Good Catholic College or Science Career?


#1

Ok, ever since I was in school, science was always my best subject. I knew that one day I would have a career as a physician's assistant, a research scientist or a doctor or something like that. I finally realized that I loved outer space and anything to do with it. So that's how I ended up at a community college and now I'm majoring in natural science.
Now I know this sounds ridiculous but I'm trying to get a career in astrophysics. Math was never my strong suit and now I'm trying desperately to understand it and just get through trig!. I feel that I am a math person but I just have some sort of mental block.
Now here's my dilemma. I really, really want to go to Christendom College! My brother went there and it's the perfect college for me! The problem with going there is it will be a huge detour in my pursuit of a career in science. People who get positions in research science don't let anything else distract them and it is all they work on for their entire lives. I almost feel a call to go there. Whether it's a genuine call, I don't know.
Most of the times, science courses from other colleges must be current so if you wait to transfer to another college, let's say, two years , then you have to take those courses over again. I would definitely have to board at Christendom because I live in Pennsylvania so that is another huge expense. In addition, my mom just passed away in june and the only people living with my dad are myself and my sister. I'm not sure what would happen if I left for four years.
I don't even know if I have the math ability to be a any type of scientist and if that's the case, I don't know what else I could be. I really am not interested in anything else except perhaps psychology. I know that if I went to Christendom I would probably major in philosophy and most people I know who went there have not really found a decent job that they liked or, if they have, it has taken them many years. What should I do? Thanks in advance!


#2

If I truly felt a calling to go to Christendom, I'd pursue it to see if the Holy Spirit opens a way for it to happen. Do you think you might have a vocation?


#3

[quote="filios, post:1, topic:276394"]
Ok, ever since I was in school, science was always my best subject. I knew that one day I would have a career as a physician's assistant, a research scientist or a doctor or something like that. I finally realized that I loved outer space and anything to do with it. So that's how I ended up at a community college and now I'm majoring in natural science.
Now I know this sounds ridiculous but I'm trying to get a career in astrophysics. Math was never my strong suit and now I'm trying desperately to understand it and just get through trig!. I feel that I am a math person but I just have some sort of mental block.
Now here's my dilemma. I really, really want to go to Christendom College! My brother went there and it's the perfect college for me! The problem with going there is it will be a huge detour in my pursuit of a career in science. People who get positions in research science don't let anything else distract them and it is all they work on for their entire lives. I almost feel a call to go there. Whether it's a genuine call, I don't know.
Most of the times, science courses from other colleges must be current so if you wait to transfer to another college, let's say, two years , then you have to take those courses over again. I would definitely have to board at Christendom because I live in Pennsylvania so that is another huge expense. In addition, my mom just passed away in june and the only people living with my dad are myself and my sister. I'm not sure what would happen if I left for four years.
I don't even know if I have the math ability to be a any type of scientist and if that's the case, I don't know what else I could be. I really am not interested in anything else except perhaps psychology. I know that if I went to Christendom I would probably major in philosophy and most people I know who went there have not really found a decent job that they liked or, if they have, it has taken them many years. What should I do? Thanks in advance!

[/quote]

Pray, and ask God to show you the right path to take. If this is the college you really want to attend, do it, and your path will develop as you mature. There are other majors, and things that can lead to gainful employment.

About the math...My son is in aerospace engineering. He has ALWAYS been stellar at math, loved it, had no problems, really has a gift for it. He geeks out over it. He's a perfect engineer. I would say that if you haven't got that gift, by now, it's probably not just a block or something. We are all gifted differently and perhaps you will have some other role to play, rather than astrophysics, which even really really smart people have trouble understanding! I know that is a field made up almost entirely of higher math. Don't torture yourself. Go to Christendom if you are able, and keep praying for your vocation to be shown clearly.


#4

It does not seem wise to me to spend several years of your life and money to study something that will not lead to good job opportunities, just because you like the school. The University education should be something that helps you achieve your goals, not a goal in itself. In my opinion, you should look into attending a state University that is going to be cheaper with a wider range of programs and opportunities. You will find out pretty quickly whether studying science will work out for you and if it does not work out, you will be able to change the major to something else.


#5

Try both


#6

[quote="Peter57, post:5, topic:276394"]
Try both

[/quote]

:thumbsup:


#7

[quote="filios, post:1, topic:276394"]
Ok, ever since I was in school, science was always my best subject. I knew that one day I would have a career as a physician's assistant, a research scientist or a doctor or something like that. I finally realized that I loved outer space and anything to do with it. So that's how I ended up at a community college and now I'm majoring in natural science.
Now I know this sounds ridiculous but I'm trying to get a career in astrophysics. Math was never my strong suit and now I'm trying desperately to understand it and just get through trig!. I feel that I am a math person but I just have some sort of mental block.
Now here's my dilemma. I really, really want to go to Christendom College! My brother went there and it's the perfect college for me! The problem with going there is it will be a huge detour in my pursuit of a career in science. People who get positions in research science don't let anything else distract them and it is all they work on for their entire lives. I almost feel a call to go there. Whether it's a genuine call, I don't know.
Most of the times, science courses from other colleges must be current so if you wait to transfer to another college, let's say, two years , then you have to take those courses over again. I would definitely have to board at Christendom because I live in Pennsylvania so that is another huge expense. In addition, my mom just passed away in june and the only people living with my dad are myself and my sister. I'm not sure what would happen if I left for four years.
I don't even know if I have the math ability to be a any type of scientist and if that's the case, I don't know what else I could be. I really am not interested in anything else except perhaps psychology. I know that if I went to Christendom I would probably major in philosophy and most people I know who went there have not really found a decent job that they liked or, if they have, it has taken them many years. What should I do? Thanks in advance!

[/quote]

Okay, I am a little confused. How can Chistendom college by the right college for you when it doesn't even offer the major you are interested in namely Mathematics/Physics. It is great that you want to go to a Catholic College. Perhaps you should look into a couple of different ones and take a visit to see if they fit.

Try Franciscian University of Steubenville... franciscan.edu/UndergraduatePrograms/

or

Thomas Aquinas College thomasaquinas.edu/

As for money issues, you can always get finacial aid so I wouldn't worry that much about it particularly if you are planning on Astrophysics which will require a graduate program in the future anyway.


#8

[quote="filios, post:1, topic:276394"]
Now I know this sounds ridiculous but I'm trying to get a career in astrophysics. Math was never my strong suit and now I'm trying desperately to understand it and just get through trig!. I feel that I am a math person but I just have some sort of mental block.
Now here's my dilemma. I really, really want to go to Christendom College! My brother went there and it's the perfect college for me! The problem with going there is it will be a huge detour in my pursuit of a career in science. People who get positions in research science don't let anything else distract them and it is all they work on for their entire lives. I almost feel a call to go there. Whether it's a genuine call, I don't know.
Most of the times, science courses from other colleges must be current so if you wait to transfer to another college, let's say, two years , then you have to take those courses over again. I would definitely have to board at Christendom because I live in Pennsylvania so that is another huge expense. In addition, my mom just passed away in june and the only people living with my dad are myself and my sister. I'm not sure what would happen if I left for four years.
I don't even know if I have the math ability to be a any type of scientist and if that's the case, I don't know what else I could be. I really am not interested in anything else except perhaps psychology. I know that if I went to Christendom I would probably major in philosophy and most people I know who went there have not really found a decent job that they liked or, if they have, it has taken them many years. What should I do? Thanks in advance!

[/quote]

I'm going to be as honest as I can be here, even though it might generate some disagreement.

You have a career plan.

You have financial issues.

But, you want to attend a college that does not meet your career needs in any way, possibly at great financial hardship to yourself and your family, just because it's Catholic?

I'm not comfortable telling other people what to do, but I can tell you what I would do, based on life experience, and you can probably guess what that would be.

Good luck.


#9

Following up a bit on my own post from yesterday:

[quote="DJK100, post:7, topic:276394"]
As for money issues, you can always get finacial aid so I wouldn't worry that much about it particularly if you are planning on Astrophysics which will require a graduate program in the future anyway.

[/quote]

From the looks of things the original poster may have money issues that go beyond just needing a little money to help pay for college.

Just as I don't judge other people's choices, I don't pretend to know other people's financial situation. But that financial situation has to be considered in making decisions. Going far away from home and paying a lot of money to go to a college just because it's Catholic might be the right call for a middle-class kid who feels it's the right call for them; it might be completely inappropriate for someone in a different situation and with different needs.


#10

Sorrowfully I must say that almost all, if not all, good solid Catholic colleges/universities are liberal arts. My daughter is majoring in geology towards a career in paleontology and I could not find any that had an undergraduate degree in the natural sciences. A few offer nursing degrees but that's as far as it goes. She goes to a state university that has a very nice geology department.


#11

There's another option here that nobody's brought up. If Catholic colleges don't offer what the OP wants to major in or are prohibitively expensive, she could try finding a state school with an active Catholic community. Here are two of them:

The University of Kansas: st-lawrence.org

Texas A&M University: aggiecatholic.org/


#12

[quote="SJG1759, post:11, topic:276394"]
There's another option here that nobody's brought up. If Catholic colleges don't offer what the OP wants to major in or are prohibitively expensive, she could try finding a state school with an active Catholic community.

[/quote]

Chiming in here, this is a terrific idea.

My aunt in fact attended the state college in her town and was active with the Catholic community at the college.

Given the circumstances this might be a much better bet than putting yourself in a hole financially to attend a Catholic college.

Good luck.


#13

I am sorry you felt I was judging his choice. I was not. I am simply pointing out that if he wants to attend a Catholic school that offers him the career choices he is looking for there are financial options that he can choose. I never presumed to know what his home life is like only that if he felt money was a limiting factor than that need not be the case. That is all.


#14

[quote="DJK100, post:13, topic:276394"]
I am sorry you felt I was judging his choice. I was not. I am simply pointing out that if he wants to attend a Catholic school that offers him the career choices he is looking for there are financial options that he can choose. I never presumed to know what his home life is like only that if he felt money was a limiting factor than that need not be the case. That is all.

[/quote]

And apologies to you; I was not accusing you of "judging his choice" and did not intend to sound as if I was.

In the earlier post I just wanted to make it clear that I was not judging. If that person concluded that he was going to Christendom College I would respect that adult decision even though it was not what I would do in those circumstances.

This is what I was really responding to:

[quote="DJK100, post:13, topic:276394"]

As for money issues, you can always get finacial aid so I wouldn't worry that much about it particularly if you are planning on Astrophysics which will require a graduate program in the future anyway.

[/quote]

And what I was suggesting was somebody's circumstances might be such that they should worry about it. If someone comes from an upper-class family and they only need x dollars in financial aid and everything will be fine, that's one thing. For someone from other circumstances, that might be completely inadequate; it might mean, for example, not being home to help a family member, financially or otherwise.

Even if that person "could" attend Christendom, he was concerned about job prospects, and it might be a good idea to pause to consider whether it would be worth the financial sacrifice as opposed to going to a state college or community college where you could save a lot of money and maybe have superior job prospects.


#15

[quote="signit, post:14, topic:276394"]
And apologies to you; I was not accusing you of "judging his choice" and did not intend to sound as if I was.

[/quote]

No worries. A simple misunderstanding.

In the earlier post I just wanted to make it clear that I was not judging. If that person concluded that he was going to Christendom College I would respect that adult decision even though it was not what I would do in those circumstances.

Fair enough.

And what I was suggesting was somebody's circumstances might be such that they should worry about it. If someone comes from an upper-class family and they only need x dollars in financial aid and everything will be fine, that's one thing. For someone from other circumstances, that might be completely inadequate; it might mean, for example, not being home to help a family member, financially or otherwise

.

I agree to an extent. It may make sense going to a place that is cheaper however if you truly feel that going to a particular school is the right option for you then financial issues can be dealt with -- naturally a persons individual circumstances, like need to be at home to assist a family member needs to be considered. However all things being equal, it may cost you more financially to go to a private school but you always have the options of loans/scholarships to help ease that burden. In my particular case I put myself through college and graduate school with loans and work without family assistance. My point being is that it is nice if you have the family support but choosing the correct place for you where you are happy and can excel is also very important. Discounting a school solely on financial concerns I believe is selling yourself short because college is much more than just an education -- it is also an "experience." It is, for many people, the first time to grow-up and really be treated as an adult -- having to make many adult decsions.

Even if that person "could" attend Christendom, he was concerned about job prospects, and it might be a good idea to pause to consider whether it would be worth the financial sacrifice as opposed to going to a state college or community college where you could save a lot of money and maybe have superior job prospects.

I agree 100% and is why in my original post I questioned wether Christendom was truly the right choice for him considering it lacked the courses he was interested in. I simply stated that if he wanted to go to a Catholic college he should look into other Catholic Universities that offer him those choices.


#16

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