Preparing for College

Major Options for Future Fashion Magnate

Question: Hi, I'm about to finish 10th grade, and I want to have a double major in college. I know for sure I want to major in biology ,but for my other major I'm thinking of fashion merchandising or business management and administration. I want to one day own a global fashion business, but I'm not sure what to major in to achieve that and give me the best experience?

It's really early for you to be picking a major (or a career) although it makes sense to at least think about what you might want to do down the road ... as long as you keep your mind open to other options. The majority of college students change their major at least once in four years. In fact, I've read statistics that claim this “majority" to be as high as 85%

But here are a couple suggestions for now:

  1. If you get to college and continue to be convinced that you want to own a global fashion business, you might want to focus your major (or double majors) on pertinent areas like business, marketing, accounting, fashion merchandising, etc. If you love biology, you will still have room in your schedule to take bio classes but you don't necessarily have to major in it. As a bio major, you would probably be required to take 10 to 12 bio classes, including some classes that don't especially interest you but that are mandatory for all bio majors. But as a non-major, you can take “electives" in biology and will be able to hone in on only the ones that intrigue you. Admittedly, as a non-major, you wouldn't have the priority that bio majors will have when it comes to getting into courses. But, at most colleges and universities, biology is a very big department with lots of offerings, so I'm sure you would be able to take classes that appeal to you.
  1. Regardless of your major, you should look for internships in the fashion field. Many colleges have business majors. Not as many have specific programs in fashion design, marketing, merchandising, etc. But even if you end up at a college that doesn't offer those majors, you can learn a lot doing internships if you pick the right ones. If you do an internship early on (i.e., the summer after your freshman year ... and maybe even while you're still in high school), it might help you to decide if you're on a career path that feels right to you.

Meanwhile, since you're just a high school sophomore now, you can look into colleges that offer summer programs or online programs in fashion-related fields. For instance, if you Google “Summer fashion programs for high school students," you will come up with options like this one at Kent State University in Ohio: which looks like it might be perfect for you. If a pricey on-campus summer program is beyond your budget, check with local community colleges and even technology high schools to see if there are summer offerings this year or next that can help to jump-start your career and give you a stronger sense of what your future major might be.

Good luck to you as you pursue your goals.