Double Majors, Minors, and Interdisciplinary Fields
CollegeAdvisor.com presents its majors series webinars on Double Majors, Minors, and Interdisciplinary Fields in a 60-minute webinar and Q&A with college students and alumni. Our CollegeAdvisor panel will share their insider perspectives on how they chose their majors, how they applied successfully to colleges, and how they pursued their majors in college. Come ready to learn and bring your questions!
2021-02-02 Double Majors, Minors, and Interdisciplinary Fields
Okay. Hi everyone. Welcome to the pod advisor webinar on double majors, minors, and interdisciplinary. Feel to everyone with the webinar tightening, we’ll start off with a presentation, then answer your questions in a live Q and a on the sidebar. And in the public chat, you can download the slides if you want those.
And you can start submitting questions in the Q and a tab so we can start off by needing our panelists. Hi everyone. My name is Pablo hockey. I use he him pronouns. I graduated from Stanford in 2019 with a major interven studies and a minor in history. And I’m now working as a policy analyst for the city of San Jose in California.
Hi everyone. I am Katie. I’m a senior at brown university and my concentration is in science, technology and society. And within that, I have a focus and medical anthro and in mental health.
Okay. Let’s start off. We have a poll for everyone and just to use interest and see what kids.
Okay. It looks like most people are 42%, but they have many interests and want to combine them two majors and minors. But if you book it still decided because I planning on double majoring and a few people have just went to jail, but they know they went to bill. Okay, great. I’m going to close this poll.
And now we can get into the slides.
I can not. Sorry. So it’s great to see that many of you who have joined us today are how many interests and wants you explore for those?
Did he get out for everyone else as well? Is that just me?
Okay. I can start over by saying, we know why pursue a double major or minor or interdisciplinary major. I went into university knowing that I would be interested in a lot of different things. I, myself, in the hand of the humanities and stem kid, a lot of folks have a lot of different interests and those interests are often interdisciplinary, right?
Thinking about the world as one, where everything really is connected. And even within, a field that you think you might want to go into, there are so many different pathways within that field that can be explored that involves, I don’t know, like other fields like ethics or humanities, computer science, whatever it is.
And finding those intersections really has made my experience where my learning experience specifically at university way more fulfilling than if I had gone in with what my intended major was, if I’m being honest. So part of that is I get exposed to different ways of thinking. So getting exposed to different departmental.
Strengths, if you will. So what are, what does the history department particularly strong and explaining versus the anthropology department versus the computer science? So the biology department might coming at it from a lot of different perspectives and really being able to learn about distinct ways of thinking as well as learning as well as just basically, doing your homework and writing essays and doing problem sets.
There’s a lot of flexibility in there. That’s great. Pablo you’re back on so you can continue on. Thanks so much. Yeah. Sorry about that difficulty there. And just wanted to add that along the lines of the first bullet point, the world itself is interdisciplinary. You think about major issues are facing like climate change or institutional racism.
These involve many different disciplines like climate change, biology, economics, public policy architecture. So being able to learn from different fields helps prepare you for a work after college as well. If you want to work on those kinds of things,
Sure what led me to my major. So my major is science technology and society are abbreviated STS it’s one that actually is a growing major. It started off quite small, has its roots in history of science, philosophy of science and has since kind of become a homologous. Concentration, we call it my school major, which basically has all of these different routes and a lot of flexibility.
So the reason why I chose STS and I actually entered into college thinking I was going to be a cognitive science major. I juggled with neuroscience philosophy, history. English I considered for a very long time until my junior year. But I ended up with STS mostly because of the way it’s formatted.
So the way we do it is thinking about, okay, we have one motive theory that we like to think and explore ideas from, for me, that was anthropology. And then a focus, meaning something that I was really passionate about, really wanting to get to know more about, and also wanting to make an impact or change it.
And for me, that was mental health. And so a lot of the classes that I’ve taken have been in various different disciplines STS specifically is also thinking about how can we critique or think about science and the way that science is practice, because everything else science does not exist in a vacuum.
So thinking about, the COVID pandemic and impacting COVID, what are the different ways that we can impact whether it’s politics, whether it’s public health, whether it’s from like the anthropology point of view, my point of view, right? Thinking about all these different things that are impacting people’s healthcare today and hoping that we all get out sooner rather than later, Brown.
I know it brought us a really cool and flexible academic range of possibilities. For me, urban studies was something that I was interested in when I was applying to colleges. And part of the reason why I was really drawn to Stanford because it had a dedicated interdisciplinary program in urban studies.
And the interest really came towards the end of high school when I was involved in organizing a high schoolers to make proposals for how the future of the, of our downtown would look and got really excited about the community development aspects as well as urban design. So I came into Stanford, really interested in that I was still open to a lot of other programs like public policy or international relations, or even earth sciences.
But I. Evolved in my interests around urban design to as I got exposed to a lot of as I learned a lot about power and privilege and different ways in which change happens in cities, I really want it to be in that program. And it was flexible enough to help accommodate my personal growth and academic growth throughout the four years.
Okay. So do you want to start this one public? Go ahead. Sure. Yeah. Why not? In high school I did a lot. I was busy, but I felt lucky that I was able to do a lot of things that I was passionate about and didn’t feel pressure to, do things just to put them on my read on my resume. So few things I was involved in theater since I was little and continued doing shows and being a camp counselor at the local children’s theater.
And see on here sports mock trial, which is basically Pretending to be in court and having legal proceedings as well as doing some advocacy in my hometown.
So for me in high school, some of my major extracurriculars I had worked at a crisis or a suicide hotline locally in Los Angeles. And so I was spending a lot of my time there volunteering, speaking to really like teams around the country and walking him through moments of crisis. And that kind of really is what sparked my interest in mental health and is a large part of what I still do today.
At brown as part of like mental health advocacy and working within that realm. I also was captive with my science Olympiad team, which is, more of a straightforward extracurricular it’s, science Olympiad, you go on, you take some tests about science and you build some cool machines and you fly them around a high school and you compete to do the best you possibly can.
Like I was mentioning before I also was with the humanities and stem kind of person. So I was also the editor in chief of the literary magazine. And I specifically work with poetry and fiction.
Okay. What was your college application and process like? Oh, it looks like, yeah, I heard a lot in my bed. But definitely seconding what Pablo said. It was very stressful. So I’m from California and I came from a competitive public school and I was very stressed out by that and just everybody else’s stress compounded together.
So I completely relate to that. If any of you out there are feeling that same way. I also applied to over 20 schools, which I will say here was, is this might relate back to your point leader as well. I don’t recommend that I applied to too many schools because people were stressing me out about like where I would get in where I, what was my reach school was my target school.
And so I ended up applying to a little bit more schools than I really had to and more schools than I really was actually, even going to go to. And so that’s definitely something I talked to my students a lot about is, how can we winnow down? That was the schools. And. Yeah. So yeah, I wrote a ton of essays and at the very least it got me into this kind of advising business and also taught me a lot about writing and also taught me a lot about myself.
Yeah. So for me, the process was like, can you send stressful? I went to a public high school in island, Midwest, and w we didn’t have a great set of resources around college applications, actually with a few of my friends started like an, a mentoring program for kind of like. College advisor does for my high school.
And I spend a lot of time on the personal or the personal statement, the common FSA which I recommend doing, especially in these times when there are some limitations on standardized testing a lot a focus goes to the essay and recommendation letter. Don’t overemphasize it, but it’s really a big part of the application and tricky tonight are having to help advise folks on different parts of the application.
But I applied to nine schools. I still think it was too many, I think, depends on the person, but I think once you get to seven or eight, like you’re probably have a good range of hopefully include a good range of reach schools, target schools and safety schools and places and programs that, you would enjoy.
It’s hard because you can’t know exactly what it’s going to be like, but talking to students and also having some faith in where your own depth is
Extracurriculars in college. Yeah, I can not start off in this world. I continued some of my activities and interests from high school. I had done salsa dancing starting in high school and was really excited about audition for the team and found a really good community in that group, just like outside of like from many different years outside of my dorm and classes as well as ultimate Frisbee.
And then I mentioned getting really exposed to a lot of new ideas and understandings about the world. So that really brought me into the world activism student demonstrations and organizing, and I’ve loved my tight-knit urban studies community so much that I became a peer advisor and and helps with guiding students through that process.
Yeah, a good plus of the interdisciplinary or double major, or I guess interdisciplinary is that there are a lot of times, a lot smaller. And so you get to know the other folks in your major. Yeah. So the extracurriculars I did so I’m a coordinator at a nonprofit, so I oversee the advocacy and like peer mental health chapter at brown.
I do a lot of research cause my background is in stem. So I do ethnographic meaning like anthropological research which I did at home at UCLA as well as again at UCLA, I was working with media companies like Disney thinking about how can we, play into both child psychology, but also thinking about racism, think about COVID and how can we make sure TV shows are.
Fully representational diversity in a way that’s going to be genuine. And not just, for the metrics, if you will. But yeah, I do a lot of research. I’m involved in psychology, a lot of mental health, medical research. That’s my background. But I also do a lot of activism on campus, both with accessibility to education.
So making sure folks are able to get the education they deserve. And that includes in writing. And that includes in mental health as well as in disability related things. Yeah, and I enjoy storytelling.
Okay. There’s a lot here. Hopefully this will be helpful for people who download the slides. Like I later too. Do you want to start with the double major? Sure. So I’m not a double major, but this was something I, very explicitly felt, spent a lot of time thinking about. So at brown, we actually do not have minors.
So that is not an option. You either opt for the full major or you do not do it at all. And so I spent a lot of time thinking about this. I was specifically thinking about an English double major with, at that point, it was like a biology. Like a biology related and then in English, for example and what ended up and I’ll talk more about this is that double majors mean that they do require more classes.
And so for most schools, especially if you have general requirements you will have a lot of required classes to take, which you might like if you like the structure or you might dislike if you perform a flexibility. So that’s definitely something to be thinking about when it comes to double major.
And I’ll speak later about why I personally decided not to go down that route. Yeah. I’ll just add, I also didn’t do double major. I think part of it was because of Stanford. There aren’t really many opportunities to double count classes and you have to do the whole program. It basically to hold programs, which is really hard to fit in four years.
And you often have to start from the beginning. My girlfriend double majored in biology, in architecture, and she did it two years at a time because she discovered architecture in her love for that in the middle of college. But it is pretty challenging. I would recommend finding, and I’m sure there are a number of advisors with college advisors that have double majored, but really getting advice from folks in the program.
And people who’ve done that before, before doing that. I had a minor in history, which I really loved. It was pretty easy to do because there’s only six classes. And I asked to design my own concentration looking at sort of revolutionary moments in different countries which fit in well with my urban studies concentration in social change.
I think it’s just a nice way to, to take some interesting classes and explore things that aren’t part of your major necessarily.
Yeah. And then for interdisciplinary fields, I know for both Pablo and myself, that’s like the primary major we’re in. So again, with interdisciplinary, I think one of the things that I really enjoyed the most was being able to sample from multiple different methods and multiple different theories in my interest.
So for example, I took a history of psychiatry class. That was one of the most amazing classes I’ve taken, or I took a history of prisons and confinement. Again, I guess I should have majored in history. I dunno, but at brown, that kind of art history professors, when they speak, you listen and you get so much inspiration from them.
And so that’s one of the huge benefits of being able to sample from these disciplines and have them all count towards your concentration because they all contribute to the kind of learning that you were going for. And ultimately like your genuine passion. So mine, again, mental health, I was able to really apply a lot of different things towards that eight minute future that I I saw, I know we’ll just maybe career related questions in the Q and a.
I saw one of those from theory. Advice had gone that kind of relates to major choices in career is it’s good to have both a generalist approach and a specialist approach. So like picking a general area that you are interested in whether that be your engineering or philosophy and then have a really specialist, something that you are good at, or an expert at feel really comfortable explaining to a lot of people.
Hopefully it’s something that you’re passionate about. Cause if you get too, if you focus too much on one thing, or if you spread yourself out too then it can limit some of the opportunities you might have or what you can do with what you learn. But as I was talking about later, there’s also, it’s not like what you major in we’ll assign your whole life trajectory.
All right. I can start. So I put justice and cities as my favorite class, I guess I put an all caps in the downs, really excited at the time about it, but it’s it was cool because it was cross-listed between political science and urban studies, and really had a combination of political philosophy and various theorists along with looking at urban ism, which I think there’s like this impression that political philosophy is very theorial and, it’s very like disconnected from the real world and urban as a, like the, how our cities work.
Maybe I should explain it and say is more informal. Urbanism is really looking at cities, how they develops, what, how they affect our psychology and how we relate to each other within them. So it was very much when you think about it like that, it very much makes sense to look at cities from the perspective of how democratic or how John.
They are how people come together to advocate for solutions or don’t or failed to do so it was just a really good way to combine my passions for that. Spatial element of maps and cities and history, as well as looking at institutions and these higher goals of democracy and justice.
So my favorite class I talked about was essentially a history of psychiatry class. I just mentioned it. So this was particularly, I think, important for me and I’ll speak in the context of a career. Cause I know folks were asking about that. So I’m slated in the combined DSMP program at my school, which means I’m headed to med school next year.
And so for me thinking about psychiatry, thinking about mental health, thinking about health in general from a historical spec perspective is very important to me because I’m thinking about things like racism and colonialism, which currently are impacting the folks that I would potentially be treating.
But also thinking about, some of the hazy spots in terms of medicine, where can I poke holes in it? And more specifically, where can I be more thoughtful about how I can, better be a better practitioner? And how can I make sure that I’m constantly like. Advocating for my patients, if you will.
So that was a really important class for me. Just thinking about, Hey, get out of your current context, but out of your head, get out of like the place that I live in and okay. Historically, what are some things that have changed? What are some like mind-blowing things that I would never have known if I had not taken this class that really will influence the way that I move forward.
And whilst that history shapes the present the future, also, as we understand it, Pros and cons I can start off here. Cause I know I was quickly mentioning this when I was talking about double majors. So again, I don’t know anything about minor, so maybe probably you can come in there cause we don’t have that.
But in terms of double majors, the reason why I decided not to go with the double major was actually because with most ways that it’s set up, right? When you double major, you will always have a couple of classes that you are not too excited about. So maybe an English, for example, it’s like English theory set in like the strategic century or something, or maybe for music, it’s like a music theory, advanced level two where you’re like, I don’t want to go that far. But so the way that my Dean explained to me is with every major you choose, there will typically be at least one to two classes in that variety sometimes more. And so if you think about it, we only take about four classes a semester.
That is a whole semester of classes that you are spending on classes that you’re not super excited about, which. Was the ultimate thing for me because I am someone who gets really excited, but my classes, I love looking at the class catalog every semester and just like getting really excited about the classes.
So for right now, right? Like I’m taking a class in ethnic studies, for example, for the very, very first time. And it’s an amazing class. I regret not taking more classes earlier in that department, but I definitely would not have been able to if I had decided to double major, because I would have to take classes that, again, fit into my department and also fulfill all of those typically anywhere from 10 to 18 requirements that are for each major.
Yeah. Yeah. And just can you just shared, I think one great advantage of doing an interdisciplinary major or any major minor is you never know what you’re going to be exposed to. Like with any senior year of college ethics studies or what skill or kind of project. That, you don’t want to go back and redo your academic approach and do more years of college, but will shape your interests in the work you do after college, or, how you decide what passions you want to follow or what you want to work on.
So that kind of broad exposure is possible in any major, but it’s much more likely in an inter disciplinary major, combining multiple programs. I said earlier how the inner inter interdisciplinary programs Nash more closely with how the world works. I think in terms of many complex systems and ways of thinking.
And I’ll just add another example is in my current work as a policy analyst for the city of San Jose I’ve in the past year alone, have worked on doing resident outreach and communications with the pandemic. Policy research and community engagement around helping young house population, spatial mapping.
It’s just on some of these skills, like GIS that I learned in my major and more recently looking at strategy around how to help folks learn more about the vaccine and get the right folks access to that. So it’s been work that has really run the gamut in terms of skills, necessary, knowledge necessary.
And a lot of it, you learn in the moment, but I am grateful that I did a program that was very broad and you can come see a lot of different kinds of skills and knowledge because it made me feel more comfortable, more for the many exciting different projects. Yeah, I would also say, for grad school or, med school, my case, like it pops off the page in a way where your interviewers are always asking me about what made, what I majored in asking a lot of follow-up questions.
And I know I found a research job this summer that not entirely was based off my concentration, but was a huge talking point because it really influences the way that I go forward in my job, but what I prioritize in a different way from, folks who do not necessarily the major.
And then for cons, I think we’ve mentioned it before, but just when you do a bunch of different things, it’s much easier to spread yourself thin and take away your ability to focus on or absorb what you’re getting from said class or a major activity. So I. I know it was really tempting.
And we’ve been encouraging you guys to pursue multiple interests, but it’s really time for you to want to do a ton of different programs. I’ve heard, you always hear about folks who do four different minors or like three to three majors and that’s maybe it’s a good idea, but it seems like a rare situation in which you really have to focus a ton of your energy on fulfilling a lot of academic requirements.
And maybe you have less time and energy to spend on other parts of your life outside of being in the classroom. So just, keep that in mind that when you’re committing to a program it’s not like that’s your entire life and that’s where you’re going to have to apply to those for the rest of your life.
But it’s also good to be really committed and explore every aspect of that program. And it’s optional.
Okay. Okay, great. That’s the end of the presentation part of the webinar. I hope you found this information helpful and remember that you can download the sides and then there’s done to slash QA and all the way through the question you submitted and the QA tab, I’ll just submit it, the public chat so you can see it and then I’ll leave them outside.
So you can get your question to one journalist or both. Look at the answer. Okay. There are a few questions submitted already while we’re talking. Any questions you might have. So the first one is pictures obviously influence the kind of job you go into later in life to do always know what kind of job you wanted to do after college.
Okay. Sure. That’s a really good question. One study. I remember I okay. My junior year in college at the design school called designing your life, which was a really cool class that kind of made space for students to think about the next, I think it was like three, five and 10 years of your life sort of making plans for those time.
Periods is one of the final projects for the class. And I remember them talking about a study that showed that there is really not as strong of a correlation between majors and careers that as you would think that a lot of people will completely change what they’re doing from their major to their job.
And I think it’s also along a shagger younger generations, much more common for people to do a bunch of different jobs and career paths in the twenties or other young, rather than picking one job or career and sticking with that their whole life. I just the question I do not know what job I wanted to do after college.
Even my senior year, I was pretty open to doing community organizing, to working at a design firm as well as working in policy within local government, as I’m doing or with a social impact consultancy group as well. So I think if I’m reading into the question a bit more it really, it doesn’t matter what major you do cause it, the people you interact with and the kinds of projects and information you get is different.
But I think internships are a good way to try out different career areas and get a sense for it. And it’s not that you need to do one every summer. It’s a lot of pressure on that, but if you are interested in trying out what it’s like to work at a research lab, then doing it for a summer, it gives you a really good idea and you can either continue with it or cross it off the list.
So the future is yours and it’s flexible. It’s obviously not gonna happen unless you try out different things, but I would say it’s pretty flexible. Yeah. I would second that and say, I did not always know what kind of job I don’t think anyone does, or maybe if you are very certain it’s wise to also open up the opportunities.
So for example, going into college, I’ll be honest. I did not know what anthropology was. And now I am majoring in it. And I’m very seriously considering becoming a medical anthropologist. What I did know was more generally. One, what I hated. And then also to what I did enjoy.
So I enjoy teaching. So I, considered becoming a professor right now. I still want to be a professor, but for example, I did a ton of research during college and I found out, Hey, I’m actually not that into research. I’m not that kind of person slash when I was in high school, I was like, I know for a certainty that I really dislike chemistry and I really dislike math.
So I was like, okay I’m not going to open up any paths, like accountancy, where I’m like going to have to do math the rest of my life. So that’s what I went in with. And then really exploring college is always my, I know it sounds very cliche, but I had a lot of fun with that. I really discovered a lot about what I enjoyed and also the way I enjoyed workings.
Also with that line. Like I don’t personally enjoy working in the office. So that was something that eliminated for me. Now I will say, and I sounds hypocritical because clearly I applied to a BSM fee program, which means that I got accepted into medical straight out of high school. I came to brown because we have the flexibility of dropping out of the BSMB program.
If we decide we don’t want to become doctors. So during my undergrad experience, I was still testing myself to see if I wanted to become a doctor, making sure that this was a pathway I wanted to go on. And it wasn’t something that, was just like oh, other people want me to go into this kind of field kind of thing.
So I really explored in that vein again, was like feeling myself out and figuring out if this, something that I wanted to go for. At the end of the day. Yes, I am young. Wouldn’t go to med school next year, but I do some lines for myself, for example. So I really thought about what, the way that I want my work life to be like my day to day life, how I want to be making an impact specifically as a physician in this case.
So yeah, I think that’s definitely something to think about when you think about what kind of job you will have plenty of time to explore. Please do not feel like you have to be pigeonholed, especially as a high schooler. And yeah.
Okay, great. Good question. And seeing in the chat is it hard to double major with biology and having another minor.
Yeah, I can speak to this. So the tendency is that biology has like a very specific set of requirements. And it is definitely completely possible. And I would even encourage if your school has minors, did you a minor or do a double major? Because I think it will still help you open up multiple pathways for yourself.
Not, I wouldn’t say it’s hard. I would say it’s like a matter of what you want to do and what you want to prioritize. If this minor is important to you, when the classes are, sounding good, like you want to spend time on it and take classes out of your schedule for it, then go for it. What I will say though is hard at some schools is probably engineering.
A lot of engineering majors have a ton of requirements. Meaning like for example, you will have 22 requirements, which means you want to start off pretty early freshmen sophomore year, if you want to do engineering. And also that you probably won’t have a lot of extra class space to take like your double major or minor requirements basically.
So not biology, maybe engineering. Okay. Next question. Probably also more for Katie. I want to major in pre-med neuroscience. Do you think it’s a good idea to double major as a pre-bid school? Yeah. So I’m not sure if I understood the question correctly, but pre-med is not technically a major pre-med, it’s just a designation.
That means, Hey, I’m interested in going into med school. So when you are pre-med major sorry, not if when you are interested in pre-med all that means is that medical schools look for certain classes they would like to see. So for example, you might have to take bio 1 0 1, or you might have to take up to a certain level of calculus and a certain number of English classes and psychology classes.
And so that’s all that pre-med means, which means your major can be literally anything. And as long as you are fulfilling what medical schools are looking for, you will be eligible and competitive to apply neuroscience and biology. Have a lot of overlapping classes with what those medical schools are looking for, if that makes sense.
So basically all it means is you have a little bit easy. You have it a little bit easier because you don’t have to take, for example, both my English requirements and my pre-med requirements. Now that’s something I did when, and I really enjoyed it, it’s completely up to you. So yeah, neuroscience is a pretty common, I would say pre-med major and that you will see a lot of students who are interested in going into med medicine, who aren’t majoring in neuroscience.
My roommate for example, is pre-med and neuroscience.
Okay. More general. What’s the advice putting, getting into colleges? Like the ones that you guys attend?
Yeah, I think the first thing I’ll say is that if it’s not clear to you already college admissions is a very complicated Process that I think involves a lot of luck as well as what colleges are looking for in terms of creating their their ideal class with a mix of different interests and backgrounds and identities.
The biggest advice I would offer is consider on the other side of the screen, when you’re submitting your application, what that looks like, and to give you a bit of insight, they have, there are admissions officers in each school read through tons of applications, as you probably know, and then often designated to a certain geographic areas in the country, and then they pick a few which they become champions for.
So your goal is really to be remembered by an admissions. Officer who will then advocate for you to be in the final rounds of consideration and ways in which you can rememorable include having a lot of imagery in your essays and your writing. So illustrating what you want to illustrate, which is about your character and personality.
Because they’re looking for folks who are, who will be kinds curious, engaged members of the community, and be able to demonstrate that your essays using imagery and storytelling rather than being as dryly describing all your accomplishments and why you deserve it to get in. That I think is really important as well as if you’re in high school and you’re still have choosing what activities you do just to really commit and follow what you’re passionate about and find all the ways in which you can have leadership roles or do projects, or connect that to other parts of your life.
As well. So I don’t know. And I’ll just, the last thing I’ll say is that I know places like San Fran and brown have a lot of procedure on them. And certainly the people that places like that are really interesting and come from a lot of different backgrounds. And that’s really the big I think draw us to becoming part of that community to have that network, because in terms of the academics and what you learn it, I don’t think it’s that different from most schools.
I think you can get a really good education that at many levels of colleges. And so I want to dispel a bit of that prestige, but it is true. And there is a, that is it exists because people perceive that as well. Yeah, I’m sure we can go more detail with individual advising. Yeah, I, yeah, something you said, I really just want to emphasize, right?
You have the admissions officers have to want to fight for you, which means that comes out a lot of times in the qualitative sections, essays, extracurriculars. I know my recommendations made a huge difference in getting into a couple of prestigious colleges because the admissions officers were like, Hey, like this thing you did was cool.
And I was like, what do you mean? I didn’t talk about it at all. And then I read my teacher’s recommendation after getting it. And I was like, oh, okay. He really bagged at me. Thank you. Thank you, sir.
Miss extra sentence quick. Just fed on your listed at the weekend and what it says to you guys the 10th. Oh I go to brown and I’m in there. BSMD premium. And I graduated from Stanford in 2019 urban studies, major and history minor. And also I just put in the chat just describing this concept called you guy.
I put the, you can see the household there, which is a Japanese concept. I’m sure it’s become a bit buzzwordy, but there’s some really cool diagrams online that I’m not showing you how to combine what you love, what you’re good at. We can pay for it, what the world needs. If you’re thinking a bit about what you want to do in the future it’s a goal exercise, I think towards that goal.
Okay. This next question was danced to me. Is there a major or program at brown and Stanford that combines psychology and bear? Sure. So I can touch upon this one and I’m sure similar ideas for Stanford. So psychology and neuroscience books study the brain, obviously. What I will say is that brown there’s actually more than psychology neuroscience.
There’s psychology, there’s narrow science, cognitive science, there’s cognitive neuroscience and behavioral decision sciences. And that’s all in the brain department. I think not the question should honestly be like what combines them, but more what makes each of them different if you will. So psychology is like on one end of the spectrum, very squarely in the social science department we’re analyzing, how people interact and then kind of neuroscience is very much based in the molecular if you will. So how are your synopsis interacting for example, and every space in between is a mix of that. So for example, like I was mentioning, I went in as a cognitive science major, particularly with the pathway of linguistics, which at Stanford is equivalent to their symbolic systems major so I was thinking I was more interested in like how the brain works on a more macro level, not quite at the psychology, like human interaction level, but not so much the chemical level. Cause like I said, not a fan of chemistry. And then behavioral decision sciences for example, is completely different because it involves psychology and economics.
So how does psychology influence. Marketing and people buying things. I don’t know, I’m not in that major, but so there’s a huge kind of vast of expanse over here. There’s a lot of money being pumped into it at brown. We got like a couple hundred billion dollars recently for this research.
So I would encourage you to think about what’s maybe different between them, because I think that might be more useful in that particular question, although you can still major in both, it’s just that you might be overlapping in a lot of things that you don’t necessarily need to overlap it. Yeah. Can you mention symbolic systems program at Stanford that is one of the classic interdisciplinary programs like systems and smaller systems in the studies kind of biology and small systems.
It’s a bit broader than psychology neuroscience, which is already quite proud like you were saying, but it brings in linguistics as well as coding. And pretty much as, as well as I can describe it, but you can re consensual it align. And one thing that I wanted to add for you, what you were saying was that it’s good to think about what universities are, research universities, that’s the kind of work you want to do versus liberal arts schools.
Because if they have a lot of programs like Stanford does have a lot of people, economics two research going on in connection with their their graduate school of business. So thinking about a school where you want to just immerse yourself and learn about a lot of a lot about a lot of topics, which is more liberal arts side and versus one as a research university, which often means they have that as well, but that would be more access maybe to research positions or to the kinds of work being done along those lines.
Also, I took psychology one at the classroom right next to the hallway where the Stanford prison experiment was held, which is eerie, but. Cool.
Okay. As a quick break in queue, and I wanted to tell you about what you could do if you wanted to get help on your college apps from Katie or Pablo or any of the other advisors. Pfizer to monthly advising grants to study Penn and the scholar plan. They’re both monthly subscription, where you get matched with an advisor and you get one or two hours of one-on-one each month.
There was a pleasure packages that come with a set number of hours and an extended relationships with your advisor as advisors who will work with you on your cards and say, choosing schools interviews more and sending everyone at this panel, a link to get started. This offer to our page to sign out, we’ll get started.
I didn’t that college Pfizer has had a ton of food. This past mission, Susan, we had cars get into all the IDs and Fe top 25 school in the country, class status as 9.8 out of 10. And that’s because they care. And to working with you, one-on-one every step of the application process. Okay. Now we’ll head back into the queue and I think next question,
how could they distinguish an interest from a possible course of study? Sounds I really like technical theater, but probably well to do it as a career, but to work on shows in college. Yeah.
Okay. Sounds good. So as an interest of study, I think in your essay that somewhere where you can really show it as well as, let’s say your extracurriculars, you already have an interest in theater, but one way I think this would show really amazingly is let’s say you were writing a white school essay, like why brown and talking for example about our theater program here, which we have a very specific set of screenwriters playing writers, people who are directly contributing to the plays that I attend for free during before pandemic times and right.
Maybe saying oh, these are you want to be very specific about the opportunities that you would take advantage of at the school. So for example, if you were coming to brown, you would want to do specific research at brown into our theater work. So that’s one way to distinguish it as an interest.
I don’t think that. Not everything you showed an interest in university has to be a course of study. That’s definitely not the case. Especially for example, if I’m passionate about education inequality, for example, as a high schooler doesn’t mean I’m going to major in education. It just means that something I’m passionate about and want to continue working with in college.
And just being able to show that in a way that seems very genuine and also will, look good to the admissions officers. I guess I’m sure that you’ve done research into this school is a great way to do. I agree. And I think it’s a good way to show that you are a well-rounded person.
If you have interests that are in addition to maybe what you were describing as what you want to do in college, instead of what you want to study when you get to college, I think there are a lot of different ways to engage interests aside from majoring or minoring in something. I also love theater and a lot of acting growing up.
And so I did some shows reproductions at Stanford. And so there, there are extracurriculars in college that you can pursue that maybe you’ll do something with matches your major. Maybe it’s completely different for also internships. Can do, an independent study or like a, like an individual class where you explore a topic, most schools have an option to do that.
And you can also just do something on your own. To explore an interest of yours, I think. Yeah. I think just holding onto things that you’re passionate about even if you don’t major in them as important as well as being open to other interests as well.
Okay. Next question. Are there any minors that you think are important that biology majors should take? I minors that are important I am a huge advocate for like humanities and social sciences in general, as a supplement to a stem education. And I say that as someone who, had obviously tied to take the pre-med course of studies, where I really am using.
Not amount of literally, but using literally like a different part of my brain and really thinking about things in a completely different perspective from when I am taking the biochemistry class that I’m taking now and having to go through amino acids, it really is a completely different way of thinking.
And I think it, it does open your perspective and more, if you want, think about it, like literally it will make you a better interviewer speaker, all of these different things when you’re talking about biology or whether it’s, you’re talking about what impact you want to make. So yeah, that’s my personal encouragement is to expand upon other disciplines.
So not just like biology and neuroscience or biology and physics, but biology and history or biology and economics.
Yeah, second year,
next up. How can you combat the need? It’s just wanting to learn as much as you can.
I like that. I don’t know if you have to combat and combat that feeling. Maybe I’m misunderstanding the question, but I’ll interpret it as like you have a lot that you want to learn. How do you handle all of that desire and pressure? I think if you can balance like your long-term goals of what you want to accomplish with, what really excites you in a moment is a good way to do so if you look at the course list and there’s something that you really want to learn about but you’re like, oh, this is not going to fit into my brain. Like why? Like just go for it and maybe it will. Maybe it will, but that’s okay. I think let yourself be drawn to things that you’re passionate about or excited about.
But as we were saying before, you don’t want to overwhelm yourself or over commit, so you do have to send some point. Like I remember I have, I’m trying to find them somewhere, like spreadsheets full of all the classes I wanted to take. And there’s so many on there that I can only take 10% of them.
But it’s also okay, because it doesn’t learn doesn’t end when you graduate from college. And you can realize how of books go to grad school and you can take other kinds of classes or find other ways to learn about it. Yeah, I dunno. Do you have a different take on that question? I was going to say, I feel that really hard.
I always a brand Mueller shopping period, but I, but what I’m trying to say is I always want to take 10 classes in a semester and have so much trouble whittling it down. So I definitely hear that. Like Pablo says I think colleges love to see intellectual curiosity, but more than that, like as an intellectually curious person, you will continue that in your life.
I don’t think it ends in college and what the traditional educational structure. So at some point as you move on beyond college, whether it’s graduate school or with other kinds of modes of learning, you’re going to have different people to learn from. And you’re also, it might be nice also to, Not necessarily have the teacher, student structure as well, hopefully in the future.
But yeah I have a whole list, for example, in my notes of just like books and things I want to read to expand on in my learning. Have I got into it? Not yet, but I am going there and it’s something that I’m, keep there and very excited to get into at some point that is okay, this is how I’m gonna extend my learning.
These are all different, like little things that different students and teachers have dropped. And just like in my day-to-day life have dropped where I’m like, okay, that sounds interesting. Let me explore that some time. But yeah. Yeah. I, I hear that question a lot. Yeah. That’s the thing about knowledge.
I think it was a quote it’s like the more, the more you realize you go. No. So that meter, like that question learn more, will never go away. I hope. And I also agree with looking at, you said when you get out of college, Pressure or motivation maybe to learn a bunch of things, but you also have a lot more flexibility.
You it’s really nice to be able to just read and talk to your friends about something you can just read. You don’t have to do a test.
Okay, the next question is probably also white what is anthropology and what can you do with it? Yeah, so I have a really hard time explaining this to people. My mom asks me all the time. Anthropology is technically the study of humans, which everybody, you can Google that and find that out.
What I think of it as is making sure that you send to people’s stories and what we call lived experiences at the center of your work. So at the heart of anthropology, is this particular. Type of learning, which is interviewing people and really getting to know their context, really understanding them.
It’s partially a study of cultures as well, and that’s not necessarily cultures meaning like going to another country, but that can be cultures within America. So for example an anthropologist might be studying the different cultures involved in the pandemic right now. So how is the tick-tock culture getting there or the anti masking culture, or, the different kind of different like sub populations and going there talking to people, inserting yourself as little as possible into that conversation.
You getting to know the full picture there and then bringing that back and understand. Now, what can you do with it is a great question. I’m going to med school obviously, so that’s one way you can go. Lots of folks become professors that’s I think it’s kinda similar to like history or other academia where you can become a researcher, you can become a professor.
I met a medical or I met an anthropologist who has served non-profit for example, and was actually currently being funded by like the county of Los Angeles and had a lot of money cause they hired me. So it, I think it’s, there’s a lot of different ways that you can go with it. My personal was like, I really like teaching, so I wanted to go down the professor path personally.
I was just playing and look, I just read that said your policy related. Yeah. I should also add it sounds like you have more like a, you have more of a focus on like early civilization, which I don’t know as much about. But that’s also part of anthropology cultures. Yeah. I feel like I was learning a lot about I was most focus on recent history and sort of social change and in cities and societies, but I always had a soft spot for like back when most folks were hunter gatherers and how that affect us.
But yeah I literally, I wanted to add, cause I’m up in the political ecology major is that I think there’s the question is like, what can you do with it? There’s often an an association with like majors to being directly to the jobs. And I think there are a lot of majors that don’t necessarily not haunted.
Most jobs are many jobs and that’s okay. And I think. Even jobs that don’t relate are excited to see or interested to see people who have different skills or different interests. And maybe it’s refreshing to see someone who’s not like a econ major. I don’t where she has major. Yeah. Yeah. I hadn’t met an anthropology major whose their job was to like write marketing descriptions for items and tell a story about the items that people would buy it, or I, I, like I was mentioning, I was entering at a media company. That’s like a big place for anthropology where you could, again, bringing that storytelling and learning about different people into the media. Next question, follow up line. Does brown author surface topology matrix that’s less science. Yeah. So anthropology is not science-based at all. So there is 0% science in it. It is just, I, like I said, I do medical anthropology, but even then what we study is like the practice of medicine. There’s zero science.
I’m not learning biology in my major. It’s just your reading, a lot of books. So it is cultural based in America. Cultural anthropology is very popular.
Okay. So next question is while minoring in history, are there certain topics that are more focused that are focused on more than others?
Yeah. So there’s a ton of history classes that can be as broad as, looking at the history of the entire country or maybe even a very particular social movement. Yeah. So in terms of, yeah, there definitely is a huge variety in terms of what focuses are. I’ll put my email in the chat for saw some questions about classes.
If anyone wants to ask me more about crosses and areas that they’re interested in. Cause yeah, I don’t want I to save more time for other questions. Oh yeah. That’s what I was going to ask. Any classes relating to politics and urban studies paychecks? Yeah. And at the time, yeah, most of my classes really default policy.
Cause there was like one that was called political power in American cities. And we thought, we talked about like why like in the bay area where most people. Consider themselves Democrats and support in theory government investing in providing resources that people were less fortunate, why they oppose housing for low income people in most of the bay area.
I know like these kinds of accuracies or consistencies are really interesting to look at in urban spaces, talked a lot about gentrification, about housing history of redlining. Yeah and you look at politics nowadays there’s a huge urban, rural divide as well. So definitely here’s my email in case people want ask.
I think the bay area is a really interesting place to be studying European studies, especially. Yeah, definitely. Yeah. It’s you can learn it right in your backyard here.
Okay. I’m not seeing any more questions in the, I bought.
Hear about it, handle the gun. If anyone missed in the beginning, I think you all said the great questions. Oh, this is the end of the lab. And I, we have a great time telling you about double majors, minors, interdisciplinary fields. They, more than I was helpful for you and that you feel prepared for your college applications and goals.
We have a brand new will, the next period, this February for specific majors that you can see here. Thank you all for coming. We have two minutes left so we can hang out. If anyone has more questions. I see one. How do you help? Good at time. That’s a good question. Yeah. Yeah. I’m the kind of person who will think of a task and then forget it in the next five seconds.
So I always make sure I have a, to do list and can jot things down. And yeah, I think the other thing is just, I have a habit of doing this, like saying yes to more than I can accomplish. Really getting to know what you can do for yourself. And I always block out evening time to spend with my roommates and just watch TV, for example.
But other than that, yeah, it’s, I guess part of it is just making sure what tasks are ahead of you and planning them out. That’s something that I personally really stress. Yeah. I think finding an organization method for yourself is really good. So I’ve tried a bunch of different ones right now.
I’m doing this thing called bullet journal, which I like combination of like planner plus journal type thing. I really struggled at the beginning of college with sleeping enough. I always stay up late working on Snyder, talking to people that’s really important. Like just to stay healthy as I really encourage you to make sure to have a good sleep schedule.
And like he was saying block off time for yourself and to have a separation between work and not work because when, especially when we’re remote, mine gets blurred and it’s really hard to have that time. So just remember that you’re more than just a student or like someone working in your whole life.
Okay, great. I think that’s the end of the questions. So I’ll go ahead and end the webinar. Have a good one.