Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Give-a-Way on Another Site

Over at http://www.seattlestevie.com/ there is a giveaway for a free gift card to CSN, a network of online stores. All you have to do to enter is to leave a comment saying what you'd like to win, so go check it out.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Friday's Comment of the Week

This week's comment was on the post Choosing a Major. Kristen wrote:

"as someone who had picked a major (finance) based on the availability of jobs post-graduation, i'm almost inclined to say that the more important thing is to study something that you like. i know plenty of people who are going into finance who majored in areas like international politics or goverment.

but great post!



Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Are Colleges Too Liberal?

One thing that you will witness a lot in college is people who are very outspoken about their views, whether religious, political, or ethical in nature. However, depending on your school and the location, some views may appear more prominent than others. Unfortunately, its hard to tell whether that's because more people hold those views, or because they are just more outspoken about them. Its even possible that people who hold one view are too afraid to speak up because they are in the minority.

Colleges are known for being extremely liberal. I go to school in a very conservative area and yet, most of the professors I know are liberal democrats, and many students are, at most, conservative democrats. Of course there are exceptions, and they tend to be very open about it. Still, the College Democrats have a much easier time staying active than the College Republicans.

A site called Campus Reform encourages students to take back their schools, and make them more conservative. While I belive that colleges should be places where there is a healthy debate on many topics, and permitting one over the other is a perfect way to discourage such debate, I'm not sure this website is going about it in the right way. Of course, encouraging debate might not be their goal. It seems like they want schools to favor conservatism above liberalism, not a healthy balance of the two.

There are a lot of related topics in a debate like this, so look for more posts on the topic. And, as always, I want to hear what your opinions are.
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Monday, January 17, 2011

Choosing a Major

It's Time to Pick a Major!

Are you starting to freak out because you haven't selected a major? It's time to stop just thinking about it and actually take some action. Here are some useful tips to help you choose a major:

  • College alumni network: Ask alumni what they majored in and what types of jobs their degrees qualified them for. Are they glad they selected their particular major? Was the degree program difficult? If they had to do it all over again, would they select the same major?
  • Career counselor: Your college's career center has counselors who can help you with this important decision. They may suggest some books and offer some self-assessment tools. They'll set up meetings with faculty members who can answer questions and provide advice about specific majors.
  • Preview classes: Sit in on a few classes in the majors that interest you.
  • Changing colleges: If you can't find the right major at your current college, you may have to transfer to another school. Selecting a major is an important life decision, so don't choose an uninteresting major just so you can hang out with your college friends. There are plenty of websites on the Internet that provide lists of majors and the colleges that offer them.
  • Hot jobs: Ask career counselors for a list of the hot jobs at your college's career fairs. Find out which college degrees are sought after by employers visiting the campus. You may find something that interests you.
  • Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS): Check out the Bureau of Labor Statistics website. Take a look at the employment projections web page, which provides projections for a wide variety of jobs. You can search by education, training, or occupation. The website offers employment growth projections, salaries, and other useful information for many jobs. The Subject Area tab lets you access the employment and the pay and benefits categories, and these include a lot of useful subcategories. The Publications tab includes the occupational outlook quarterly, the occupational outlook handbook and career guides.

Useful Websites

Here's a list of useful websites to help students choose a major:

College Board provides information about majors as well as career profiles.

My Majors provides information on an array of majors. It includes descriptions of different career fields and the possible areas of specialization within each field.

Occupational Information Network offers a skills search activity that lets students identify their skills and match them to potential occupations.

Career OneStop; Career Infonet includes occupation information and state-based information about growing fields, trends, and other useful information.

What Can I Do With This Major? is a website that helps students connect majors with careers.

Choosing the right major is important. If you haven't decided on one yet, take some action!

Brian Jenkins is an expert on education topics. He contributes content to BrainTrack's guide to choosing a college degree program.
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Monday, January 10, 2011


I don't want to graduate.

Next Tuesday will be the first day of my last semester as an undergrad. I will have managed to complete a four-year degree in... four years. And somehow, it doesn't feel right. I feel as though i should have stayed longer, tried for some harder classes, had a full-time job while I was in College. Maybe dated a little more.

But on the other hand, I can't complain too much about how things have gone. I went to a school I loved, found a great boyfriend, joined a fantastic sorority, choose a major that will be useful to what I want to do, and made great friends, whom I hope I will never drift away from.

And on top of that it will be great to be done with college, even if I do take more undergrad classes. I'll have my own apartment, which means that all of my belongings will be consolidated into one location instead of at two ends of the state, and I won't have to move once a year. On top of that I will find a job and start making progress towards acheiving my dream.

Still, considering  all of those things, I'm still not ready. I don't even know if I'll be able to find a decent job, one that will allow me to afford an apartment and living expenses. Living in the dorms has kind of been a sheltered experience. I never had to worry about food, I was on my mom's health insurance, and I could bum rides from friends any time I  needed to go somewhere not in walking distances. I also am unsure if my classes really prepared me for real life. All my teachers meant well, I have no doubt, but everything seems so theoretical.

Either way, I know I'll make it out in the real world alive. And I do still have one semester to prepare.