If you told 14-year-old me that I would be attending the University of Florida studying public relations, I’d laugh and say, “What even is that?” My major wasn’t always in the cards for me. I had other “rich” dreams I was more interested in achieving, like becoming an orthodontist or a physical therapist with a specialization in sports medicine.
After sitting in my first anatomy lab as an applied physiology and kinesiology major during my sophomore year, I realized I would never be happy playing in kids’ mouths or watching sick dogs walk through the doors of my future vet clinic. I wanted something that wasn’t a typical 9 to 5 office job, something that was challenging and hard work, but worth it. That’s how I found PR. I knew it wasn’t as glamorous as Samantha’s job from Sex and the City, but it would allow me to do what I loved.
I didn’t get there right away. Everyone reassured me that I had time to choose a major from the list of 90 something majors my university offers. But I was running out of time. A spark flew while I was sitting in random lectures from various majors. My undergraduate years were getting shorter and I didn’t want to be in school forever, even though they were shaping up to be the best years of my life so far.
I officially changed my major during the spring semester of my sophomore year. But it hasn’t been perfect. I had some doubts about sticking with the major. My introductory classes didn’t catch my eye like I thought they would. After reaching out to my mentor, who is also a PR major, he told me to wait until I got into more public relations focused classes. He knew that I would find a burning passion for creating work outside the classroom, like pitching creative story ideas and building my portfolio for future employers. I somewhat felt like I was being forced at the time.
Now, 20-year-old me knows that attending the University of Florida and studying PR is the best decision I’ve made thus far. So, what do I plan on doing with this degree? I want to be amongst the many other women who were doubted trying to secure a career in a “man’s game”: football. Learning how to communicate and strategize through various forms of media and with potential clients has prepared me for my future career as a Director of Recruiting Operations. It’s no easy ride, but I’ll be excited to see where this major full of imagination and creativity takes me.