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View Full Version : Help me decide what I want to do with my life.



Isolated Fury
02-08-2007, 06:03 AM
Right now I'm majoring in secondary English education. I don't want to anymore, though. I love the English language. I just can't make it a career. However, I have a thought. I'm considering changing my major to German. I don't know why, but I feel like it would make me happy.

Does anyone know what the job market is for a German major and if this is a smart move?

Zeall
02-08-2007, 06:11 AM
Right now I'm majoring in secondary English education. I don't want to anymore, though. I love the English language. I just can't make it a career. However, I have a thought. I'm considering changing my major to German. I don't know why, but I feel like it would make me happy.

Does anyone know what the job market is for a German major and if this is a smart move?

IMO i think it's best to do whatever makes you happy, that's what i did, but just make a plan, if you do plan to change, asses what you will be doing in a year, and then even further down the line, because without goals in front of you, it'll be much harder to go down the right path for you.

this is my opinion, and i'm sure others here will have opposite views from me, but in the end, it's all up to you

the_GoDdEsS
02-08-2007, 06:31 AM
I'm a double major English/German with a minor in teaching. First of all, what's your experience with the German language, because as we all know it's not exactly easy for most people. As a graduate (in a different country however) I can tell you your options would mostly consist of teaching or translating (which is not bad if you have your own clients), but that does not mean you're limited to this only. Many people do completely different things than they studied.

Isolated Fury
02-08-2007, 06:54 AM
I only have experience with German from high school, which I know isn't that glamorous, but I caught on extremely quickly and was much more advanced than anyone in my classes. I find it to be very similar to English, so it comes very easily to me.

I wouldn't mind translating. I think it'd be fun, pending firearms aren't involved. And I have thought about it, and I realized I'd much rather teach German than English. Like I said, I just don't see making English a career.

the_GoDdEsS
02-08-2007, 07:04 AM
I always thought German was piss easy while everyone else was struggling with it. I only realised how difficult it is when I started teaching it and saw what the people have to go through. So with German you'd have a bigger challenge both as a learner and a teacher, but it's certainly a better option than just your own language.

But with translating I warn you, if you take classes in translating it's horrible. Translating is only fun when you're familiar with the area you're translating in and have some relation to it. Otherwise it can be either boring to wade through dictionaries or frustrating to struggle with the correct expressions.

Isolated Fury
02-08-2007, 07:16 AM
Then I don't know what I want to do.

the_GoDdEsS
02-08-2007, 07:24 AM
No big deal, people graduate and still don't know what they want to do exactly. But I support the decision to go with something along with the English. Would give you more career options.

Zeall
02-08-2007, 07:33 AM
Then I don't know what I want to do.

Well, even if you are still unsure, this has been a productive topic, you have asked about something you may consider doing, and had an extremely detailed explanation of what may be in store for you if you do.

JoY
02-08-2007, 07:58 AM
if you're this unsure (& it's good that you know you're unsure & don't just impulsively start studying what seems the best option at the time), maybe it'd be better if you straighten things out a little bit first. maybe traveling a little? hah, why not to Germany while you're at it. to me it kinda sounds like you could use a small break just to get away from everything for a while, so you may drop everything you don't need that's occupying your mind, to find out what your instincts & knowledge of yourself are telling you about what you want.

man, such hippy-talk coming from someone sober. *shakes head at self* dismiss & ignore my entire post, if it doesn't apply to you, okie? because there's no doubt in my mind that whatever advice you recieve, you know best what's best for you.

Whiplash
02-08-2007, 08:39 AM
Dude, just give it up already. Its lame.:mad:

Mota Boy
02-08-2007, 09:02 AM
Especially since this appears to be more of a whim than anything else, I'd suggest you strongly reconsider majoring an a language. In the US, your career path would be extremely limited, with German teacher being your most likely bet. And, with the way that the educational system works in this country, you'd have to go to graduate school or beyond if you wished to teach at the high school or college level. You won't have the necessary background to ensure a job in either government work or the private sector, as whatever benefit you may have by being able to speak German will be offset by your lack of a business background and the fact that most every German that does business with the US speaks excellent English.

If you enjoy it and excel in it, I'd suggest minoring in it. German is considered a difficult language, and so doing well in it might look good to potential employers, as well as boosting your G.P.A. and making you a generally more interesting person. What year are you? Is this your second semester freshman year? If so, I'd suggest trying to fill out your basic requirements next semester, taking the general-interest courses that sound the most interesting to you and hopefully one of those will really spark something.

Whiplash
02-08-2007, 09:12 AM
So what happened when I was gone?

Well, you made another account.

JohnnyNemesis
02-08-2007, 10:18 AM
I don't have much more to add than what's already been said, but I believe ilovellamas majors in the cultural aspects of German and shit. She won't be around for awhile, but you should try getting in touch with her anyway and see what she thinks of it and how it relates to what you might want to pursue.

JoY
02-08-2007, 10:25 AM
better yet, she's in Austria as we speak, bringing her awesome knowledge into practice.

Isolated Fury
02-08-2007, 11:36 AM
Mota Boy - I'm second year second semester. It's a little late to be thinking any of this.

Everyone else - Haha. I really don't know what I want to do. One part of me is saying that if it makes me happy, I should do it. The other part is reminding me of the restriced employment. I don't know. Haha, any suggestions?

JohnnyNemesis
02-08-2007, 11:45 AM
In many cases, you get jobs more through social networks and connections than what you're actually major in. Careers are a different story, naturally, but I'm majoring in a field I know will leave me career-less just because I know I could either be miserable as an undergrad and MAYBE get a job, or I could be happy with what I'm studying and still only MAYBE get a job. I am building those networks though.

But again, like I said, it all depends on the difference between job and career, it depends on region, how strong the connections you build are, etc. Just try to build those networks either way because you're usually totally boned without 'em.

Isolated Fury
02-08-2007, 11:48 AM
My family has really strong ties to our state government. That's as much "building of a network" as I've got right now.

JohnnyNemesis
02-08-2007, 11:51 AM
Well, you have that as backup, and almost two years left at college to build relationships with professors, administrators, etc. Try to balance it all out. I'm sorry I can't offer more help with actually choosing a major, but I think building these relationships helps everything balance out somewhat.

Isolated Fury
02-08-2007, 12:03 PM
You're helping. Don't worry.

You're helping me a lot more than I'm helping myself.

Mota Boy
02-08-2007, 02:43 PM
Mota Boy - I'm second year second semester. It's a little late to be thinking any of this.Bah, it's never too late. In fact, one of my roommates in college switched majors no less than three times before ultimately dropping out of school with nothing to show for it aside from tens of thousands of dollars in debt.

Again, I'd suggest avoiding a major with limited job opportunities unless you're certain it's what you want to do with your life. As for what you do want to do, just put a fair amount of time into it. Obviously you won't get an answer in one afternoon, but you don't have to make any tough decisions for a few more months. Hell, you have until August or September before you solidify your schedule for next semester.

My best general advice is simply to study what you enjoy at the present and what you think will make you happy in the future. Switching majors may be difficult, but don't let that scare you into feeling like you have to settle with something you don't enjoy - you'll end up regretting it, even if you might need to tack on an extra semester or so. What I'd do if I were you is talk to professors and other adults about it - not only will it help you build up a network as Ricky suggested, but it will give you a much clearer picture of what your options are in majoring in various subjects, and what options you have for grad school, if that's an option at all.

Tizzalicious
02-09-2007, 12:56 AM
I think if you really think studying German would make you happy, you should, but do think about about what Sim said first, if you wouldn't want to teach, try translating before you make a decision, it's much harder than you think, and also a whole lot less fun. I always thought it would be what I wanted to do, and that I'd be good at it, but I can't translate for shit, and I don't like it either.

the_GoDdEsS
02-09-2007, 01:10 AM
I also don't know what kinda system you people have. In Slovakia if you want to study the German language, you have to be rather good at it before you enter uni, since all of the classes are in German. You don't learn the language per se, you learn the linguistic disciplines in German and the literature. There's a very wide range of things here. When I studied German in Berlin, they just concentrated either on literature or on linguistics.

Since you're in your second year, I suggest you have a real close look at the study programme of German or eventually discuss it with someone directly there. Then you decide.

JoY
02-09-2007, 09:26 AM
I think if you really think studying German would make you happy, you should, but do think about about what Sim said first, if you wouldn't want to teach, try translating before you make a decision, it's much harder than you think, and also a whole lot less fun. I always thought it would be what I wanted to do, and that I'd be good at it, but I can't translate for shit, and I don't like it either.

that just made me go all; "aw" & want to ruffle your red hair.