As you progress through college, you may start to think about the value of the degree you’ve chosen, the job you want to have after college, and all of the other experiences and skills you want to build for your future job. That’s where a minor comes in.
Depending upon your school and chosen major, a minor may be something that’s easy to tack on and will still allow you to graduate on time. For others, it may add on a semester of work. Some colleges even require students to choose a minor when declaring a major. There are many benefits to going the extra step, such as following your passion, enhancing your major, increasing your chances for employment, amplifying your expertise, and exploring something new.
Follow Your Passion
This is the reason many people get minors that have nothing to do with their majors. If your minor is about following your passion, you might try singing, dancing, theater, a foreign language, yoga, ceramics, or anything else that you want to learn more about. These are unlikely to lead to a job, but they’re enjoyable and they make you more well rounded.
Enhance Your Major
A minor can also act as an enhancer for your major. If you’re interested in becoming a journalist who focuses on environmental issues, consider pairing your journalism major with a minor in environmental studies. Doing so gives you an extra set of skills to add to your knowledge base.
Increase Your Chances
The job market is very competitive, so anything you can add to make yourself stand out will give you a leg up when applying for jobs. A minor can also help you to narrow your focus and find the exact jobs that you want after graduation.
Amplify Your Expertise
A minor can complement your major, making you more of an expert in your field. It helps you to focus in on landing a specific job, but it can also broaden your knowledge horizons.
Explore Something New
This falls in line with following your passions. Your minor doesn’t have to be something that will benefit your career; it can be just something that you find interesting or have always been intrigued to learn more about.
A minor can be a big asset for having the right set of skills and expertise to get hired for the right job, but that doesn’t mean it’s for everyone. Depending on your school and financial situation, a minor can add on a semester’s worth of classes and a large financial burden. That just might not be worth it for some students. If you want to pair it with your major, don’t forget to look for online courses or community college courses that might save you money. Even if you’re not getting a minor, you can still take a few classes or even just one in a new subject that you find interesting or would benefit your major.
For whatever reason you choose, make sure that you’ve thought about the burdens and rewards of adding a minor to your degree plan. As long as you know why you’re giving yourself extra work and financial requirements, it can be a wonderful asset.