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NCES report: About 80 percent of college students change major at least once

Trying to figure out what you are going to do for the rest of your life during your first year of college can be a daunting task, so at Idaho State University this week, advisors are doing everything they can to help in those decisions.

The goal is to help students make some really important decisions that will impact the rest of their lives.

“So often the students come into the university with a very narrow idea of what it is that they could major in, so I have heard over the years students say ‘I didn’t even realize this major or that major and I have just found where I am going to fit and I really love it,'” said JoAnn Hertz, Academic Advising Director.

Meet Maria Salas.

She’s a freshman from Pocatello who says she thinks she wants to be a nuclear engineer, but she wants to make sure that’s the right choice.

How important is this opportunity for her to talk to the different instructors?

“Super. I never even thought about physics or anything like that and I just spent two minutes over there and I’m already on the fence again.”

This week’s activities have been like a one-stop shop for students to talk to professors and students in all the fields they are thinking about.

“Considering I’m super indecisive obviously so having all this in one helps me kinda compare one thing to the other while it’s in the same room and so if I have any other questions pop up I can just go back over to where that thing was,” said Salas.

During the week, the students have also had the opportunity to meet with future employers from their chosen fields of study. Health professions students meet with doctors and healthcare providers to network, talk to future employers and get advice. James Woods went to physical therapy school at Idaho State University and is now the professional talking to the students

“The one on one coaching, the hands-on displays and the feeling that they are getting the information that they need makes a big difference in the success of each student,” said Woods.

According to the National Center for Education Statistics, about 80 percent of college students change their major at least once.

Nationally many students change their majors as many as six times before they decide on a career. Advisors hope that career weeks like this will help reduce that number.

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