Choosing a Major
Are you undecided? Or as we like to say, still exploring?
At Purchase there is no typical student.
Some have been honing their artistic skills from a young age and are laser focused on their academic path. Others are not sure exactly which direction they want to go.
If you’re undecided, you’re not alone.
While some of our undecided applicants have absolutely no idea what to major in, many more have so many ideas and interests, they’re just not ready to decide. And keep this in mind: many students who declare a major change their mind during their time at Purchase.
We offer 47 majors and 32 minors in the arts and liberal arts and sciences to ignite your interests and passions. At the heart of academic life at Purchase is a strong liberal arts education that emphasizes inquiry, mastery of skills, and creativity to lay the groundwork for a personally and professionally fulfilling life, regardless of your major.
Things to Consider
Don’t take a backseat.
Finding the right major requires you to think critically about your interests and values. Actively pursue what intrigues you and engage with classmates, faculty, and staff who share your passion. Also, try new things—it’s what your college experience is all about.
You can always change it.
Once you choose a major, don’t feel like you’re stuck. While some are easier to change than others, no student should continue in a major that isn’t the right fit.
It’s not a lifelong commitment.
Choosing a major does not mean you’re choosing a career you will have to stick with for the rest of your life. The liberal arts and sciences provide a foundation for thinking critically about the world around you and dealing with complexity, diversity, and change. Most people change jobs six to ten times during their careers, or change careers entirely. A liberal arts degree will prepare you to pursue jobs in many fields—even jobs that don’t yet exist.
Steps to Making a Decision
Talk to a professor. It may sound intimidating, but our faculty are passionate about what they teach and are always happy to speak to prospective majors about their programs.
Visit the Career Development Center for information. Counselors can help you explore your interests.
Set up an appointment to speak with an advisor in the Advising Center.
Participate in co-curricular activities on campus. Joining clubs or organizations on campus will not only help you to gather information, it will allow you to spend time with students with similar interests.
Think seriously about your values and goals for the future. Ask yourself these questions:
- What are my strengths and weaknesses?
- What are my values and interests?
- Have I done research on different majors? (Check out ours to pique your interest.)
- Who can I speak with to find out more about the majors I am considering?
- What career opportunities will be available to me with this degree?
- What kind of lifestyle do I want to have after college?
Are you interested in either studying Economics or Environmental Studies? Check out these videos to hear from our students and faculty their thoughts on those programs.