The struggle of most History majors or pretty much any humanities student around the world is getting asked “what are you going to do with your degree?”. I can’t begin to count how many time I have been asked that same question from family members to total strangers that you just met. My first experience with the struggles of being a humanities major was in High School when I was asked what I wanted to study by my counselor and I said “something to do with history or anthropology”, and her face could tell you a story. She was already thinking about another unemployed graduate that wad going to go into retail. Well, kind of. I did go into retail after my bachelor’s degree, but thanks to the skills I learned throughout my degree I got several research and writing skills that many might not have. I might not be a doctor or want to be a lawyer, I do have plans and there are options for me besides being a high school teacher. I want to enter Academia, that has been my dream since I was little. I have talked with my mother about being a “Catedratica” or Emeritus Professor since I was six or seven years old. I understand that that might not ever happen as it is hard and almost near impossible to find a position in Academia, but that’s my goal. However, I have a plan B and plan C. I know I will have to do post-graduate research for a while until I get lucky enough to land a lecturer or even teaching fellow position. But at least I will be happy and doing what I love.
So, why am I ranting about getting asked “what are you doing with that major”, well after getting asked the same question you start to think about your future, and start believing that you won’t do any good in life if I study what I love and that I should be more practical. That happened to me several times. Throughout my undergraduate career, I changed my major about 5 times, and being on a limbo is not funny. And after deciding on History, I almost went for a second bachelors to study management, and settle for a manager job. However, that is not what I want. I want to study, I want to travel, I want to see the world and learn about how those places came to be, I want to dive into the past and understand why things went the way they did and how it affected that place or person’s future.
Now that the rant is over, I just want to say, do what makes you happy, study what makes you feel fulfilled, but also have a plan B or maybe even a plan C as the future is unpredictable in many ways. Love what you do, and do not settle because others say you should.