University is all about doing something you love, right? Well, not quite. Choosing to study something you are passionate about might not be as beneficial as you think.
When you study at the university, essentially you are making an investment: one worth up to (and sometimes over) #3,000,000. That’s a lot of money.
You don’t have to know much about investments to know that the purpose of investments is to make a profit. Your degree is a long term investment in which you are rewarded with knowledge. However, investing money that will some day need to be paid back means that your profit needs to be financial, not just academic.
Follow your Instincts
So if you are naturally gifted with numbers but have a real passion for travel, opting to study geography at university might be a mistake. You may find you aren’t quite sure what to do with your degree once you graduate. You suddenly realise that you’re capable of the mathematical jobs you see advertised, but have no qualification to go for them.
There is a difference between your interests and your career strengths. If you think you could really crack the world of modern art, then great! However, if art is just something you enjoy on a weeknight, perhaps reconsider your choice to study fine art.
If you are currently choosing a course at university, or thinking of changing your course, my advice to you is simple: don’t confuse your hobby with your career prospects. Play to your strengths, not your passions. If you are lucky enough to have the two overlap, that’s great. But bear in mind that with the right job, there will always be time for the things you enjoy, regardless of whether you studied them at university or not.