By Zach Colick
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Tuesday, October 5, 2004
Students who have not chosen a major will have the opportunity to get information on more than 80 majors and to have their questions and concerns answered by department representatives at the Meet Your Major Fair tomorrow.
The symposium will be held at the Student Union Memorial Center from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Bess Ecelbarger, an advising specialist in the University School, home to "undeclared" or "exploratory" students at UA, said the major fair is convenient because representatives from different majors are all gathered in one room.
"The goal for students is to come to one place, at one time, to access information on a lot of different majors in order to get a better understanding of which academic program they want to pursue," Ecelbarger said.
Roxie Catts, a program specialist for molecular and cellular biology, said the purpose of the fair is to get introductory information on majors without having a sit-down advising appointment. She said this information isn't enough to base a decision on.
Geoff Balon, a psychology freshman, said programs like these are a step in the right direction.
"Nobody really tells you what's going on when you're a freshman. You have to go out there and find out yourself," Balon said. "Some students may figure it out on their own, but with 30,000 students, not everyone is going to be a do-it-yourself learner."
Taylor Robertson, an academic advisor for the psychology department, said in order to get the most out of the Meet Your Major Fair, students should take a moment ahead of time to list several questions they want to ask major representatives.
Department representatives said the major fair shouldn't be the determining factor for enrolling students into their programs.
"I have not had a student come up to me personally and say that the Meet Your Major Fair led them to select the psychology major," Robertson said.
Robertson said the department doesn't actively recruit students to the psychology major, but said the psychology booth will have several handouts with information about major requirements as well as information on how to declare the psychology major.
Students at UA said that the Meet Your Major Fair would probably be beneficial for students who are trying to decide on a career path or a major.
Ali Mohr, an undeclared freshman, said she would go to something that would help her explore various majors.
"I feel a program helping me decide on a major would definitely help me out, because I am having a hard time figuring out what I want to focus my studies on and what I want my career to be," Mohr said.
Jenni Pollack, an undeclared sophomore, said she's unsure what direction she wants to head in, considering the wide array of options.
Pollack said that while she thinks a lot of careers might be of interest to her, she often changes her mind when she finds out what's really involved in the major.
Ecelbarger said she's gotten positive feedback from students saying that the Meet Your Major Fair helped them decide which major to pick.
"Programs like this can also open your eyes to a career you otherwise wouldn't have even considered," Pollack said.