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Choosing a Minor Can Make a Major Difference

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The day that set me on the path to a minor course of study was like any other day in my college career. I was in the middle of class and needed to excuse myself to the ladies room. As I passed by classrooms on the way to the restroom, I saw a man who can only be described as a raving lunatic – half lecturing, half screaming, bounding across the classroom while literally tearing his hair out at the same time. I knew that whatever he was lecturing on, he was very passionate about.

That same week, I witnessed him pick up a desk and throw it across the room. I waited until the students filed out of the classroom and asked one for the name of the class. It turns out that it was a Penology class – the study of the prison system. When the time rolled around for me to choose an elective, I chose a Criminal Justice class. The rest, as they say, is history.

I enjoyed the class – not only for the subject matter, but for the passion and excitement that this particular professor, who happened to be the chairman of the entire department, brought to the subject matter. I took class after class with him, and before I knew it, without intentionally trying, I had completed almost all of the requirements for a minor in Criminal Justice.

Criminal Justice happened to complement my major, which was Political Science. I had planned on going to law school at that time, and both would have served me well if I had ever attended! That is one of the reasons that a student might choose a minor – to complement an existing major. It can show prospective employers or future admissions personnel for graduate school that you “specialized” your education in a particular area. It might be the edge that you need over other candidates in the future.

Another reason to choose a minor would be to “balance” an existing major that is on the other end of the academic spectrum. For instance, if you are studying business but you have a “side” interest in art, minoring in the arts might be a great way to not only balance your resume and show that you are three dimensional, but also to make the college experience more wholesome and enjoyable for you.

I daresay that my minor was one of the factors that helped me to write my book – a book that focused on the actions of the DEA and the government in major drug busts in the United States. I also know that it helped me to obtain and advance in my courtroom jobs that I took on during college. Who knows what it may help me with in the future?


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