So I interned at a technology-focused boutique investment this past summer (my sophomore summer) and am in my first semester of business Haas courses.
I now realize that business, finance, banking, & venture capital are not interesting enough for me to forego my older passion of technology and computer science. So I want to switch to L&S and major in Math, with the intention of doing a masters in CS. I would still enjoy business but not as an academic pursuit during my undergraduate years.
I have gone through all the possibilities regarding course units and prerequisites, and could either focus on business (along with some humanities classes I want to take) or focus on Math, with those same couple of humanities classes and some CS ones too. I couldn't do both Haas and Math and/or CS.
If I choose to switch major then I'll take a fifth year, but I even prefer that and my financial aid package covers me entirely.
I am just so bored with my business courses and am somewhat willingly failing them as a result (I had little problem maintaining a 3.8 until now). Does anyone think I'm going insane?
better to do what you actually enjoy. if you switch too far down the line (after undergrad) it will be degrees harder. sometimes you need to bite the bullet and make the decision that is right for you, and commit. it sounds like your mind is already made up
One confusion is if I should just major in Computer Science right now. I would prefer having the Math foundation first, but chances are (for anyone) that I won't have the opportunity to study my "passion subject", Computer Science, at UC Berkeley for Masters/PhD.
ucbalumnus - I've enjoyed anything through my experience learning through online full-course lectures over the last couple summers (not 2012 though), covering anything from Real Analysis at Mudd or Algorithms at MIT, and for years before that (middle school) I've been involved with open source software, programming and such.
f I should just major in Computer Science right now. I would prefer having the Math foundation first
this is how many people think, and that is how many people end up in a career in mathematics.
yes it is true it's nice to have a math background for the field. But if you can't differentiate needing to be "good enough" from needing to be "perfect", then you will end up down the slippery slope of not knowing when to stop studying math and you will end up being an academic. And you will look back and say "gee, i never really got to CS... oh well"
If you think you'd prefer to have the math background, you will see that there is a lot more going on behind the curtains than what undergrad math can get you near. You'll be stuck back there in theory for a very long time...
I stick to my guns about what I said earlier
better to do what you actually enjoy.
don't sell yourself short, I'm sure you have the mental flexibility to roll with the punches in CS and become very adept in your passion. That'll pay dividends later. You're at Berkeley, take advantage.
Thanks crowslayer91, I understand the value of "taking advantage of the moment" with regards to CS right away, but I have no fear in "getting caught up in math". My plan is to get the MS Computer Science after graduation, and if at that point I'd rather do math, so much the better!
So at the moment, my situation is that the value for me of a math foundation (versus none), beats the value of guaranteeing Berkeley undergrad CS (versus the risk of having no prestigious CS opportunities). Is Cal CS worth that?
Last edited by Marijuana; 10-11-2012 at 10:38 PM.
Since you like math and CS, it does seem obvious to major in one or both. What you may want to do is come up with sample schedules for each major or various major + courses/minor/major combinations in the other to see how realistic they are for comparison.
Thanks ucb, I have my samples outlined for both math and CS, and they're equally plausible, and I would include most of those courses as my electives.
At this point I guess I'll have to reflect on whether I want to complete CS right now at Cal, or get myself a Math degree (with CS courses too) and head to grad school for a MS Computer Science, which would be better for advanced studies in exciting areas of CS no?
Here are the differences in the courses I would take for each major:
Theory of Sets
Physics 7B, maybe 7C too
Components and Design Techniques for Digital Systems
User Interface Design and Development
Programming Languages and Compilers
Introduction to Artificial Intelligence
Efficient Algorithms and Intractable Problems
Introduction to Database Systems
Combinatorics and Discrete Probability
Quantum Information Science and Technology
Either way I might head to grad school, but if I major in Math I'd definitely head for a MS Computer Science.