A common misconception is that students need to be upperclassmen before they start thinking about careers related to their major. Macayla Wall is a perfect example of a student who wanted to form a plan early in her undergraduate years and utilized services from the Career Development Center to do so.
Macayla is a sophomore studying Human Biology with an intended minor in Health, Medicine, and Human Values. Like many biology majors, Macayla was unsure how she wanted to use her degree. She considered becoming a doctor, an epidemiologist, or a forensic scientist, but could not decide which career would best fit her skills and interests. Last fall, Macayla made an appointment with Mary Rosage, College of Sciences Career Counselor, to discuss what careers she could pursue with her degree. Mrs. Rosage asked Macayla about her personality, goals in life, professional aspirations, and personal values to compile a list of careers that aligned with her answers. Macayla found that becoming a Physician’s Assistant fit every characteristic she wanted in a career. She knew she wanted to work in the medical field and assist patients, but did not want to go to medical school. She wanted something above nursing, in which she had more authority and responsibilities, but did not want the cost and duration medical school entails. A key part of her potential career is that she wants to specialize- possibly in neonatology, pediatric cardiology, or oncology- and becoming a Physician’s Assistant allows her to do just that.
Macayla has the following advice for other students: “Do not be afraid to ask for help. It probably would have taken me a lot longer to figure out what I wanted to do and get on the right path if I wouldn’t have asked for help. It doesn’t hurt to try! Your mind changes a lot in college but you don’t have anything to lose by reaching out and asking for help and guidance!” Since Macayla now has a plan well before graduation, she can fulfill her prerequisite courses and excel in related extracurricular activities to be sure her application is competitive. The CDC staff wish the best of luck to Macayla in her future endeavors and look forward to aiding other students on their career paths.