Greatest Missed Opportunity

One of my greatest missed opportunities was not becoming an English major. In the beginning of my writing career, I was trying to prove to myself that I was a good writer (this was coupled with my desire to prove that I was good enough to compete with other students at the University of Michigan). I was hesitant to take writing classes that did not have an argumentative writing component—I knew I was good at that, so why would I stray? Now that I am almost graduated, I realized that I should have explored more and maybe something would have clicked with me the same way that argumentative writing and narrative writing did. I was a political science major because I liked the beginning classes, but I developed passion for most of my English and writing classes. There was missed opportunity in the sense that I could have explored and learned more. The English major would have forced me to do that; meanwhile, the writing minor gives me a lot of flexibility on what classes I was able to take. I never left my comfortable bubble, and I really should have in order to become a better writer and explore other interests.

 

I do not have regrets about my studies—I did like my political science classes and my writing skills, and I learned a good amount. But, I could have pushed myself. I could have learned more. I could have tried to join the Michigan Daily. I could have done more.

 

But, I can’t dwell on the “coulds”. The University of Michigan orientation attempts to advise you on classes to take, but they more-or-less throw you into the deep end. How was I supposed to know that an English major would show me more classes? It’s only in hindsight that I can see the missed opportunity, but missed opportunity does not correlate to regret for me.

One thought to “Greatest Missed Opportunity”

  1. Hey Jenn,

    Maybe it’s just a side effect of a graduation quickly approaching, but I have also been thinking a lot about my time at Michigan, and whether or not my choice of major was the right one for me (spoiler alert, it wasn’t, but nothing I can do about that now). I had thoughts very similar to yours- not only did I not think I was smart enough to be at Michigan in general, I didn’t think I was that great of a writer. I got good grades in high school, but I mostly thought that my English classes were easy, so everyone got good grades and it didn’t really have anything to do with my writing skills.

    I’ve thought a lot about what other course of study I would have chosen, everything from being an English major to being in a different school altogether. Being a comm major still does allow for a lot of writing opportunities but it’s pretty boring research based stuff. I am grateful for whatever struck me to apply for the minor in writing, as it has allowed me much more writing opportunities outside of my major.

    Like you, I am trying to not dwell too much on the “coulds”, and instead focus on what I do still have control over, i.e. grad school. Do you plan on doing more with English/writing after graduation/in grad school?

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