I just spent a hour or 2 looking at classes and the general information for the major, sustainability agriculture and food systems, and I just feel a bit overwhelmed because now I don’t know if I want to transfer or am really suited for this major any more than I am for food science. I have no…
PizazzJas, I thought the tumblr name was PizzaJas for the longest time ever. Truth be told, that is what I thought tbt meant too. All joking aside, no one ever knows what the future has in store. Plan or no plan, something will await for you and your time to make a decision will come. When you do decide, do not regret it. Perhaps, you don’t need advice from me considering that the only knowledge you know of me is that I am passionate about food, especially fungi. If you want to take my advice, I am going to leave it here such that you can peruse about your decision.
A counselor, by title and job responsibility, is suppose to help you with your choices. True, you may not know what you want to do or what you like, but it is in your best interest to seek for help, especially when the helper is being paid to do so. Use your resources. However, as is the case with our department, the counselors are spread thin and do not have much time for helping you choose your path. Unfortunately, that is a shame for the majority of students. Truly, it is. So, I suggest you go to the sustainability counselor and ask her/him questions. Come up with questions prior to the meeting. Send an email and schedule an appointment. Ask about what job opportunities are available or what a schedule would look like or what one does in such a major. You can go into details with the counselor such as what you like or don’t like and see if it is fitting for you. At least, you will come out armed with knowledge to make a better decision. Follow up with asking professors and students of both majors what they do, their passions, their goals, how they got to where they are now. What matters more are the people who you will see more often. If you do not like interacting with the food science students, don’t stay. You will be put into situations where you will work with them for projects and classwork. If you don’t like that type of atmosphere they bring, then it is time to move elsewhere.
If you still don’t know, you still have another year to make a decision before transferring majors. Continue with your pre-reqs and take the opportunity of attending or auditing a class in either major. Do you like the professor, the lecture, the setting? No? Then, maybe it is time to change majors. You enjoy it immensely? Stay put and maybe make the other option a minor.
Don’t doubt yourself. You learned a lot about who you are and what you don’t like over your freshman year. You still learn more about you on a daily basis. An answer will not come to you, set in stone. Don’t rush it. Direction is something you have to take. Ask for some directions, if you really need help. No matter how long it takes, you will end up at your destination with fond memories or foul. Is that not what makes life an adventure worth traveling?
Worry a little, but keep going. No one will judge you if you change majors. No one will judge you if you stay. You are entitled to your own decision. Do not let anyone, especially you, hold you back. If you do not know what to do, try something out and figure if you like it or not. Try it out two or three times. Whatever suits your fancy.Try everything, if that is who you are. Take opportunities when you see fit. Talk to people. As long as you don’t sit back and worry. A plan will come about, eventually. Just make mistakes now.
At one point in my life, my freshmen year of winter quarter was a low point. I was homesick, heartbroken, frustrated and lost. I didn’t know if food science was right for me. I opted for food science as my second choice, after nutrition. I was put into food science, not really knowing what it is or what I could do with it. I was sitting at the park next to cuarto dorms. I was talking to my neighbor and dear friend wondering if I should transfer out of Davis. I didn’t know whether the school was what I liked. I didn’t know if food science was really my expertise. Her words were firm and caring which made me thought about how my character is revealed in times of trouble, how being lost does not mean I should run away from the problem. I would be leaving her and all my new found friends. I would be leaving opportunities that would have been given to another person. She is right. I didn’t have a back up plan. I didn’t know what to do with my life and I was going to run away from it. So, I decided to stick it out and do everything food science related. I was a sensory panelist that allowed me to become a sensory research assistant. I worked for my former boss who hired me on after I graduated for a quarter. I took classes and made friends. I attended different networking events. I put myself out there and tried to figure out what I wanted to do. In the mean time, I had fun and I made the best out of my experiences. I learned from my mistakes and I continued onward. When I graduated, I still had no clue what I wanted to do. Hell, I turned down a job that offered me $21/hr, plus overtime potential and this was a job in the East Bay. I turned down a 5 year contract with a Japanese university where I get a free 2 years Master’s and 3 year contract with a Japanese company all while getting a stipend. I ended up working for my former boss for the FST department. That led to me being hired by the professor of the class as a junior specialist. That in turn, led me to audit a flavor chemistry class which I loved. I got a position at a reputable company, went to IFT in New Orleans, took a flavor interactions class and loved flavor related stuff more and started work as a QA Tech at a subsidiary of a flavor and ingredients company. I didn’t get to see the flavor house, but I was hoping to jump shift and reach that position. I didn’t know what life had in store for me and I was scared when I turned down these safer and better options. I lived with my choices, sometimes bitterly, but most of the time, I just continued living. So, this story ties back to living and making choices. Something will always come up, even if you think you made the wrong choice. There is no wrong answer in your life, just choices that you decide is right or wrong. You can’t change the past, but you can change for the future.
I, eventually, quit the QA tech job because I hold different moral standards and you should not compromise your integrity as a person for any outcome. It took me an extra month playing politics before leaving and it left me pretty beat. I learned more about what I truly believe and I would have never otherwise known that, granted I didn’t experience a similar situation or setting. I came to understand that I much prefer graduate school, first, than to go through industry and work my way up. I chose my path and lived with it, although somewhat riskier, but I have a better idea of what I want to do with my life. If I didn’t go through these experiences, I would have never known. So, much in the same way, you can learn a lot from your opportunities, be it talking to others in a particular field or experiencing something else.
I wish you well on your journey. If you cannot decide now, or in the future, do something and stick to it. I did and I am in a place that makes me happy, albeit poor. That is a different story as I believe in investments for the future. I would be able to pay off debts as soon as I am able to invest in myself now.