WE SHOULDN’T REGRET COMMUNICATION MAJORS
I earned a bachelor’s in communication. I’m working towards my master’s in it right now.
And yet, it’s a field that college students notoriously regret upon leaving campus.
According to a survey conducted by ZipRecruiter in late 2022, the following amount of college graduates regret majors in the field:
87% regret journalism
64% regret communications
60% regret marketing management and research
The survey lists other majors too, such as education and political science. But it’s worth sounding the alarm when 3 related majors in the communication field all garner such common contempt from college graduates.
Concerns Are Valid
It’s understandable for people to be hesitant about college. It’s a long-term commitment that affects the rest of your future, both positively and negatively.
But much attention rests on a single major concern: money.
The cost of college has saddled millions of Americans with:
Nearly $2 trillion of student loan debt nationally
An average of 17 years to pay it off
An average of $30,000 in debt per graduate
Little to no wage growth, making debt payments harder
In addition, students can’t bank on relief. President Biden’s plan to forgive some of this debt is currently facing uncertainty from the Supreme Court.
Going into college requires just as much serious consideration as life after college. If you want to buy a house, get married, start a family, or simply have extra income to enjoy your adulthood after graduation, you need to think about what field or career is going to set you up for success.
With that in mind, which field do high school seniors and college students currently think that is, if not something related to communication?
Research done by Niche shows that those finishing high school in 2023 are thinking about majors such as business, nursing, psychology, and medicine.
Fortunately, it isn’t just about money for these young people. They also want a future career that fascinates them and makes them feel good. Many students also switch majors while they’re in college and finding their passions.
With that in mind, it’s still worth considering what communication has to offer as a field.
Communication Still Matters
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There are few fields out there that are as broad and versatile as communication.
We create and consume it all the time. From our text conversations to our favorite Netflix shows to November political ads, communication is always around us. We are constantly sending and receiving messages.
Put simply, communication builds society.
Therefore, communication has a wide variety of niches and applicable careers. Students can take classes in:
Media and journalism
Organizational and corporate communication
And so many more!
Many of these skills apply to some of the more sought after majors. Psychologists and medical practitioners need to be able to effectively communicate with their patients. Businesspeople need to understand advertising, PR, their organizational culture, and their professional relationship with the news media.
All of these skills with building relationships and honing messaging are cornerstones to any successful business or practice.
I have seen this in action and helped to impart it as a teaching intern. As I have been assisting with an undergraduate communication class, many students are not communication majors. Nevertheless, they walk away with more understanding as to how these skills will help them.
More than anything, employers are looking for people who can work in groups, write and speak effectively, and analyze problems. These are all tasks that communication majors encounter, whether taking a class on small group communication or learning and practicing research methods in the social sciences.
Furthermore, this is a field which is rapidly changing and altering our lives, whether students in other majors realize it or not.
New social media pop up and catch fire, creating new influencers and launching people and businesses into stardom. Technological advances like artificial intelligence upend what is real and what is fake online. Politicians hijack online communities for their own gain and power, shaking the foundations of democracy and global norms.
This is a major not just rich in professional and personal skills, but a field that couldn’t apply more to the challenges of our modern world. Yes, college can be expensive and overwhelming. But the knowledge you gain can be immensely valuable, especially in communication.
So take a communication class. Minor in it. Maybe even make it your major.
However communication enters your academic journey, you won’t regret it.