It’s not just about earning a degree; it’s about earning a degree to start a career you will love
Starting college doesn’t necessarily mean you’re certain of what you want to major in, or what career you’re aspiring to. Nearly 25% of all Marian University students are undecided and enter as an undeclared major – it’s completely normal and something we’re prepared to walk you through as you advance through college.
Maybe you are the first in your family to attend college. Perhaps you have a few paths in mind but need help deciding. Just know that Marian is going to be by your side and guide you step-by-step.
We’ll start by having you meet with your undeclared major advisor and our Career Services experts. One of the first assessments you will complete is the Strong Interest Inventory. Your responses allow us to identify the introductory classes – not just electives – we think will work well for you to start and map out your academic path.
After your first year, if you want more time to decide, great – we want you to succeed, which is why we offer flexibility and ease when it comes to switching majors multiple times. The ultimate goal is to keep you on-track to graduate.
Marian will help you find a program that matches your values, interests, and goals.
CASE – Center for Academic Support and Excellence
CASE is ready to assist undeclared majors in making academic or career decisions. Our professional advisors will help you:
- Understand the purpose and value of general education as part of the college experience
- Learn the basics of university academic requirements, policies, and procedures
- Choose a major compatible with your interests, abilities, and goals
- Participate in programs, information sessions, and assessments to guide you in choosing what careers interest you.
- Strong Interest Inventory
- Resource Library
- Strengths Assessment
- Shadow Program
- Academic Information
- Collaboration with the Career Services Office
Your Journey to Selecting a Major
As your Marian advisor walks with you during your journey to selecting a major, how you answer these questions may provide clarity.
What are you passionate about?Do you like working with numbers or like the thought of helping people? Maybe working for the government or a non-profit appeals to you. Would you rather work alone, or do you prefer working with teams? Marian University is a school where you can make a difference in this world by earning any major.
Have you explored your options?Perhaps a family member or mentor has a job you are interested in. Maybe you had a summer job at a company that intrigued you. Maybe you had a job you didn’t like. Let your advisor know so they can guide you.
Do you have a job goal?You can have a long and successful career in many professions by earning a bachelor’s degree. Teaching, nursing, accounting, sports management, and graphic design are some options. Putting your long-term plan in place sometimes requires education beyond a bachelor’s. If you want to become a doctor, pharmacist, nurse practitioner, or psychologist, these are professions that require graduate school (beyond a bachelor’s degree). Your advisor will help you select the courses that make you a strong candidate on your graduate school application (in four years, of course).
Are you good at this subject?
Did good grades come easy for you in certain subjects? Did one of your high school teachers influence you more than others? Inspiration may come from these answers.
Why do you want to be in this major?
What is influencing you to narrow down your list of options? Maybe you know you want to work in a hospital but don’t understand the differences between nursing, social work, the cytology lab, or the radiology department. Or maybe the corporate world is calling your name but is it the marketing team, the accounting department, or the finance division that attracts you? We can help!
Frequently Asked Questions
Being undecided about your major can be a good thing – try not to worry. Giving yourself time to explore various fields of study through electives and required courses will help you identify the path you want and begin the journey toward achieving your definition of success. The average college student changes their major at least three times! Take comfort in knowing our electives and required courses will expose you to countless areas of study to help narrow down your desired profession or career interest.
We have an academic advisor who solely works with undeclared major students and who truly cares about your education and career path. This advisor will work with you to help you learn through a system of self-assessment, occupational research, and decision-making skills that will help you narrow down your choices. Career inventories are also useful tools to help identify career interests. Your advisor will help you learn about the majors and minors we offer.
Learn About an Undeclared Major
Mary Hatlen, advisor for undeclared majors and Director of Career Services, explains the path and guidance available for those with an undeclared major at Marian. You will receive help learning about the best major for you through career assessments, personal assistance, workshops and events, and advising sessions. One project will be to develop your four-year career plan. Every freshman is offered a one-week externship that will allow you explore different career options.
With 40+ majors, we offer direct entry into nearly everyone, meaning that once you choose a major, you are in that major immediately. Some schools may make you wait to see if they have a spot for you. Start exploring your area of interest on Day 1 and declare your major when you’re ready. Being undeclared is a great way to start, and our education is designed to help you stay on-track and graduate on-time.
What are general education courses?
As a bachelor’s level student, you are required to take about 30 credits of general education courses as part of the 120 credits required for a bachelor’s degree. Gen eds are required regardless of major. Taking general education courses your first semester allows you time to select a major.
All students take 10.5 to 17 credits in these areas:
- Mathematical Reasoning
- Argumentative and Research Writing
- Introduction to Christian Theology
- Interpersonal Communication
- Introduction to Ethical Reasoning
- First Year Studies
For a list of all degrees and courses offered at Marian University, please view the Academic Bulletin.