The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News


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COLUMN: It is okay to switch your major

Ashanti Thomas

I have been at Eastern since the Fall of 2019. Yeah, I know, a long time it feels like. In that time, I have gone to college before and after COVID-19, went through teacher strikes, and changed my major three times.

I want to preface this, but it is not because I am indecisive, which is completely fine if you are.

When I applied to Eastern back in the Fall of 2018, during the start of my senior year of high school, I applied as an English Major. In January of 2019, I got my acceptance letter.

All I had ever wanted to do was write a book or become published in some way, shape, or form. Which eventually happened as you are reading my published work.

Now, during the summer of 2019, while I was packing for my freshman year of college, some events happened. For some reason, there is this stigma where people will tell English Majors they cannot get a “real job.” The same thing happens to Art Majors and frankly, it is just so weird to me.

Even so, after hearing the same thing over and over, I ultimately decided to become a Special Education Major. My first major change and I had not even walked through a single college classroom.

I stayed as a Special Ed Major for two years and I loved it. Sadly, some unfortunate events transpired, and I felt that, in a way to preserve my mental health, I needed to make another change I did not want to make.

Even two and a half years later, I still get sad that I had to make that choice and leave a major I came to love.

I love working with people who have special needs and to my extreme luck, I currently work as a substitute teacher which allows me to consistently.

The day I left the department, I entered the Elementary Education Major. I was still set on being an educator even if did not mean being in the classroom I wanted to. I stayed until my first semester of my senior year. Yes, I left when all I needed was one more semester.

I had spent three and a half years working hard for a degree in education of some sort and realized, I was not happy.

I was not happy where I was mentally and all I could think about was how I chose a major based on the fact that I listened to other people. I had let other people cloud my judgment and make me feel like I could not do what I truly wanted to do.

In January of 2023, I changed my major again. You guessed it, back to English. Four years after my initial acceptance letter to Eastern.

You are probably wondering why I am telling this story. It is because there are always people who decide their majors because of other people or think they cannot change if they are unhappy. I am here to tell you that is untrue.

It is okay to change your major. It is okay to realize you are unhappy with where you are. College is hard and life is harder, why make yourself miserable because of other people?

Overall, I wrote this to show you, it is okay. It is okay to be a super senior, it is okay to keep making major changes, it is okay to leave something that makes you unhappy, it is okay to be you. Take it from someone who took finally took the leap.

Kierstyn Budz can be reached at [email protected] or 217-581-2812.

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About the Contributors
Kierstyn Budz, Columnist
Kierstyn Budz is a senior English major. This is her first year at The News. 
Ashanti Thomas, Photo Editor
Ashanti Thomas is a senior digital media major. She previously served as photo editor and assistant photo editor at The News.

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