Why a Minor Matters

Picking a minor should be a major decision. More than a series of classes, a minor is an important part of a student's college experience.

A minor is a student's secondary field of study. A student must have a major and a minor or a double major to fulfill graduation requirements. A minor consists of 17 semester credit hours in one department or division other than one's major.

A minor can help complement a major by giving a student additional skills and insights that might not be inherent to his or her major. In addition, it can boost one's career marketability and enhance an application for graduate school. Upon graduation, it can help shape an individual's career path. While some students chose minors that complement their majors, others pick disciplines that reflect interests, aptitudes or career marketability.

Why is a Minor Important?

Potential employers as well as graduate school personnel look at many facets of a candidate to assess suitability.

A well-chosen minor can give a student an edge in the job search process, especially in today's highly competitive marketplace where employers are looking for multi-dimensional candidates with solid skill sets. Competencies, such as writing, foreign language fluency, information technology and management, can make a candidate favorably stand out.

Tips for Picking a Minor

  • Take time to assess the many disciplines available to you by researching them and by talking with your academic advisor as well as with faculty members in each of the disciplines you are considering.

  • If you are interested in a minor that complements your major, pick one that will enhance and broaden your insights and competencies but not be redundant in coursework.

  • If a particular discipline is one you are passionate about but isn't one you want to declare as your major, consider choosing it as a minor.

  • Look ahead to post-graduation plans and minor in a foreign language if there is a likelihood you will be living, working or traveling to an area with a high concentration of individuals who speak a foreign language.

  • If you are interested in starting your own business one day, consider entrepreneurship as your minor so you can better understand and prepare for this future endeavor.

  • Some disciplines are only available as minors at BW, so you may have to minor in a particular area if you have an interest or aptitude for it.