You’ve probably guessed what I’m going to write about from the title of this article. I know its a very Tufts thing to say, but I do mean it when I say “do something you care about”, and here’s why:
If you do something you care about, not only will you enjoy yourself while you’re studying or practicing, but in the long run, you’ll also be better at what you do. When you talk about it, people should be inspired by how passionate you are about your field of study or work.
This article is as much for people who haven’t declared their major (i.e. freshmen) as it is for prospective students. Think about it like this: you could spend four years of your life studying something that society deems valuable, something you don’t quite enjoy, and get a “good job” at the end of it. You may hate the job and what you studied, but it’s all worth the prestige, right? Wrong. Imagine this situation: you study something you love which has less of a real world application, but because you enjoy it, and you excel in it, your GPA is higher, and therefore you have better job prospects.
I feel there is a large disconnect between what people want to do and what they actually end up doing. I recently met someone who is really interested in starting his own company which develops software, but he’s studying economics and international relations and is trying to get an internship in finance. Do you see what I mean?
Align your interests. I’m not saying that if you’re interested in finance, don’t do it. What I am saying is that if you’re interested in something, but you think finance gives you better job prospects, don’t do finance. Concentrate all your efforts on one task you love. I know people say “don’t keep all your eggs in one basket,” but in this situation, it might be applicable to say “keep all your eggs in one basket, but watch the basket!” If you spend enough time developing something you care about and doing something you love, you’ll be exponentially more successful. Best of all is, you’ll enjoy it along the way.
So what does this mean for prospective students? Think about what Tufts offers you. Think about what you care about. Think about how you can develop that and make a difference. Think about what drives you, what motivates you, and think about how, at Tufts, you can pursue that passion in an incredibly collaborative environment.
What does this mean for people who haven’t declared their major(s)? Take your time. Think about it. Do you really want to spend upwards of 12 hours a week crunching numbers in quantitative economics, or do you want to do something else you love? I urge you to take this into serious consideration, simply because I want people to do what they love and succeed in that field. If you can add value to even one person’s life by doing what you care about, I honestly feel it’s worthwhile, even if – and especially if – that person is yourself.