There is major controversy concerning whether you should work where your passion lies or where you can be successful. Successful people are often sharing tips on how they have become successful over the years. Some argue that you cannot be successful by following your passion while others disagree and affirm that following our passions is the source of wealth and general life satisfaction. These arguments get to us, especially when selecting university courses we want to pursue. In this article, we will address some key considerations you need to weigh before you switch university courses.
Back to my analogy of what successful people advise, who should you listen to? I think you should listen to yourself. There is an interesting quote, “you only live once but when you do it well enough, then once is enough.” This quote advocate for quality of life and I think it’s an aspect of livelihood that is often overlooked. Probably you are wondering how this relates to switching university courses. I believe that studying something you enjoy always guarantees good results. Consequently, working on something you enjoy improves your productivity. If you have been placed in a course you don’t like, I advise you to switch and pursue something you truly enjoy. In the short term, you will get good grades while in the long term you will land a job you enjoy.
It is a common societal perception that we should pursue courses that guarantee lucrative career positions. As a result, high school graduates are under constant pressure to pursue careers they don’t enjoy in the hope of landing good jobs. They struggle on campus without knowing whether the theoretical knowledge they are studying resonates with the practical requirements of the career field.
Students pursuing reputable courses are respected and ‘feared’ compared to their counterparts pursuing less reputable courses. For example, students pursuing courses such as clinical medicine, actuarial science, computer science, pharmacy, and engineering courses are expected to be more successful in the future compared to those studying B-COM (bachelor of commerce), food science, and diplomas. I am not trying to degrade any course, I’m addressing the societal norm and perception of these courses.
My advice to anyone conforming to societal norms is, identify what works best for you and run after it. Society thinks that pursuing food science will not earn you a prominent spot on the table yet it’s your passion. Instead of pursuing an engineering course you hate and understand nothing about, switch to food science and kick ass. Be wise enough to listen to people’s advice but make your own decision.
My friend’s story
During my campus years, a very close friend my campus years was pursuing a bachelor of commerce degree, finance option. He was following his parent’s wish for him to be a finance expert because a family friend has amassed so much success in the field. The main advantage was that he had his first internship towards the end of the first academic year. But during this internship, he realized that he hated finance and felt trapped because he was practicing something he did not like. Every evening he got home tired and depressed.
During the second year, he decided to switch the university courses from finance to marketing option. He loved marketing and enjoyed every moment for the next two years. His parents later found out that he switched and were very bitter with him. One thing about parents is that they always understand their children. So they accepted but now my friend was on his own because he did not have connections from family friends. Luckily, it all worked out and my friend now holds a senior marketing position in a Nairobi-based insurance company.
It might not always work out for you as it did for my friend. But I believe that pursuing something you enjoy is less frustrating compared to pursuing what other people think is best for you. Doing something you enjoy allows you to think outside the box rather than conforming to the defined conventional professions.
I know earlier on I mentioned that you shouldn’t just study something for the promise of lucrative professions. However, we must acknowledge that envisioning the kind of career you will land is important. For example, let’s say you enjoy marketing. It is important to explore the kind of marketing you enjoy. Is it traditional marketing or digital marketing? Also, which types of products or services do you want to market? Do you want to market insurance or do you want to market products such as cars?
I believe that this is important because it allows you to expand your knowledge base in the area of study. You cannot compare a person who just wants to market any product or service with a professional who understands the dynamics and psychology or marketing services such as insurance or products such as houses or cars. A person with a vision of what they want and what they know is most likely to be more productive.
Probably you are wondering how you can know all this. It’s through experimenting through internships and apprenticeships. This will help you understand the dynamics of the different industries until you know what works best for you. Before you switch your university courses it is important to understand the career your passion will land you.
Switch your University Courses
After you’ve explored these options, you will be able to make a decision whether or not to switch university courses. The main mistake is living a life based on someone else’s script. During our time on campus, we are young, naïve, and often lack experience. On this note, we might make non-strategic decisions that’s why we rely on our parents, guardians, or mentors to make decisions. However, approaching every situation from a sober viewpoint and avoiding basing our decisions on emotion, we are on the right track.
It is easier said than done, but it can be done by making these key considerations. I hope you learned something. Also, check out my article on why you need to go to college. Please share your thoughts in the comment section. Until next time, Adios.