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College Major Woes

Waffles or whateverWaffles or whatever Previously known as, I shit you not, "Waffen"Registered User regular
edited January 2011 in Help / Advice Forum
I've been going to college now for since 2008. After failing to get into a military academy (Didn't have the connections) I went to Illinois State as a hopeful Social Studies Teacher for the middle school level (preferably). My first semester I didn't do so well (2.5 GPA) because I was in that phase of adjusting between the High School and College level academics. The following semester I did a lot better and managed to raise my cumulative GPA to 2.68. My academic adviser at the time encouraged me to apply to the history department so that I could start working on higher level courses history while raising my GPA. In between there I missed a semester due to military service obligation and returned the following spring semester. When I returned I got my GPA .8 higher than the minimum for the major at the time (2.7). However, the GPA requirement raised to 3.0. This semester was a pretty tough semester and I only increased my maximum cumulative GPA to 2.85.

Basically I'm starting to worry. I'm not in my intended major and am now a junior at my school and time is running out. After this semester I will have finished all of my gen eds and need to pick a minor after the spring semester. I don't really know of a minor that goes well with History other than Education. While I how worthless history degrees are I don't want to be stuck with college debt with a deadbeat job. I started to look around my state and discovered a few colleges that have a lower GPA requirement and a few out of state colleges also have a lower GPA requirement. Some are even ranked higher than my college (Illinois State) for education programs. I was starting to think about applying to a different school to transfer, however, I hit a hic up there. I contracted with my school's Military Science department to Commission as an officer. I'm not exactly sure how they'll feel should I decide to transfer schools. I will graduate as a 2nd LT, but getting active duty as a guaranteed job is a risk because the demand for Reserve/Guard Officers is much greater than the demand for active duty officers. For the year I commission the possibility of getting active duty versus reserve duty is all up in statistics and is to far away to judge whether I'll get it or not. Should I get stuck in the reserves however I'd prefer to have a strong career in the civilian world to fall back on.

At this point I'm not really sure what to do other than keep trying to improve my GPA. No matter how much time I put into studying I always average out with an A, solid Bs, and usually a C in a weaker course. I haven't told ROTC my dilemma yet because we aren't on the best of terms (Cadet drama) and I prefer not to have my day ruined by a pissed off NCOIC or Recruiting Officer. Especially that RO. I've also talked to a few friends. A few of them encouraged me to transfer, others say to change the major (A little to late for that), and others say work on the GPA. While I know I'll graduate with a 3.0+ I'm afraid that the 2.5 might've done me in that first semester and I won't have time to raise the GPA up. I guess I'm asking what would you guys recommend.

Waffles or whatever on

Posts

  • Casually HardcoreCasually Hardcore Once an Asshole. Trying to be better. Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Your goal is still to become a teacher, right?

    Casually Hardcore on
  • Waffles or whateverWaffles or whatever Previously known as, I shit you not, "Waffen" Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Your goal is still to become a teacher, right?

    Yes.

    Waffles or whatever on
  • ED!ED! Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Why is it too late to change the major? If you want to get out in EXACTLY four years - sure I understand that; however I'd rather get out in 5 or 6 years, and be placed well for future job prospects, than limp over the finish line to a job market that I may not be competitive for.

    ED! on
    "Get the hell out of me" - [ex]girlfriend
  • MrMonroeMrMonroe Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    There is not a whole hell of a lot of "competition" in the job market for middle school teachers, unless you want to teach a popular subject (depends on the region) or you want to teach at a private school.

    It sounds like you need a higher GPA to get into the History program? Even if you can raise it enough in the next semester, you'll be stuck trying to fill out the requirements of that major in one year, which will absolutely kill your GPA.

    Keep working, stick it out with your current major, and keep the grades up.

    Good luck facing down middle schoolers, I do not envy you in the slightest.

    MrMonroe on
  • Waffles or whateverWaffles or whatever Previously known as, I shit you not, "Waffen" Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    I wouldn't be mashing through with two semesters remaining. After this semester I still have at minimum four more semesters not counting summer school (That option is always available).

    Waffles or whatever on
  • taoist drunktaoist drunk Registered User
    edited January 2011
    Waffen wrote: »
    Your goal is still to become a teacher, right?

    Yes.

    Then why not minor in Education? I think I must be missing something. Is the GPA requirement higher there, too? Also, I recommend talking to both your advisor and the head of the History department. There's nothing to lose, and it's possible they'll make an exception for you, especially since you've brought your GPA up so much over the last several semesters and it was just a rocky start.

    taoist drunk on
  • KillgrimageKillgrimage Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    If it's one thing that I learned from college, it's that nothing is set in stone. Talk to the teachers, your advisors, the department heads about your problem, and they will make exceptions for you. I had to take a Japanese History course in my senior year that was only offered to freshmen. So I contacted the teacher and he was more than happy to allow me into the class, especially since it was already clear I was doing my best for my minor, just like it is very obvious you are doing your best for your GPA. Teachers see that and want to foster it, not block you with red tape. You CAN get help.

    Killgrimage on
  • schussschuss Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    If it's one thing that I learned from college, it's that nothing is set in stone. Talk to the teachers, your advisors, the department heads about your problem, and they will make exceptions for you. I had to take a Japanese History course in my senior year that was only offered to freshmen. So I contacted the teacher and he was more than happy to allow me into the class, especially since it was already clear I was doing my best for my minor, just like it is very obvious you are doing your best for your GPA. Teachers see that and want to foster it, not block you with red tape. You CAN get help.

    Yeah, go talk to the department you want to be in. They should let you in, even if they put you on "probation" so you need to get better grades in your major classes. If you're planning on teaching, you'll need a masters anyway, so remember that. Also, you mentioned military service - are you going for free? Don't be afraid of the 5 year plan. Better to spend 1 more year being sure and getting eddicated than to screw yourself out of the opportunity. It's not a race, plus college is rad.

    schuss on
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