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Competition in STEM vs Humanities major?
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Hi everyone,

I will be a junior in the coming 2020-2021 school year. :)

I've been thinking more about college applications during this summer and something that has been troubling me a lot is what major I should apply under for the schools that ask for it.

I am particularly strong in music performance and composition, and a large amount of my extracurricular time comes from music related activities. However, though I want to keep music as part of my life after high school, it is not something I largely have the urge to major in.

At the same time, I'm also really interested in Bio related subjects, and I've had some opportunities to see what research is like and learn more about biological fields. I really like immunology and microbio.

As I know it, the biology major is much more competitive than fields like music and humanities, and on my chancing profile here on college vine some of my schools go from reaches to targets if I switch to a music major. Of course this is also because I don't have a large amount of experience in biology, given that most opportunities have an age requirement and I just turned 16 a few months ago, and also our current quarantine canceling many opportunities. But in general, in the future when I start applying, would it be more beneficial for me to apply under a STEM major or a music major?

My ethnicity is Hispanic/Latino for context, if it helps.

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answered on[edited]
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Accepted answer

It's more important to apply to programs that you are actually interested in pursuing than programs that you just think are easier to get in to. Applying as a music major to any school will require an audition, which is usually the main factor of whether or not you get in. A lot of music programs look at your gpa and scores to make sure they aren't terrible, but in the end, it's your audition that will make or break your application. I'm not sure how accurate CollegeVine's chancing is for music programs, because it isn't taking into account how you will do on your auditions (other than it knowing you're involved in a lot of music activities). If you don't really have the urge to major in it, then don't. Obviously people change majors and careers while in college, but if you know you don't want to do it, it can save you time and money by not applying to that program.

While it may seem like the STEM major is harder to get into, you know they're basing their decision based off of your gpa, scores, ecs, and essays and not off of one audition. If you like it, you should probably apply for a STEM major. Also, keep in mind, you're just going into junior year. You have plenty of time to finalize what you want to do in college and for your career. If you want to pursue STEM/bio, try to find more activities that you can do to get involved in that. It's always okay to change your mind later about what you want to do

Also, I understand where you're coming from. I'm applying as a mechanical engineering major to my schools this year, while being highly involved in my school's music program. I also am involved in robotics, which pushed my passion for STEM over music.
wow! You make a very good point about the audition process. To be honest, I never really thought about how much a music major really only focuses on one audition. Considering my complete profile so far, and what I expect to add, STEM seems like a much better path for me. Thank you!
You’re welcome! Glad I could help. Don’t forget to click “accept answer” if you’re satisfied with my response :)