday. Call (662)720-7313 for assistance.

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