Nationally, of students who enter their first year of college undecided, 22% are completely undecided, while 31% are tentatively decided and 43% have several ideas but are not ready to decide (Gordon and Steele, 2003). One of every five first-year students at Illinois Wesleyan University (IWU) comes in undeclared as his or her major. Further, even though many students do enter IWU with a major, this often changes once they start taking classes. Whether you are undecided or contemplating a change of major, there are appropriate resources available to you at IWU!
Utilize the resources on campus in the Academic Advising Center (Holmes Hall - Room 110, through the Office of the Registrar) and in the Hart Career Center in the Welcome Center.
Attend the next IWU Majors and Minors Fair on September 26, 2012.
Evaluate your interests, skills, values and how they will coincide with various majors and career paths. Make lists!
Research the majors offered at IWU and start to gain more information about them. Eliminate programs you know you are not interested in.
Visit department homepages of majors that are of interest to you.
Attend meetings of student and professional organizations that interest you.
Pursue course work and co-curricular activities that expand your knowledge about fields of study and help you develop additional skills. This will aid you in self-assessment in the major and career decision-making process. Computer, foreign language, leadership, and communication skills are valuable in any profession.
Talk to friends and classmates about their majors, minors, and career paths. Talk to professors and advisors about programs and majors related to courses and subjects that interest you.
Search for specific professions you are interested in on the Occupational Outlook Handbook to get an overview of the profession and education needed: http://www/bls.gov.oco/
Use the Internet to search for information on potential academic and career interests.
Remember that a liberal arts degree can lead you to a variety of different career paths!
IWU Hart Career Center WEb Sites by Major - This is a listing of all majors offered at Illinois Wesleyan University with links to relevant career information.
Exploratory Student Resources Page (Indiana University) - This page helps students understand the processes and issues students face when choosing an undergraduate major. Particularly helpful are the Decision Making Process section and the Xploratory Files (highlights real stories of students describing their experiences while choosing a major).
Occupational Outlook Handbook - The Occupational Outlook Handbook is a nationally recognized source of career information, designed to provide valuable assistance to individuals making decisions about their future work lives.