• Explore Their Path

    Use this blog to learn about students, faculty, staff, and alumni in your majors of interest. Find Your Major Tribe!

  • Explore Stories By Majors and Minors

Jazmine Kelleher, Identifying Her True Passions at USF

Jazmine Profile PhotoJazmine Kelleher

Major: Entrepreneurship & Innovation

Minors: Neuroscience and Architecture & Community Design

There is an undeniably increasing amount of pressure placed upon students to know what they want to do with their lives at the transition from high school to college. When college majors used to be a concern for actual college students, such decisions now amass the minds of younger and younger students. In my experience it is not uncommon to hear middle school aged children discussing application strategies for Stanford’s bio program or MIT’s computer science major. I was too one of this believers. A believer that I had to know what I wanted to not only study but do with the rest of my life. The problem was that from a young age I was enchanted with everything and learning was simply fun. So how could I choose one area of study to keep me satiated? Well the answer to that is that I couldn’t. About mid-year through high school I decided that I was going to be engineer. It was a goal I choose, became passionate about and then deeply entrenched it. Once I reached college applications senior year my passion had changed, and I decided it was right to put my love for science to the test and pursue biology— I was going to be a neurosurgeon. I once again became enthralled in the idea, I read books talked to my family members who were physicians and declared a path of a major in biology with a focus in molecular biology and a minor in neuroscience at USF. I was SET.

The fall of my freshman year of college rolled around and I began my heavily science based curriculum, but something wasn’t clicking… I enjoyed what I was studying, but frankly I was bored. I was reading biology textbooks, attending chemistry lectures, taking part in group study sessions, but the fire was weak, the flame of biological passion had died. So I researched what I could do with it, maybe the idea of being a neurosurgeon was getting stale…. So, game change I was going to be a patent lawyer. I had some science, I had some law, this would keep me going, I convinced myself.

However, as first semester came to a close, my interest for biology wasn’t there, my mind wondered from my lectures, I couldn’t focus on school like I always had before, and that’s when I realized maybe it wasn’t a prospective career goal that needed to be altered but my major. But no! I had committed to biology, I told myself. I can’t quit. That winter break I did some deep soul searching and began talking to all the people in my life who knew me the best and instead of piecing together a career from the top-down, it was time I focused on what would keep me satiated in the classroom, and the answer to that was a lot. So, the answer was then to study many different academic realms.

I began with identifying the “bones” of my ambition and fire, and it always came back to fact that I have a go-getter, entrepreneurial spirit. So the base to my educational smorgasbord became my current major, Entrepreneurship & Innovation. Then I had to choose what else would maintain my interest. A big piece in that puzzle was science, so I kept my neuroscience minor. But there was a lingering piece, my level of visual creativity, and that came in with my love of architecture. Thus, today I am an Entrepreneurship & Innovation major with a double minor in Architectural and Community Design and Neuroscience… itself a mouthful to tell people, and it’s exactly what I need.

So, my advice to any incoming student is pluralistic: trust who you are, believe in anything, and don’t be afraid to change your mind. In trusting who you are it’s so critical to not abolish any self-integrity, especially when dealing with something as critical as education; don’t settle for what you think others will be proud of you for studying or for what you think is the right way to go. I always knew I needed a lot to keep me going, I was disinterested on a singular circuit, so I needed to employ many different outlets for my brain to explore. Second, believe in anything. My projected course of study sounds convoluted and busy; it is and it keeps me on my toes, but it’s nothing I cannot accomplish. And third, with the increasing amount of pressure that surrounds our current society, don’t ever feel like you have to stick to something you aren’t passionate about because of what others will think of you. Don’t work from the top-down approach if you can’t maintain passion in the end goal, you’ll just hurt yourself more in the long run.

So, I thought I was going to be an engineer, a neurosurgeon and then a patent lawyer? Well now I know that I like real estate and properties, I am interested in the brain, and I want to work for myself. It’s time to stop chasing a singular goal and see where the avenues of ambition take you when you are tunnel visioned about something so isolating. Thanks to USF’s small, inclusive community I was provided the opportunity to explore what worked for me and what didn’t. My classes are interactive, my advisors are personable and the opportunities are endless. Suddenly changing the world from here doesn’t seem to improbable, but instead quite feasible.

Therese Agnew and Jake Chevedden Went From Fine Arts & Politics to Whiskey

Therese and Jake Profile PhotoRead how wife and husband team Therese Agnew ’09 and Jake Chevedden ’05 met at an alum’s birthday party and went from USF Fine Arts and Politics majors to award winning whiskey makers.  A true testament to the fact that choosing your major doesn’t have to determine your whole life!

USF News Article from USF Magazine about Therese and Jake


Jovi Lin, Entrepreneurship & Innovation Major from China

Jovi Profile PhotoName: Jovi Lin

Major(s), Minor(s), Program(s): Entrepreneurship & Innovation

Previous Major (s), Minor(s), Program(s): none

What attracted you to your initial major(s) and minor(s)?:

When I was a freshman, I spent a lot of energy and time to establish a program called “Chinese international students from North America returning to China to teach in mountainous areas during the summer vacation”. This program made me understand that I want to be a social entrepreneur.

What inspired you to change programs?:

I always insisted on this major and never gave up.

What do you like best about your current major(s) and minor(s)?:

It taught me how to think and solve problems from multiple dimensions, and taught me a lot about business.

What is most challenging about your current major(s) and minor(s)?:

This major does not give you a very specific direction of study. It just teaches you how to think. Therefore, if you don’t have a clear goal to pursue, this major will make you confused.

What sort of internship and career opportunities have you explored?:

I had interned in an education-related start-up company during last summer. During school time, I also interned in China Telecom Americas and Student Medicoved as a business administrator.

What sort of extracurricular activities have your participated in?:

I have been a volunteer teacher to teach children in China’s underprivileged areas during 2016 summer.

What resources helped you with your exploration journey?:

I would say the school club gave me a lot of help. In here, I met a lot of friends and opportunities here. Thank you, USF CSSA (Chinese Student & Scholar Association)!

What advice do you have for students exploring majors?