Final exam for 12th grade student is just around the corner. I can’t help but recollecting as much as memories of what I experienced in my last year of high school. Six years ago, I was a confused 12th grade student, not having any idea of what major that I’d choose in college. I used to say that I’d choose english literature just because english was one of the subjects that I was kind of doing good at, besides math. I hadn’t done enough research to get to know more of all majors available in my alma mater so my judgement was solely based on what subject that I was doing good at, not on what major that I was interested to learn more or to pursue a career in it. So I decided to gather as much as information of what major that my alma mater offered and discussed it with my dad. Long story short, I chose to study animal science.
When I thought my confusion was already cleared, some people came up with questions like “what are you going to do with that?” or worse, “why didn’t you chose a more popular major?”. I didn’t even bother to think of the answer though, but I knew what they meant when they asked me that. I mean, I’m not stupid enough to read between the lines. Is there anyone here who happened to experience the same thing, or am I just a little too sensitive?
When people knew that I studied in UGM, they’re like “wow that’s great!” but when they asked my major, they’re not as excited as they were before. It seems like there’s a general consensus that certain subjects at university are more respectable and often associated with smart students, and will yield a high salary upon graduation, which pretty much shows that a large portion of people who frequently asked me are much too focused on money and prestige. Well, it’s totally okay if high salary become your main factor in choosing your college major, I mean, in the end we try to earn money with our degree. But it’s never okay to look down upon other people’s major just because it’s less popular or not as prestigious as your major. Choosing a college major is not about choosing which one is more prestigious than the other. It’s about choosing what you have interest in and have a chance to develop yourself in it. Studying in college is not always about increasing knowledge. It’s also about sharpening your logical thinking.
Being a student of animal science, sometimes I can easily feel how some people look down upon my major because they think it’s not a difficult subject, or even why it really matters, and assuming that all I do is just raising cattle and feeding them. Well people always assume about everything the same way they assume that art and design students is just about painting nice picture or selling their paintings. But you know, that’s just one of many, many options. Like animal science, it’s not just about raising cattle and producing beef and milk. The source of fat and protein that we eat on daily basis are pretty much the products of animal science. Where do you think all the milk, eggs, cheese, steak, corned beef, sausage that you consume on your daily life come from?
I believe that every major has its own challenge and is equally important. That’s pretty insulting when people just look down upon other majors without really knowing about what others are learning. But unfortunately academic snobbery will always exist. Those who are quick to judge a subject that they have little to no understanding is a reflection of their own ignorance and close-mindedness.
Choosing a college major can be overwhelming especially when we’re already sold on the idea that the rest of our adult life is determined on that choice, but actually it’s not a life sentence. In fact, many graduates find jobs that have nothing to do with what they studied in college. You don’t only gain knowledge in college since you also developed your personal skill. In the end, why would you look down upon people’s degree or jobs when we’re all essensially just working to fulfill our needs and to pay our bills?