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Was your major related to your profession now?

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Subject: Career question for you

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Michel’s Answer

I originally started a degree in Allied Health because I thought I wanted to be a nurse then I transitioned over to Biology which is very relevant to medicine so originally no my degree was not relevant to the work that I do now, but I fell in love with Biology the second I started doing classes that were relevant to it, and that really helped guide my decision of going towards medicine.
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James Constantine’s Answer

Hello Anna,

You're so am I major was related to my main discipline in 1972 I commenced studying computing and mastered 10 languages but that was all
self taught stuff. In 1988 I graduated as a dietitian nutritionist in Brisbane Queensland Australia. Since then I worked in private practice and in three government health departments in Australia with the state health authorities.

Do not forget to look at my autobiography to find foods rich in the nutrients needed for psychological performance and study. If you were really low in several nutrients, repletion will result in a quantum leap in academic acumen.

Hope this helps.
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A. Michelle’s Answer

My major was not directly related to my current job. However, it strengthened skills that are vital to my job, including research, writing, analysis and public speaking. I am a big proponent of acquiring or strengthening skills that can be leveraged in different jobs.
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Thomas’s Answer

Hey Anna!

My degree was in Music, and now I'm a software engineer. I really enjoyed my time in college studying music but eventually realized it was hard to pursue a career in music aside from performance or education. Obviously, there are other niche careers in music, but those were either hard to find or required certain talents I didn't have.

I think it's important to pursue a degree that you're passionate about, or that will help you toward your career goals. However, many people end up in careers totally different from their college degrees. You might find a new passion/direction during your time in college, or years after; you never know!

I hope that can be an encouragement to you! Knowing that your degree can help you in your future career, but it doesn't have to determine your future if you want something else.
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Chirayu’s Answer

No, my major was in economics and I am a data analyst. I picked up skills such as programming, data analysis by learning them through certifications and got into the field that was more my type and also learned skills that employers prefer.
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Lisa’s Answer

Hi Anna,

We're answering this as a group. We all work in the tech industry at PagerDuty.

Martin: Absolutely not. After high school, I didn't go to college and I learned a trade (graphic arts). When I went to college, I was an English major. Now, I'm in software engineering. I don't think the major is that important. The most important thing you learn in college is how to learn.

Nadia: In college I studied pre-law, then psychology, and then added in philosophy. After college, I learned a trade (aesthetician). And now, I'm a sales engineer.

Tanya: Yes and no. I studied economics and hospitality in college. I started my career in hospitality, and realized it wasn't what I wanted. I started working in event management at a tech company. I wanted something more challenging. Today, I work in demand generation in the tech industry. The most important takeaway from college and early career was developing my soft skills.

Lisa: Yes! I was a business major. I didn't know exactly what I wanted to do with that, but currently work as a marketing manager and use a lot of the skills I learned in school.
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Kelley’s Answer

Technically, no...
When they said college students change their major on average 7 times during the course of their education, I challenged that theory. I majored in everything from pre-vet to dental hygiene to human services and more. As a first generation student attending college I was like a kid in a candy store and would change majors with the seasons. Having received no direction from family, only because they literally didn't know what advice to give, I wasn't able to settle down and be consistent with a specific major. In the end, I had to take a hard look at myself and figure out what I really wanted out of life. Was college for me or should I get a job like the rest of my family members.
Well, by the looks of my picture I did graduate from college. I received a BA in Social Science/ Community Response and a MEd in Adult Education & Training and have spent the past 11 years in the education industry!
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Allegra’s Answer

Hi Anna,

Choosing a major can feel like you are locking yourself into a future career, but know that many times, it will simply help to guide you towards your potential interests and give you a place to start. I was a communications major in college and now work in the corporate social impact space. I enjoyed my major because it gave me an opportunity to learn about many industries and career paths. Good luck!
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Amy’s Answer

You should never feel locked into a career field due to your major, rather your major should just provide you with a foundation from which to leap.
I was a Business/Finance major which did provide me with a valuable foundation to start my career. However, over the span of my career I have worked in Financial Planning, Sales, Human Resources, and Marketing fields. This breadth of experience versus a more linear path has afforded me opportunities to continue to explore my interests which are ever-changing. And I am never bored!
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Jessica’s Answer

Choosing a major in college is an important decision but it often doesn't actually directly relate to the career you end up in. It's not as important as it once was and you can go to grad school and change careers. What will never stop being important is curiosity, desire to learn, and the ability to pivot and be flexible as life and career opportunities come your way.
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Juney’s Answer

I'm a programmer by degree, a game producer / project manager / business developer by trade, and an organisational nut by nature.

During university, I thought I wanted to be in the computer science space, and somehow thought being a software engineer was the only valid route. Turns out, there are many more flavours available, and all experience I'd been gaining organising events in online games (from MMO guilds/raids to web-based scavenger hunts) and offline (career events to conferences) was naturally setting me up for a more organisational role in the game industry. I use my Computer Science BSc. and Game & Media Technology MSc. degrees daily, as well as all networked relationships & organisational experience I gained on the side, but only to inform my unrelated role on the business side.
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Jax’s Answer

Hello Anna!

I don't have a major. Never went to college or got a degree. Went into several trades growing up, picked up a skill or two from every job I had, and made myself very marketable.

Explored a lot of various walks of life and ended up settling into metal working by chance. Didn't know I had the talent for it, or love it so much! Led into an instructor position at a small academy that trains incoming workers for a shipyard and the rest is history.

Always thought I'd be a writer or get into Law when I was in high school. Never stop learning, no matter how old you become.
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Frances’s Answer

Yes. I majored in engineering and now I’m working as a Civil Engineer in the public sector. With this degree specifically, you can do many things with it. Some people have gone for their master’s degree and either became a university professor or did something business related (i.e. starting their own engineering company). Others have gone into the military using their skills and knowledge in engineering and science. Depending on what you want to major in, you can try to be creative with the skills you have and go down a different route with it.
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Jessica’s Answer

Hi Anna,
This is a great question! Many times, when a student goes into a social science or humanities degree (i.e. English, Sociology, Art History), students have a hard time envisioning a career because there may not be an obvious connection. The focus can be more on soft skills and a focus on gaining experience while in college (i.e. student orgs, internships) to shape a career path.
I have my degree in communications and am a career advisor - I use soft skills I've gained with my degree and the experiences I had in several college positions to make a case for my current job.
Bottom line, your college major isn't always perfectly aligned with your job opportunities. And, that's okay. As long as you are building practical skills outside of the classroom.
I hope this helps!
Jessica
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Sophie’s Answer

Hi Anna,
Yes, I would say my master's degree in psychology is related to my profession because I enjoy relating to people and communicating with them about anything. My desire is to one day have an office and be there for people of all cultures, ages, gender, and profession when they need that someone to talk to about whatever they are dealing with. I do plan to continue my education in psychology and mental health so I can be of more support to the world around me. Right now, I'm using my degree as a career counselor, and I absolutely love it.
Thanks for your question,
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Brianna’s Answer

Yes! My undergraduate major was in Cognitive Science with a focus on Psycholinguistics. I honestly had a lot of trouble finding a related job right out of college. I took a gap year where I lived at home and did an unrelated job before attending graduate school for an MS in clinical speech-language pathology. I now work as a speech therapist and work a lot with stroke survivors, people with language processing disorders, and people with traumatic brain injuries. It actually fits with my undergraduate major very well, which is interesting because I did not know about speech pathology as a job options until looking at graduate school options.
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Riza’s Answer

Yes. I studied pharmacy in college then I worked as a Pharmacy clerk and technician. I also do part time as english teacher. Make sure that the degree you want to pursue you will have advantage in the long run. You can take different jobs for the experience and then choose whatever makes you happy the most.
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