Major Fair assists students looking for a major, minor

Kerry Hammock
Students attending last year’s Major Fair gather information from the various booths. All 171 of BYU’s majors and minors will be represented at this year’s fair. (Kerry Hammock)

There are 171 majors and 108 minors at BYU, and each one will be represented at the university’s 12th annual Major Fair on Wednesday, Oct. 12.

Students are invited to learn about BYU’s various areas of study from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in the Wilkinson Student Center. Booths set up in the the Ballroom and Garden Court will provide information and advice about specific majors.

Karen Evans, University Advisement Center director, said almost 5,000 students came to the fair last year, even though only 2,000 students had yet to declare a major.

“They might be coming to rethink or change their major or add a minor,” Evans said. “A lot of students come to see someone in their major to get advice or to talk to a student, faculty member, or advisor.”

Evans emphasized the importance of getting as much information as possible to make a good decision. She said it’s not good for juniors or seniors to rethink their major and want to start over.

“The sooner students can make decisions as to their major and career, the more effective they are,” Evans said. “Also, the more invested they are in their own performance and education.”

It takes more than completing classes and graduating to succeed, Evans said, because internships, clubs, networking and even student jobs can make a difference.

Jeff Buell, academic and career advisor, assists a student in the process of selecting a major.
Academic and career advisor Jeff Buell assists a student in the process of selecting a major. (Jeff Buell)

“It’s important for them to view it as a total package, rather than just classes, grades, and a major,” Evans said. “We can help them with that.”

Evans said the University Advisement Center understands that picking a major is not easy, and it takes time. The role of the University Advisement Center is to help students to know there are resources and people to help them decide on a major, according to Evans.

Jeff Buell, the academic and career advisor at the Advisement Center, said choosing a major is more than just an event.

“Even though we’re providing an event which is a relaxed setting that students can really research and gather information, we know that it is a process,” Buell said.

BYU freshman Holly Higgins from Pocatello, Idaho, has not declared a major. She only knew of a few careers, including lawyer or doctor, while growing up, Higgins said, and didn’t realize until coming to Provo that many of BYU’s majors even existed.

“It’s kind of like dating, where you don’t really know what’s out there until you start,” Higgins said.

Higgins said the Major Fair is a great opportunity for students like her to see different majors and their students. This could help students decide if they’re a good fit for a particular major, Higgins said.

“In high school, you look for a college that you like and fit into, and then once you’re in college, it’s ‘How can this college now fit me?'” Higgins said. 

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