This blog post has been written by Patrick O’Brien, author of Making College Count.
If choosing a college major isn’t tough enough, what about a minor? Minors are not available in all programs, but where they are offered, they open one more opportunity for you to differentiate your academic record from those of your classmates.
The greatest impact of a minor is that it allows you to demonstrate your interest and proficiency in more than one subject. If you’re a Computer Science major with an Ecology minor, you project a very different image than if you took only technical courses. The Ecology minor tells prospective employers that you can do much more than crunch code.
In addition, a college minor says something important about effort, one of the key winning characteristics that employers seek in potential employees. Making the effort to complete a minor, and especially to earn a solid GPA in that minor, sends the signal that you’re serious about your education and about achievement. Any employer would be impressed with the discipline required to succeed in both a major and a minor.
Selecting the right minor should incorporate several factors. First, pick one that you’re willing to work hard to master. Second, consider minors that will make you more valuable in the job market. And finally, creating a contrast between your major and minor is also desirable. If your major is British Lit, a minor in Education, Economics, or Physics suggest a more well-rounded background than a minor in American Lit.
You can also use a minor to make a non-technical major more valuable. For instance, if your major is Management, you will compete against other students in your major for jobs. If you have a minor in Computer Science, Physics, or another technical field, you will be much more attractive to firms in those specific fields. And once you’re on the job, you’ll require less training and should have a greater chance for success.
Minors may sound minor, but they’re not.
It’s no longer enough to just “go” to college; you need a winning game plan to graduate and create great career opportunities for your future. The proven Making College Count approach to college success can help! Learn more about Making College Count here.