Mass Communication: How to Choose the Right College Major

Mass Communication seems to be a lesser-known and more misunderstood college major.

When I first started college, I had every intention of becoming a nurse. Mostly because I knew I had a heart for people, and since I had worked briefly as a nurse assistant in the past, I planned a college career that would set me on the path to becoming a health care professional.

But things changed when I took my first human anatomy class with cadavers. (Yeah, it was as cringe-worthy as you can imagine.) I immediately started having second thoughts about my major. The more of my major-specific classes I got into, I realized that I was no longer excited about what I was doing.

When my grades started to suffer, I began researching other options, and somehow came across the possibility of majoring in Mass Communication. The more I learned, the more I realized how much this major aligned with all of my interests. And before I knew it, I found my passion.

The biggest lesson I’ve leaned in college:

In order to succeed, you have to be PASSIONATE about what you’re doing!

Could I have become a nurse? I’m sure with lots of hard work I could have been. But I’m lucky that I found something I’m even more passionate about, which is at the heart of Mass Communications: storytelling.

My university offers several types of Mass Comm. degrees, and mine is called Strategic Communications, which is Advertising, Brand Communications, and Public Relations.

HOW I KNEW MASS COMM. WAS FOR ME:

As a communications major, I do a LOT of group projects and public speaking, so if you like collaborating with others and sharing your ideas, this major might be for you, too.

Another thing I knew I loved: the thrill of solving a tough problem. As a Strategic Communications major, I learn a ton of strategy that helps me think of unique solutions to common problems. How valuable is that??

POTENTIAL CAREER PATHS:

The skills you will learn as a communications major can apply to virtually every career imaginable. You will learn how to communicate your message effectively, solve problems with a creative approach, and influence others.

Some potential career paths include: social media, advertising, public relations, journalism, sales, event planning, human resources, media, and even education.

Public relations professionals act as the middle man between the public and their client. They manage the flow of information through interviews, speeches, press releases, etc. to create a good image for the client.

COMMON MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT MASS COMMUNICATION:

Every major has misconceptions, but I think communications seems to have more than others, perhaps because people just don’t understand what it is we do.

I’ve heard that being a communications major is “easy,” or that it’s the major for people who aren’t sure what they want to do. Let me just say that those misconceptions couldn’t be further from the truth.

There’s also a fair share of (uneducated) people who think that public relations majors are all ditzy girls who want to throw parties for a living. Also not true.

And no, communications majors surprisingly aren’t all extroverts. Never underestimate the power of an introvert’s perception and problem solving abilities.

There’s also the people who think that PR goes exactly like this:

ADVICE FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO WANT TO MAJOR IN COMMUNICATIONS:

Staying up to date on the news is VITAL. I can’t tell you how many pop quizzes I’ve had in my major classes that have had some type of news-related question. As a PR pro, you need to know what is happening in the world as it happens.

Keep organized. This is just good college advice in general. There are a lot of resources out there to help keep you organized, including these five apps every college student should have. 

Be active on social media! I got my first Public Relations internship through my social media presence. Communications professionals want to see that you’re posting and having conversations with your followers regularly.

Start a blog. I started Katelyn Blogs after a professor spoke about the benefits of having your own content and personal brand out there, and I’m so glad I did because this blog is my passion project now!

What did you choose as your major? Did you learn anything about communications that you didn’t know?

Be sure to follow me on Facebook here.

Until next time,

9 Comments

  • Taylor says:

    I love this! Applying to colleges this year is already scary… what if I don’t go to the right place, plus the addition of thinking of majors? AHHHH! But you have helped calmed my nerves! I will definitely look at communications as a major!

    • It can definitely be overwhelming! I remember being in your shoes when I was applying to colleges. The best advice I can give you is to trust your gut instinct when you tour potential colleges. I got the right vibe at my college, and that’s how I knew it was the one! And majors can be totally overwhelming! Luckily, you’ll have your basic classes before anything else and that’ll help you learn what might be for you. 🙂 Thanks for reading, Taylor! 🙂

  • Amelie says:

    I’m a communications major too, and I couldn’t agree more with what you are saying! I love this post because I can relate to this a lot. I love how you mention that not all comm. majors are introverts – I am the living proof of that!

  • Just changed my major from Psych to MC and couldn’t be happier! Pinning for further reading.

    Alix | http://www.apintsizedlife.com

  • kathlynkale says:

    Omg, I’m so happy to see you write about this! I’m a senior in high school and have been interested in majoring in communications for a little while now. I don’t know much about the major, but based on the information you provided, it seems like something I’ll be interested in. I just need to do more research on it. Thank you for sharing! 🙂

    Kathlyn | Kathlyn’s Korner

    • You are so welcome, Kathlyn! I’m glad you found it helpful! I wish I had known about this major when I first started college, so I wanted to share some info on it. Thanks for reading! 🙂

  • kathlynkale says:

    OMG, I’m so happy I found this post! I’m a senior in high school, and communications is a major I’m really interested in.This post was very informative and has made me more interested in studying it in college. Thank you so much for sharing! 🙂

    Kathlyn | Kathlyn’s Korner

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