When you’re 18, many people keep telling you that you have the world at your feet... While this has a grain of truth in it, it doesn’t mean you will always make the right choices or choose the right career path right off the bat. You can attend all of the open days, chat to lecturers and read through all of the course information provided: and STILL end up in the wrong course! I’m not talking about first day jitters, or just not liking a few of your course modules, I’m talking about taking a course for the wrong reasons.
And what if you have made the wrong choice, and are thinking of changing your course of study? Keep this in mind first.
There are many wrong reasons to pick a specific field of study. Perhaps your family has put pressure on you to study a certain course, or you believed that studying a certain degree would bring you a certain earning potential. Maybe you wanted to look cool at the next party because you are studying philosophy, when in your heart of hearts, you wanted to study journalism.
Whatever the reason, you find yourself a term in and hating every minute. Your grades are slipping and you feel lost. Don’t see this as failure, but rather a time to listen to yourself and what you really want. This will help you make the right decisions, which can change your entire university experience.
If you know it’s time for a new study path, we’ll get you there.
Start by chatting to your course advisor or counsellor
The first step is to chat open and honestly about your degree choice and why it isn’t working for you. Your course advisor will be able to help you work out the main issues and help you on the path to getting it right. Remember: they want to see you succeed and thrive in your chosen course, and though it might seem like a stressful process you will find a solution to your current situation and get yourself into a course you love.
Find out what course you actually want to do
Some transfers will be easier than others, like if you are swapping from history to English, no problem. But you need to work out what course you actually want to be doing to get yourself on the right path. It’s important to know that you 100% will not fall back in love with the course you are currently studying and that another course is 100% the path you want to undertake. So do you research, chat to other students in your course and find the course that is right for you.
Make sure that the course you are doing is, in fact, the issue
Could it be that you are homesick or not settling in properly? Have you made friends you can study and hang with? Is your accommodation a happy place? All of these issues can greatly affect your time at university. It’s easy to confuse these feelings with thinking you dislike your course when in actual fact it is your environment that is letting you down. So make the most of extracurricular opportunities and make plans to head home to see your family and loved ones. It might just be the best opportunity to re-align everything. Have an honest chat with yourself and work out if it is the course or uni life that is getting you down.
Find your passion again, there is a reason why you started
Have you thought about taking some short courses on the subjects that interest you? Keep the passion for what you love alive by taking short courses or subjects in your field of interest while you get your degree. You’ll find that when you enter the marketplace, these skills are transferable between jobs.
Happiness is key when deciding on your next journey at uni. Believe me when I tell you that many people have been in this exact situation and have changed their degrees and gone on to be fulfilled and much better off, personally and academically.
Main Image by TeroVesalainen
So go on, take that leap of faith and find yourself a degree and then a career you love!