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Crisis talks

April 28, 2022 by Kelly Kendall-Jones

Crisis talks

So, you’re about half-way through your current course of study, and you’ve got some niggling doubts about why you’re studying your chosen degree, where it’s going to lead you and if you’re really interested in that career pathway… If you can relate, you may be having a mid-degree crisis.

Yes, it’s a thing. Whether I’m seeing students one-to-one or in workshops, existential angst and uncertainty over degree choice is incredibly common and comes up frequently in conversation. Take heart in the fact you’re not alone and read on as we break down what this means moving forward.

Firstly, rest assured that a singular pathway from an undergrad degree to a career is not realistic for everyone. It’s a big ask to expect you to know straight out of high school what you want to dedicate your professional life to – the who you are in second year uni is not the same you who graduated from year twelve.

Self-discovery is an incremental process that doesn’t happen overnight. It’s the accumulation of experiences that help shape your way forward, one step at a time. Take some of the pressure off by thinking of your undergrad as a starting point, not simply an end point.

Should I stay in my course even though I’m having doubts?
There is no easy answer, nor is there a right or wrong decision. That said, it’s important to weigh up the pros and cons. You might feel you have invested too much time and money to change now. Or you might feel like you need to finish what you’ve started. If that’s you, and you want to see your course through to the end, go for it. Degrees open doors, even if it’s not in the immediate area of your studies.

If you do choose to stay, consider the transferable skills you’ll take from your degree. Would they align with a graduate program? Remember, many graduate programs are seeking a range of talent and invite applications from all discipline areas. UniHub, GradConnection and GradAustralia are great places to begin exploring the opportunities available.

An undergrad degree also opens the door to postgrad study. You might choose to complete your current degree and then undertake a graduate certificate or diploma in an area of interest that you discover along the way. Check out Curtin’s post-grad courses for inspiration.

Should I switch to a different course?
If you’re thinking of calling it a day on your current degree, you’ll want to make an informed choice. This means not rushing your decision but gathering information, taking time for self-reflection and reaching out to others if need be. Know your options, understand the implications, and assess the pros and cons.

This can mean having a chat with your course coordinator, consulting with Curtin Connect, searching for relevant Career Guides in UniHub, completing the Explore Your Options modules in Curtin Challenge, or booking a conversation with the Curtin Careers Team.

And remember – everything you’ve done up to this point has been necessary to bring you to where you are now.

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