There are many things that young students choose to consider when trying to decide on a field of study prior to enrolling in college. To be sure, this isn’t a small decision. There is a lot of pressure involved as you try to figure out, sometimes even before applying to college, what it is you want to study. 

Among the many things that you might be thinking about are factors like earning and salary potential, job security, and your personal interests and passions. It is also important, however, to take some time to figure out what motivates you to carry on. Completing a degree is no small task, and you will need to make sure that you are motivated throughout the process so that you can give yourself the best chances of finding success.

One thing that might motivate you above all the rest is giving yourself the opportunity to make a truly positive difference in the world around you. Choosing a degree on this basis can give you a real sense of purpose even when things get challenging.

The good news is that there is a variety of degrees for you to consider that can equip you with the skills and knowledge that you need to make a positive difference in the world. With so many options to choose from, you will certainly be able to find a field of study that will be best suited to your personal talents and gifts so that you can use your future career for the common good.

With that in mind, if you are in the process of trying to figure out what you should major in when you go off to college, here are eight options for you to think about that would allow you to make a positive difference in the world.

1. Social Work

In communities all across the country, there are certain professionals who work tirelessly to advocate for vulnerable or at-risk individuals who would not otherwise have the ability to get their own lives back on track. Such people are employed as social workers and play a truly vital role in society.

As a social worker, you would have the chance to pursue a variety of different career paths. Each one would allow you to work directly with those who need your help the most. Whether you find work in a hospital working with patients who might have mental health, behavioral, or other underlying issues in their lives or if you choose to work directly in the community educating and advocating for vulnerable community members, your career as a social worker would be truly rewarding and fulfilling.

2. Biochemistry

If your mind and personal skills are geared more towards a career in the sciences, then perhaps a degree in biochemistry would be right for you. Not only would this be a good choice for anyone considering going to medical school or pursuing a career in medical research, but there are many other ways in which you can use a degree in biochemistry to help others.

For example, with a foundational understanding of human biology and the chemistry associated with human life, you might find yourself working to combat some of the most serious diseases and illnesses that plague people around the world today. This is certainly a worthwhile use of your professional career.

3. Cybersecurity

One job that has a heavy element of working for the common good that is certainly on the rise in this day and age is that of the cybersecurity expert. As more and more businesses, organizations, and private individuals have made the switch to storing their data virtually and conducting work via cyber channels, the need for qualified cybersecurity experts will only continue to increase.

As such an expert, you might wish to work for a private company managing their online security and keeping their data and that of their customers and clients safe from attacks. You might even pursue a career working for the government in order to protect our nation from cyberattacks that could have potentially dangerous results. There are also careers in law enforcement for quality cybersecurity experts. 

Whether you choose to spend your career investigating attacks and security breaches, developing software that can keep digital data safe, or actively seeking out cyber attackers, there is a lot of good to be done in this growing field.

4. Education

There are few jobs that have such heavy social implications as that of an educator. Teachers are responsible for looking after and shaping the lives of their students each and every day. The next generation of this country is currently sitting in the classroom being taught and instructed by dedicated teachers in various subjects.

Unfortunately, far too many teachers are not provided with the support and resources that they need in order to do their jobs to the best of their ability. This can present a challenging scenario in many communities across the country. It is also the reason why there is such a pressing need for quality educators.

With a degree in education, you might even be able to take things a step further in your own career. You could potentially advance to a point where you are able to work as a principal, administrator, or even as someone who has the ability to affect positive change in policy. Such roles are vitally important as many teachers are in need of better leadership in order to get access to the resources they so desperately need to educate the leaders of tomorrow.

5. International Relations

With each passing year, the world seems to get smaller and smaller. The growing use of virtual resources and the fact that travel is becoming more efficient and more affordable than ever before means that countries and nations that were once completely disassociated with one another are now connected in some way or another.

A degree in international relations can help you learn about how the world is becoming more and more connected and what methods can be used to make such connection easier and more beneficial for all parties involved. By serving the global community in this way, you can help pave the way for stronger, more positive relationships between nations as time goes on.

6. Mental Health Studies

There was unfortunately once a time in the not too distant past when people suffering from mental health conditions had little to no way of getting access to the help and assistance that they so desperately needed. This resulted in far too many succumbing to their mental health conditions simply because such conditions were either misunderstood or disregarded altogether.

Thankfully, society at large is finally getting to a place where mental health is taken more seriously. Resources and funding are constantly being poured into research and development in the field of mental health. By earning your degree in mental health studies, you can work to bring about even more positive change to this area of healthcare so that more people can get the help they need to overcome their mental health conditions.

7. Nutrition and Dietary Studies

It is no secret that the scope of healthcare is constantly developing and advancing. One such way in which this has been happening in recent decades pertains to the way in which the health of the body is perceived. While it was once the norm to consider conditions and illnesses in a more compartmentalized manner, doctors and healthcare professionals these days are taking a more comprehensive and holistic approach to health.

It has become increasingly more apparent, in light of such developments, that the importance of a good diet cannot be overstated. Doctors are urging patients to reevaluate the manner in which they eat and the food they choose to consume. A healthy, balanced diet can work wonders for the human body and decrease the chances that a person will contract certain illnesses and even injuries.

Nutritionists and dietitians are in high demand for these reasons. Experts who understand the ways in which food is processed and what the body needs to thrive are employed by healthcare systems and private citizens alike in order to achieve a better overall sense of health and wellness. A degree in nutrition or dietary studies can make it possible for you to work as one of these professionals.

8. Economics

The topic of economics is one that fascinates and, frankly, worries many people in the modern world. The volatility of the nation from an economic level cannot be ignored and is something that can have some serious implications in the near future. 

By pursuing a degree in economics, you can set yourself to become one of the professionals who are working tirelessly to gain a deeper understanding of this ever developing subject and to help get things on the right course. This is the sort of career that is going to become increasingly more important as time goes on and the world continues to progress.

By Manali