Advisors offer aide to undecided students. | Infographyic by Cassidy Eldridge/ THE CHIMES
Choosing a major can prove a daunting task. Fortunately, Biola has many resources to assist students with this difficult decision, such as peer academic advising, first year seminar and career development.
A Variety of Resources
Regardless, students who do not come to Biola with a clear plan can find it stressful and difficult to decide on a major. However, Biola’s academic advisors encourage students not to worry about this decision and also know several students feel the same way. The academic advisors hope students realize all of the options open to them: talking to advisors, talking to professors and taking a variety of classes.
“I would say it’s good to just get a variety of resources,” said Eyvette Min, assistant director of academic advising.
The Academic Advising Center offers students opportunities to meet with peer academic advisors from various majors in order to get a better understanding of the different majors. The advisors also encourage students to meet with professors or to sit in on classes they might be interested in.
“Don’t be afraid to take classes that are ‘not needed’ for your major,” Min said. “Don’t be overly cautious in the classes that you’re taking.”
The Value in Experimenting
According to Min, a class can still prove valuable in a student’s life and growth even if it does not fit into the eventual major. Students should not delay too long in choosing a major, but no harm comes from experimenting with a few different types of classes.
“You never know what that class is going to open up for you, and how that class is going to play a part in your overall growth, even if you don’t major in that topic,” Min said. “So I would encourage students not to be too fearful of taking some calculated risks when it comes to the major decision making process.”
Interests and Passions
Biolans should also take care to notice where their interest and passions lie, according to Min. Although everything a student enjoys cannot fit into one major or career, students can find a general idea of what they would like to do based on their hobbies.
“Your passions and your interests don’t have to all roll up into your future career,” Min said. “It is a big decision, but it is not a decision that necessarily has to impact you for the rest of your life.”
Marc Malandra, an associate professor of English, believes praying plays a large role in a student’s decision on finding a major.
“God will show you what things about yourself would work well in a particular career. God hears us when we ask, ‘What direction should I take?’ And also, try to know yourself,” Malandra said.
First year students must take a freshman seminar, whether or not they have chosen a major. During freshman seminar, students get introduced to academics at Biola and get a preview of different departments.
“I think [the first year seminar] is designed so that you will see the culture of our department,” Malandra said. “You get a good feeling of what we are all about.”
While all of these options provide immense help for undecided students, Min believes the best resource comes from knowing God.
“It is really a process of finding your identity and how God uniquely created you,” Min said.