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Staff Picks: Minors We Wish We Would’ve Taken

As the end of your undergraduate college career rolls around, it’s a completely natural reaction to start second-guessing literally-every-single-decision you’ve ever made up until now. Ideas about what could’ve been if you’d chosen another path undoubtedly swarm your mind.

It’s a tumultuous time in your life. Just as soon as you start to get the hang of this whole “college thing,” you’re suddenly thrown into a brand new world full of work and insecurity.

Some of our staffers nearing the end of their time here at Dear Old State reflected on minors they wish they had taken. And while minors aren’t as significant as your major, they still play an integral part in forming your collegiate education.

Perhaps hearing about our second-wave of regret will inspire some of you, who are earlier in your careers at Penn State, to take advantage of the many options available. It’s your education and it’s an exciting prospect knowing that you control it. So without further ado, here’s our list of regret:

Emma Dieter: Digital Media Trends and Analytics (DMTA)

All things considered, I really wish I had known more about this minor earlier in my career. As a double major with a minor in business, I was already halfway through my minor coursework when I first heard about it and by then it was “too late” for me to pick up.

The digital media trends and analytics minor provides students with a better understanding of the practices and trends in digital media, advertising, marketing, and public relations. Much of the minor’s required classwork has students take industry certification tests related to analytics, SEM, social media, digital media sales, and marketing.

While I’ve had my share of experience with digital marketing, analytics tracking, and social media use, most of what I’ve learned has been “on-the-job” training. I often feel a lack of expertise in fields most employers are hoping to see recent grads coming out of the gates possessing.

My word of advice? For those of you looking to go into comm, don’t overlook the DMTA minor.

Anthony Colucci: Business

As a psychology and public relations double major, I am interested in how people communicate. One area that this interest has led me to during college is marketing. I’ve learned a bit about it on the fly during a few internships. However, I wish I had thought more about doing a business minor earlier in my career just so I could gain some familiarity with things like basic accounting and finance that would prove useful down the road.

Anthony Fiset: Sport Studies

Sadly it is too late for me now, but if I could add any minor I would do sport studies. According to Penn State’s Undergraduate Bulletin, the minor “stresses the connections between sport and other social institutions and cultural concepts, examines sporting traditions across cultures and time periods, and analyzes sport from multiple methodological perspectives.”

Hopefully, I could learn why I allow sporting events to dictate my mood and physiological well-being. Also, I think that adding it to my resume would really let employers know that I like sports, and I don’t care who knows.

Andy Mollenauer: Anthropology

Having almost completed the three-credit Anthropology of Alcohol course, or, as the professor calls it, Booze and Culture, I’ve really begun to appreciate the larger subject of anthropology and its relation to pretty much every aspect of human life. It really stuck with me when Professor French described anthropology as being present in truly everything. It’s cool to think that one subject encompasses all of life as we know it, and it makes me wish I had taken more classes where I could’ve explored this further.

Matt Ogden: Italian

I took Italian for three years in high school and then took two semesters of intensive Italian, as well as an Italian culture class, during my freshman year. If I continued on with the minor I’d probably be fluent by now.

Plus, I recently watched an episode of “Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown” that was shot in Southern Italy, and the episode made me instantly want to move there. So, if I had that minor, I could’ve had the chance to move to the Boot and eat authentic Italian cuisine after graduation. Sigh.

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