When I came to WLC, I knew I would be taking classes to fulfill requirements for the Gen Ed program. Although I was pre-accepted into the nursing program, my decision to pursue a nursing degree was far from firm, and I wanted confirmation of my decision or a new direction. Two of my first semester classes were prerequisite courses for the Nursing Program that also fulfilled Gen Ed requirements-CHE 161 and PSY 101— but the other three of my classes were solely for Gen Ed requirements—THE 110, COL 101, and COM 101.
I got A’s in both Chemistry and Psychology while many of my classmates struggled, but neither class stood out or inspired me. Communications was my favorite class. When the bell rang at the end of class, it felt like I had just sat down, and I was actually sad that class was over.
Second semester I took more nursing prerequisites-BIO 202, BIO 240, and PSY 120— and more Gen Ed classes-PED 152, BUS 150, and ENG 101. Again I got A’s in my nursing classes, but I dreaded going to my nutrition class. And yet again, the fine arts called to me; I loved my English class. My professor told me that I was a gifted writer and encouraged me to look into more writing courses. After two semesters, it was clear that science was not my passion at all. It was equally clear that I was passionate about written and verbal communication, and I am gifted in those areas.
Over the course of the following summer, I dropped the Nursing major I had declared and am currently undecided. All the courses I took counted towards the Gen Ed Program and were vital in my decision to explore majors drastically different from Nursing.
Although I may not need those nursing courses specifically for my career anymore, I can apply principles about nutrition, health, and the life process from Biology and Psychology in my everyday life and in the future, from deciding what to eat based on how many calories I need to understanding how a baby develops if I have a family someday. As I am constantly in contact with people in the world around me, the English and Communication courses that sparked my interest gave me necessary written and verbal communication skills. None of the classes I took were a waste of time.
The reason why I was choosing to learn those things may have changed, but the usefulness of the skills and information I learned in all my classes is not lessened by it. The Gen Ed program exposed me to many areas of discipline, each of which changed the way I think and process information. Ultimately, the program helped me redirect my career path. If I had not taken Gen Eds, I would be a much different person in a much different position today.