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Choosing a major is like choosing a favorite color. You stand and look at a wall of paint chips or colored pencils and pick what calls out to you the most, what makes you happy. Choosing a minor is like that too–except better. You get to pick a secondary color to blend with your first, and when you put them both on the page it creates a masterpiece. We have five reasons why taking on a minor in college is the best decision you can make, in order to make your college education a true masterpiece.

1. It’s an excuse to be able to take the classes you love, while still making a significant accomplishment.

Are you planning to declare a biology major, but your heart keeps calling you to pursue theater? A minor is a quick fix so that you can do your fancy bio lab, while still showing off your talent on the stage! Being able to take classes that you’re passionate about will be a huge stress reliever come midterm and final season when you’re pulling your hair out from all the lengthy nights spent essay writing. Having that creative outlet is important so that you can pursue what your passionate about while managing to stay sane in college, and having those fun classes actually contribute to a secondary degree is just extra incentive.

2. A well-rounded degree prepares you for a well-rounded career.

While adding a minor isn’t a necessity, it might give you a leg up on the competition once you enter the career world. The skills you learn from your minor might just be that extra something an employer is looking for when deciding between two people to hire. You’ll be adding value to your degree by showing off that you have an extra diverse skill and knowledge set that will distinguish you from everyone else. A minor is also a useful resume fluffer, and who wouldn’t want that?

3. A minor is an awesome way to fulfill elective credits.

If you go into college with a bunch of transfer credit from AP’s or classes you took at your community college, you’ll probably be left with a bunch of extra elective credits that don’t count towards general education requirements or your major. Why take a medley of random classes, when instead, you could pick an interesting subject and have the classes all count towards a secondary degree?  Not only is it an opportunity to challenge yourself and explore something new, but you actually get credit for doing it. Too bad the rest of life doesn’t work that way! We would definitely say that using all those elective credits to count towards a minor is a smart idea.

4. Compliment your major and yourself.

Adding a minor will help to bring your major full circle by making up for what it lacks, and also adding an extra element to your subject of choice. If you’re studying English or a foreign language, taking on a linguistics minor will not only make the language learning process easier, but it would give you the knowledge to effectively teach that language to someone else. Marketing majors could benefit from a minor in communications, especially if you plan on becoming an entrepreneur. Every major has a perfect complement that will open up a world of information and experience you might never see if you stay within the confines of your major.

5. You’ll meet people outside of your major classes.

You know those 100+ person lectures where you always have to sit pinned between the guy with his hood on and earbuds in, and that girl who has her eyes glued to her phone? Yeah we know those lectures too, and we know how hard it can be to create meaningful friendships in them. To avoid taking more of those than you can stand, adding a minor is a great idea! This will hopefully land you in smaller classes where the professor facilitates group projects and a lot of class discussion, meaning that you get an extra opportunity to make some new friends!

If you’re adding a minor for fun or because of a creative interest you have, the students in these classes will be able to connect to a side of you that the people in your major might not share an affinity for. Even if you’re taking a minor class that’s a painful requirement, why would say no to having a few more lovely people in your life?

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the author

Gina Escandon is an English major at Cal Poly SLO, who lives vicariously among all the engineers and architects, and spends a lot of time holed up in her room writing for The Prospect or Her Campus. The one true love of her heart is Disneyland, and she one day hopes to live in a nice studio apartment with a bunch of puppies and a Keurig of her very own. Gina is so thrilled to be writing for The Prospect and sharing her semi-useful knowledge with you folks.

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