T Nation

Thinking about changing my major

I am now a computer science major about to get into my 2nd year of college. I have always been good at using computers to design web sites/forums, but that road seems very boring and dull. I am also now seeing the fading need for web designers, which has discouraged me. However, I had been training for a few months and really got into it during this year. I am thinking about changing my major to some sort of training/nutrition major, but I know nothing about it. I dont even know where to start, or the names of the majors. I am not very sure what job I would like to have, but I know I want to help people change their lives for the better.

I would like to know where I should start, and also what lies ahead.

Trust me, it’s very easy to make it as a trainer without any formal education in the area. It’s much harder to make it in the nutrition world.

If you’re thinking of going that route get yourself a nutrition degree and become an RD. Then get some training certs (CSCS is available if you have any sort of degree) and you’re laughing.

STU

Go talk to the department head in the kinesiology department at your school.

Then go talk to the strength coach and volunteer. You will be cleaning and doing other lower tier duties at first.

I would like to be a trainer rather than an RD

A couple thoughts:

Computer science really has nothing to do with designing webpages. It’s a little bit difficult to describe, but it’s really just a whole lot of math with some other stuff thrown in. I don’t mean to scare you away, but if that doesn’t appeal to you, you might want to go a different route.

That said, if you can swing the CS major, it can open up some very lucrative doors for you.

Sometimes it tires me when I hear people saying that certain degrees lead to more lucrative careers than others. Ultimately, if you’re financially intelligent and creative you can make money no matter what you’ve studied. Dude, do what you love and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

That said, if you’re feeling as though you’d like to get involved in the exercise/nutrition area I’d suggest that you look into a GOOD kinesiology program. I emphasize the word “good” as not all programs are created equal.

While you could easily become a trainer with little or no formal schooling it’s always refreshing to talk to someone who hasn’t learned everything they know from the media. Take what you can from your classes and become a knowledgable trainer. Perhaps then you won’t be sold on the silly amounts of protein people recommend.

Bigwall I went through the same thing. Over here the Computer Science classes are on average 3-5 hours (including the lab). I found myself counting how many times I yawned during lecture and compared that with last weeks score as a way of killing boredom.

I changed my majors to Computer Network Engineering and Sports physiology major in what you love doing.

computer science major year. I went through the same kinda thing earlier this year, I really enjoy programming but a lot of the theoretical stuff behind cs bores the hell outta me. I got over that though once I took a high level cs course that challenged me and made me realize why i liked cs in the first place. Web design is far from what cs majors really do, there are so many fields in computer science that you need to look and see what you want to specialize in. Right now I am dying to take a course in artificial intelligence, mostly b/c I am contemplating pursuing a masters in that field. :slight_smile:

BigWall,

If I were you I would do whatever it is that truly excites you! Don’t get into any career simply because you think you can make money at it. That may sound odd, but I have found that people who follow something that they really love always end up making more money, and also enjoying themselves more while doing it!

funny this thread comes up, i too am going for a major in c.s… i was always fascinated with programming (genetic programming/operating systems internals)… but i’m at a point where i am questioning weather or not i really want to have a job like this. i always did it for fun and never really planned on working for somebody doing it.

so i am also very f’n confused… i have basically a couple of weeks to make my decision on weather i go the c.s route or go a sports/strength field route…

too stressful

I have looked at the routes CS can take me, and its not for me. I only mentioned web design because that was the only thing i had some desire to pursue. Sitting down and programming on a computer all day is not at all a job I want. I like working outside, and with people. I also am going to join the Navy ROTC program in hopes of becoming a navy officer, and then a pilot.(The Ultimate Goal is to join the blue angels) But none of that is possible without a degree.

Also What are all the majors in the field? and thank you for your comments so far. I didnt realize we had so many CS majors at T-mag :slight_smile:

"I dont even know where to start, or the names of the majors. "

I admire your admitting to yourself that you don’t want to do CS and feel the instinct to do something else. I did not learn my lesson until after I graduated.

However, I am not going to sugarcoat my advice: it sounds like you are daydreaming and fantasizing instead of working towards your goal of finding out what you want to do.

You are ignorant and need to educate yourself on what fields are available.
You do this by visiting the departments you may be interested in first hand, picking the brains of the students and professors there, and READING about the major. You also want to talk to people in each field, those who are DOING and MAKING THEIR LIVING at what you think you might want to do.

You have to be proactive and go out and GRAB what information you may need.

“I am not very sure what job I would like to have, but I know I want to help people change their lives for the better.”

Admirable sentiments but if you have no idea what you want to do, that’s a huge problem.
If you don’t know what you want, then how can you get anywhere? You need a goal.

You have some serious work ahead of you.
But in the long run, Better you make this change NOW rather than later.
Good luck and don’t let anyone tell you what to do w/ your life.

Well first off, I agree with others here that you need to do what you enjoy. That said, in my experience, 2nd year CS can be very difficult and very boring (I minored in it, vitually all my good friends are CS guys). If you truly are interested in computers you need to evaluate yourself to make sure you dont want to stay in the field.

I also get the feeling that people on this site (And others like it) often decide they want to become trainers. I don’t know that thats necessarily a good thing - I think a lot of people say “I love lifting, so I’d love to be a trainer.” But the fact you love lifting says nothing about how much you’ll enjoy training. I used to think I’d like to be a trainer - what guy who hits it hard in the gym hasn’t? But after looking at myself, I realized I love helping out buddies in the gym as much as the next guy, but training the public at large is of no interest to me (old men, soccer moms, etc) - you need to make sure you don’t feel the same way.

Next, regarding CS, you cite one job - “grunt programmer” - as something you are not interested in. There are TONS of jobs you can get with a CS degree - it is a good jump for virtually anything technology related. I know of people who have CS degrees and interact with people plenty (for example, I worked for a school district, and the network engineers there who were CS majors would travel to different schools to fix network problems, work closely with school admins, network admins, techs, etc, to get the problems fixed). Another thing you may consider doing, if you still like CS at all, is supplementing it with a minor in something like business or economics, which will impress employers and give you a jump on more management oriented jobs. Finally if you are interested in the NAVY I can tell you right now that they recruit partially on need, and something they really NEED right now is CS guys. I would venture a guess that if your CS you’ll slide in no problem, but a degree in kinesiology won’t give you quite that boost. Plus, working on technological war systems sounds pretty interesting to me.

My point is not to “get you to stay in CS.” My point is that you seem to have decided “I don’t like CS, but I like lifting, so I’ll be a trainer.” You need to examine things on a far deeper level than that before making a final decision on this.

BigWall,

Doing websites IS NOT Computer Science. That’s like saying that repairing cars is Mechanical Engineering.

Programming IS NOT Computer Science. That would be like saying that using knives makes you a surgeon.

Talk to a professor and a graduate student. Ask them what CS really is, and what it isn’t.

Be carefull, don’t take a decision based on your flawed knowledge of what CS is.

If you really want to work outside, you should study BioChemistry and get a PhD in Marine Biology :slight_smile:

sometimes a company goes for a certain degree not because of the specific skillset involved, but because of the problem solving learned from it. at my work many of us are EE, SE, CS, math, physics… and i bet you none of us are doing what we thought we’d be doing…

cs degree does not necessarily lead to sitting on your ass all day…