How to Handle your Mid-Degree Crisis
Over the course of our degrees, many university students have what I like to call a “mid-degree crisis.” You feel lost, overwhelmed, and left wondering if your major is really the right one for you. I have had more than a few mid-degree crises throughout my five years at UVic, so here are a few of my tips on how to handle them!
Most programs will have a degree planning worksheet available on the UVic website. Print one out and fill it in to see what your next couple years of courses are going to look like. Having a plan makes everything more clear, and with it you’ll feel grounded within your degree. Additionally, looking into your possible future courses can also help you decide whether you want to stick with your major program, if you’re feeling insecure about that.
If you’re having a mid-degree crisis, maybe it’s time for a little break. Whether that be taking some time off school to travel, or only taking three classes for a semester to have time to explore other interests, or running off on a week-long yoga retreat—whatever will help you chill out and ease your stress a little, do it! Don’t feel so pressured to get your degree done in four years—it helps if you can have fun along the way too.
For me, my break was jetting off on an international exchange. I found a balance of still earning course credits while not being so absorbed by stress. I got to travel and learn in a new environment, and had a semester free of mid-degree crises while abroad in the Netherlands.
Find a minor program
If you don’t already, think about choosing a minor to study. It could be “just for fun” or used to supplement your Major. UVic offers so many minor programs: Astronomy, Business, Creative Writing, Film Studies, Gender Studies, Greek and Roman Studies, Indigenous Studies, Music, Social Justice Studies, Visual Arts, and more!
I chose to pursue a Professional Communication minor, and it was one of the best decisions I’ve made for my degree! Not only have I learned fantastic, useful skills in this program, I feel much more well-rounded and confident about my UVic degree.
And finally, if you’re really stuck, make an appointment with your academic advisor! They’re there to help in times of mid-degree crisis. Come in with a question, and they’ll help you through your issue. If your problem isn’t necessarily academic, UVic also has counselling services available for students. Know when to ask for help when you need it; the resources are there!
When you find yourself lost and questioning your university degree, just remember—we all do. You can’t be 100% all the time, and that’s okay. Take it one step at a time, and use your resources. If anything, these mid-degree crises help you really think about what you want out of your UVic degree, and help you really get the most out of your time here.