For those who may not know, I am pursuing a special major, which means that I created my own degree program with the help of the different departments involved. Sounds great right? Well, there are many misconceptions that come with pursuing a DIY degree.
People Will Understand
At first, I believed this. And then I had to explain what a special major meant over and over and over again. It’s seriously draining. Since it is not a well known thing to do, people won’t understand how it works or why it’s even possible.
You’re Not The Only One
I have never met anyone else who has made their own major. Not even online. As already said, it is not a well known thing to do, so no one does it. Plus the likelihood of having multiple special majors doing relatively the same thing is not likely at all. Forever alone, literally.
Everyone Can Do It
It takes a certain type of person to make your own major. First, it takes a lot of time to plan and get approval, so you need to be patient. Second, you have to already know what your career objectives are and prove that your plan accomplishes that, so if you are on the fence about what your future job might be, it’s not a good idea to do a special major. Third, factors such as GPA and faculty support are really important, because it takes a very self-disciplined student to get a DIY degree, and if you can’t show that through succeeding in school, it won’t happen.
As said above, you need to be a self-disciplined student who is willing to work hard. Also, you don’t fit in exactly with students pursuing degrees in the departments you are using. For example, I am doing a combination of Business and Communications, and every time I go into a Business class, I feel so out of the group and outcasted. That’s really hard on a student when you don’t necessarily find support with your peers because you’re not quite like them. My current struggle is unit overload and applying to graduate, because neither of those are common issues for a pre-made degree student.
A Truth: It’s Worth It
You probably read this and thought, “Wow, why is she pursuing something so complicated?” Easy, it’s totally worth it. Being able to say that I am the only person with my degree from my university is pretty cool. Also, being specialized (Digital Communications and Marketing) can help me find employment. The unique factor is also a plus.
All in all, being a special major is pretty cool, even with the ups and downs and confusion it can cause from time to time.