Daily Toreador: Business ranked most popular major at Tech
With 42 majors to choose from, the Texas Tech College of Arts and Sciences is home to more students than any other college on campus. However, the major with the highest enrollment is in the Rawls College of Business Administration.
In a list from Valerie Paton, vice provost for planning and assessment, the RCOBA claims two spots in the top 10 majors at Texas Tech with business administration as the number one and undeclared business in third.
The lead adviser for the college of business, Megan Balko, said the majors had such high enrollment because both were for general business degrees. Students later specify a major, most often marketing, management, accounting or finance.
Still, she said, the institution of business is growing because students recognize business degrees as being useful.
"The job placement rate is really good," Balko said. "Even in a down economy, a business degree is valuable."
The business school's undergraduate program is growing, she said, and its reputation is getting better, not only for Tech's undergraduate students, but also among universities across the state.
Students are also more inclined to choose these majors as a way to get to law or medical school, Balko said.
Between these two majors, exercise and sports science takes second place with 1,313 students enrolled.
The major has four tracks, said Jodi Dillard, senior adviser to undergraduates in ESS, and the variety encourages participants, as each track is different.
The track with the largest enrollment is exercise and sports sciences, she said, which focuses on the medical side of the field. Other tracks are sports studies, with a focus on business; exercise health promotion, with a focus on fitness; and the Physical Education Teacher Education program, which trains students to become PE teachers or coaches.
The variety of careers students can get with these degrees is also attractive, Dillard said. Students can work in anything from law, to cardiac rehabilitation to owning, their own gyms.
"These are all people who want to learn about the human body," she said. "These are people who want to make other people's lives better."
As this year's students graduate, Dillard said, the job market will welcome them with open arms. As baby boomers age, she explained, they will look for ways to stay active, whether it is through personal training or just going to the gym. No matter what, Dillard said, an aging population provides job security for this year's ESS graduates.
ESS was just one of four Arts and Sciences majors to make the list, along with psychology, biology and undeclared arts and sciences.
Those within the College of Arts and Sciences work to make students as well rounded as possible, making sure science majors take a foreign language, and art majors take science classes.
John Zak, the associate dean for research a the College of Arts and Sciences, said this creates a broad worldview and improves overall education, rather than just training someone for their career.
"You never know what aspects of your education you will have to draw from," he said.
No matter which department a student is in within the college, Zak said, they will get an excellent education.
"It's one of Tech's hidden qualities," he said. "We have very qualified teachers."
More specifically, he said, biology, math, ESS and psychology in the College of Arts and Sciences each have earned the Department of Excellence in Teaching Award.
The remaining top 10 is rounded out with mechanical engineering, architecture, pre-engineering and multidisciplinary studies in the College of Education.
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