College minors are often misconceived as not being valuable to your bachelor’s degree. This notion, however, is not the case, especially in an increasingly competitive job market. College minors can be a strong supplement to your major area of study, and can help you in your job search and career development.
College majors and minors
Unlike your chosen college major, minors are not required for each program you are in.
Your major is your primary area of study. You could choose to only have major, but if you want a secondary area of study, a minor, the choice is yours. But having a college minor could be useful to your major, in that it extends the scope of your area of study, which could help with career development. Your could also minor in a specific subject you are passionate about, that doesn’t have to related to your major at all. In short, college minors can serve many practical and personal purposes. It can provide you with skills that could help your job resume, or help you deepen your understanding in a subject of interest.
The Benefits of a College Minor
There are several instances in which minors can be beneficial to students. For one, minors can help in career development. Say a history major is interested in teaching, and knows she wants to earn her Teaching Credential in the future. Minoring in education as an undergraduate student would not only provide her with an introduction to education as a field, but also be a strong supplement to her major because of her desire to teach. A minor in education prepares her for admission into other teacher certification programs, while also providing a background for other professional vehicles.
Another reason for choosing a college minor is to help understand the breadth of your specific major. San Francisco State University requires all undergraduate journalism majors to select a non-journalism minor. The SFSU Bulletin states that “because the practice of journalism requires an understanding of larger social, political and cultural issues in society, the program requires students complete a minor in a liberal arts or science discipline.” This can include minoring in political science, English, psychology so that students can complement their major with knowledge from another discipline. In this case, having a minor to supplement the journalism major can help students specify their area of focus when they enter the journalism or publishing field. This area of specialization could be valuable to employers once graduates begin their job search.
A strong option for minor subjects is in foreign languages, especially if you are working in a city or metropolitan area with a large ethnic group present, such as in Miami or Los Angeles. Having knowledge of another language leverages your own resume, and could lead to more job opportunities. A business minor has become increasingly popular as well. The minor can provide training and background in the business field, helping students make their career development more flexible. Having a secondary area of study could enhance your resume and give you an added edge over other candidates in the job market.
Should you decide to minor in a subject, and make sure you are committed to both your major and minor courses. Always use available college resources to help clarify any questions regarding the programs, as academic planning is important in completing both your college major and minor. If not for career purposes, students can always choose to minor in order to learn more about a field they are interested in, which doesn’t have to be related to their primary college major at all. Any available combination of majors and minors can be selected, so long as you know what is required to complete the both programs.