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What are your insights on a good business major a student should go for?

Hello! I am currently a junior in high school and I do have a huge interest in the business field but I don't know what to major in. I have been gaining a lot of interest in business administration, finance, and marketing but I really needed some insight from anyone who have studied in the business field or in the majors I have mentioned just so I can get an idea to see which one is right for me.
#majors #marketing #finance #business


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Alex’s Answer

Hi Lizbeth. I will caveat by saying that a major decision can be quite specific to the person, even within the broader field of business. However, from personal experience, an Economics major is hard to go wrong with. I found it to be a perfect mix of theoretical and real-world application. The principles of supply and demand can truly be applied to all facets of life, and Economics helps you understand them as well as overall human decision making. The more advanced courses can open up into international economics and an even broader scope. You can also focus on the behavioral side, and focus on game theory which is more sociology focused. Regardless, the principles of micro and macro economics, to me, are the building blocks to understanding our economy from the ground up.

That being said, each major has its own benefits. Accounting majors are seemingly always in demand by employers. Understanding financial records has applications across nearly all companies Data analytics has been fast growing. Finance also offers a broad base. Marketing offers a bit different path than I'm familiar with, but is a great field if you're more interested in the consumer side of things.

Some universities/colleges allow you to enter into a broad business curriculum and only declare a major after a year or so. If possible, this could offer you a good way to experience each field before making a decision.

Thank you so much for the information Alex! Lizbeth M.

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Jinesh’s Answer

Hi Lizbeth,

First of all, I really commend you for taking the steps at your age to think about your future and hone in on a major for college. To give you some background I started my college career as a Computer Science major but switched to Finance after my Sophomore year. I have since then graduated with a degree in Finance and currently have a job at a Big Bank (refer to my LinkedIn for further details).

I would suggest to keep your mind open about your major and not worry about having a select major right at the on start of your college career. It is perfectly normal to start off in one major and then switch to a different major down the road. Unless the University you are going to requires you to select your major early on (some Business schools do this), you shouldn't worry about a specific major. For the first few semesters, most business school majors take the same classes anyways, so leverage your first few semester by networking with upperclassmen, alumni and members in business school to decide what major you want to graduate with.

Additionally, you can get most business jobs out there with any business degree. There are only select fields that require you to have a specific major. Focus on a major that you believe will help you learn the most and network.

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Lianna’s Answer

When I went into my undergraduates school, I started as a Management major. I thought I knew I wanted to manage business and people, but I really didn't know what that meant. It just sounded good. I wasn't even through my first semester yet when I realized that Management was way too broad of a topic for me and that I would be better served with a more targeted degree. I narrowed down my choices to Finance and Accounting. Finance still was a little bit of a mystery to me, but I ended up choosing it. I didn't go with Accounting because it has this perception of being really hard and that when you first get a job at a public accounting firm, which is where a large number of accounting graduates go, you work a ton of hours. I pursued the Finance degree and took many classes learning about Stocks and Bonds and investing. I took some corporate classes as well, but mostly the focus was on investments. I soon realized that was not for me either. But by then it was too late to change my major without extending my time, so I finished. I got a job, thankfully, at a Corporate Financial Services company, ironically in an Operational Accounting role. From there I went through an entry level rotational financial development program followed by a robust career full of different Finance and Accounting roles. I now am a leader of many (management) and have worked a variety of types of roles despite the decisions I made back in college.

I tell you my background, because I want you to see how things change. You'll explore and experiment with your likes, dislikes, talents and skills until you find the right track for you. I would start by picking what you feel most drawn to, but you should then attend a school where you have options should you decide to change your mind. Finance and Marketing are quite different than each other and while I enjoyed marketing, I was not very good at it. But I found myself excelling at the more technical/math based fields. Looking back I think I should have chosen Accounting because I would have rocked it based on my skills and personality. But ultimately I have no regrets. I have been able to maneuver my career in a way to keep me challenged and learning new things. I wish you the best in your selection process!

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Ali’s Answer

I can give you my perspective from a Finance point of view.

Quick background: I hold an undergraduate and graduate degree in Finance

If you want to get into the field of finance, I would HIGHLY recommend you to perfect your mathematical knowledge. Honestly speaking, you need to be very good at it. You will be exposed to very complex models that may require a robust mathematical background.

In fact, most of the finance PhD hold a degree in mathematics, physics or engineering. You should know that finance is more than Valuation and Corporate Finance.

To excel in Finance, you need to have a robust understand for Calculus 1, 2 and 3, Linear Algebra, Partial Differentiation, Probability Theory and Fundamental of Statistics at least. When you hold this know-how, you will be able to dig into the interesting world of finance: Quantitative Finance, Structured Finance, Econometrics etc.

Just look up on google for: Black-Scholes Model and you will understand the extent of math involved.


Thank you so much for your insight Ali! Lizbeth M.

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Carolyn’s Answer

Unless you are looking for a business career in a field that requires a very specific skillset (for example, data analytics, accounting, etc.), I'd focus on majors that will really hone the skills you need to be successful. In particular, communication skills are key (both written and oral). Look for majors that require you to write in different styles and formats and to different audiences. Also, develop your analytic abilities through majors which require viewing ideas from multiple angles, research skills, and in-depth critical analysis. Lastly, pick a major that fuels your passion because that will keep you engaged in the education process and will help you develop the skills. I was a double major in History and English, and I have been successful in the business world because I can think critically and communicate effectively. Once you're in the workforce, your actual major does not matter as much as the skills you developed.

Thank you so much for that information! Lizbeth M.

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Michael’s Answer

Great question. For background I was a finance major (statistics minor) and I have a son who is a double major BA/Sports Management. In seeing what is right for you it's always best to get your feet wet. You can do that by volunteer work at school or outside of school: I was a treasurer and secretary during school and early career. Paid work and internships while in high school/college are another great way to gain some experience and test and see what aspects you like best. For many colleges, you may not declare a major until sophomore year, so the freshman experience not only classwork but advisors and talking to other students can also help you get an idea of where you fit. Good luck!

Michael recommends the following next steps:

Volunteer at school or in the community
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Tejash’s Answer


Hi, balance the major with a business and technical track. Both are critical in the future as you grow at companies or run your own company.

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Mary’s Answer

use school to get exposed to as many different disciplines as you can. This way you can start to figure out what you like, what you don't like (sometimes just as important!), what you are good at, etc. A good school will help you with putting together a course schedule to help achieve this, provided that you give them this input. Also, try and secure internships or part time jobs in different fields such as the ones you listed, so that you can get some real world, hands on experience to help focus your studies and future job searches.

Thank you so much for the information Mary! Lizbeth M.

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D’s Answer

The type of business major that you pursue depends on the university you attend. Some schools have concentrated majors in different areas, and other schools have a generic Bachelor of Business Administration degree that can be used for any field. You should take more into account what you do outside of the class as opposed to the major itself, because that will ultimately give you a taste of what it is like to work in that field.

Thank you so much for the information! Lizbeth M.

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Jose’s Answer

Hi Lizbeth,

I started off as an accounting major, then after a brief hiatus from college, I found a program that had a Finance & Accounting Management degree and it seemed more challenging so I switched to that. I had always felt I would want to become an accountant, since junior year of high school, but for me, after taking a finance course, then two, I realized that I enjoyed that subject matter much more and because of that went heavy on finance classes and am now a financial analyst at a big bank. My point with that is, it's great to be open as you are to getting advice on the different majors that are out there in the business, finance, etc. area, but as others have mentioned, some of these programs start off the same and taking a couple of courses with them will give you a greater idea of what subject or direction you favor more over another.
Also, researching the schools, look at what degree programs they offer may help. I also found it helpful looking ahead at the classes offered for the degree programs, reading the descriptions of the courses guide me as well in choosing the direction I went with. Best of luck to you!

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Ereka’s Answer

Business Administration is a large field and can help you qualify for a number of careers. I agree with the above answers. I would also recommend researching the school you are looking to attend. Schools can vary in the programs/majors they offer, and the requirements.

Thank you so much for the information! Lizbeth M.

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