Good major or good college?

Ok, so right now I’m an environmental health major. (For those who don’t know it’s basically like a health inspector) and I am a sophomore with a 3.4 gpa at ECU. I was planning on NC State for a more prestigious school and a urban environment. The problem is that the closest thing nc state has to an ENvironmental health major is environmental science. While I could still technically getsome Environmental health jobs with a science degree, an EH degree is more specific with what I want to the do. So to wrap it up, what’s better… A so-so degree from a good school, or a perfect degree from a so-so school? (Ps. I would loose some money and time because some of my courses don’t transfer and I would have to basically start over.)

Lets step back for a little perspective. Back in the day, say the 1950’s or 1960’s, even many prestigious state schools like UCLA were commuter schools. Not much college atmosphere, really. And people were happy to attend because it was their ticket to a better life. They didn’t expect to “have it all”, they were content to make things better. Not sure when that all changed, when the college years became the end-all.

If the degree you want is at ECU and you don’t have the chance to transfer to a “better” school with that major for whatever reason (finances, your grades, whatever) then ECU sounds like the best choice. If you want an urban environment, then after you graduate look for jobs in urban areas.

And to belabor the point a bit, what are you doing to prepare for life after college? Are you lining up internships? Taking part in student groups related to the field? Using the resources of the career center? Or, like too many, figuring that the degree is enough to make employers come a-calling?

Agree with mikemac. Use your time at ECU to develop a network that will serve you well after your graduate: Find the alums who graduated with your major and are working in your field and do informational interviewing with them. Talk to faculty about how to land the jobs/internships you want and which are the best graduate schools for further study in your field, should you decide you want/need a masters or a Phd. Figure out which are the top journals in your field and start reading them so you know where the jobs are and what the issues are. Are there research opportunities that are relevant? All this is a better use of your time than transferring to a school that has an urban environment and some better name recognition from people who don’t know your field.