The advantage of being undecided
Choosing a major can be difficult, especially when you have many skills and interests. You might be a strong musician, but you also might have a knack for physics, a penchant for programming, a love for literature or a mind for business.
Goshen College focuses on international, intercultural, interdisciplinary, and integrative teaching and learning that offers every student a life-orienting story. You might feel a lot of pressure to decide your major right now; but your studies at Goshen are not just about building depth in a particular field, they are also about exploring your academic passions.
Chemists that know how to write strong essays, programmers that know how to start their own businesses, artists that have learned how to promote themselves and their work — being undecided now need not be a handicap for your future. Being undecided can be an advantage.
Goshen, at your service
At Goshen College, there are loads of resources available for undecided students and we have some of the highlights listed below.
- Explore your career and educational opportunities with Career Services.
- View and read more about Goshen College’s variety of majors, minors and concentrations.
- Remember that one-on-one conversations (with multiple people, such as your academic advisor, other professors, senior students, the director of our Career Services Office) and personal career counseling are available to all students.
- Acquire a variety of skills and discover what you love through our CORE curriculum classes for first-year students.
- Go to the major-minor fair in October on campus and — following the fair — interview one-on-one with a professor to discuss your academic and career options.
Lots to learn, more to explore
- Explore the world on Study-Service Term (SST) in such locations as Peru, Nicaragua, Cambodia, China, Tanzania, Senegal and more. SST is open to everyone and 80% of all students participate in the program.
- Experience Goshen’s thriving downtown culture of galleries, cuisine, music and theater. And it’s all accessible by bike through Goshen’s extensive trail system or via the free Inter-Urban Trolley.
- Discover Goshen College’s 135+ on-campus acres and 1,189-acre Merry Lea Environmental Learning Center and nature sanctuary.
- Join a choir, orchestra or jazz band; direct or act in a stage production; spearhead new on campus environmental initiatives; work side-by-side with professors on academic research. There are many ways to get involved on campus.
- Shoot some hoops; pump iron; scale the climbing wall; or run on your choice of indoor track, outdoor track or miles of adjacent roads and trails; all this available from Goshen College’s Recreation-Fitness Center.
- Take in shows from world class artists like The Wailin’ Jennys, The Estonian National Symphony Orchestra, The Punch Brothers, Garrison Keillor and more at the beautiful (and acoustically excellent) Sauder Concert Hall on campus.
Still skeptical? Say hello to Dan Vader
Hello. Daniel Vader here. When I started my first semester at Goshen, I was an undecided student. I was good at a lot of things and bad at a few, but I had no idea what I wanted to study. At first I thought I might major in physics or maybe start working towards an engineering degree, but then I rediscovered my love for writing and literature while taking a class with one of Goshen’s many amazing professors. Eventually, I decided to major in English and minor in computer science.
You might be scratching your head right now. English and computer science seem like an unlikely combo, don’t they? But since graduation, I have had more opportunities and been to more interesting places than I ever could have imagined my first year of college. I have been to Peru, Ethiopia and Burkina Faso; I have taught English as a foreign language in Chad; and I have worked as a freelance web developer. Then Goshen College hired me as their web content strategist and manager, using both my editorial skills and my programming knowledge to aid digital communication.
But the journey of this undecided student is not over. In order to pursue my passion for health-related social justice, I am now working on my Master of Public Health in Epidemiology at Drexel University.
My point is that you can be undecided in college, combine your interests, have a successful career and love your work. If you are starting your first semester at Goshen College and are “undecided,” I would wish you luck, but I doubt you will need it.