Originally Posted by XenoX101
Interesting, but wouldn't my success in getting internships depend on my education and thus my major? I mean if work experience was all that mattered then what distinction would employers make among interns in order to pick the right one?
Of course -- you will need to talk (or write) your way into your first job. You'll leverage everything you have. If you took a specific course that you can say prepares you for this entry level job better than, say, that Art major or that English major, maybe that will work. But once you start working it's going to be what work have you done lately. If you are three years out of school and have had a string of part-time jobs with various duties, you probably will have better information about yourself to leverage than "I took Dynamics of Dysfunctional Families four years ago." The BA education is general and built to last a lifetime. The potential edge individual courses might give you as you talk yourself into employment, at 22, into entry-level jobs, is not that great and then fleeting. All kinds of chemistry majors rise to head the sales department in chemical companies etc. People go where their skills take them, and you will be developing skills your whole life. The BA is not going to give you the work skills of anyone with more than a few years in the professional workforce.
Originally Posted by Rambo
You can be involved in anything you want. You should get your degree in something that will actually have a chance of landing you a job in the event that you can't get hired in your profession of choice for whatever reason.
Job market in US has been been awful for everyone under 35, generally speaking, since the 1990s. Very few majors have much chance of landing you a job all by themselves. And when they do, the jobs are not permanent cradle-to-grave type jobs. Involvement is your education is important but there are only a few degrees that offer much chance of placing a student immediately, and he is talking about Sociology, so it's hard to recommend polymer engineering, elementary education, computer science, etc.
Originally Posted by Milpool
I would suggest a double major perhaps. Get one degree in a major that is an actual job title, e.g. civil engineering or architecture (since you mentioned city planning), and the other in sociology. It is a hedge and at least allows you the option of a different career should you have trouble finding your ideal position. The other thing I would suggest is to maybe focus on epidemiology or community health, etc. You can make a big difference that way, and if you focus on geriatrics in some way, you'll probably be guaranteed a job at least in the US with the baby boomers all retiring soon. As for the internships, having a solid skill that is in demand will really help you get the internship. When I was an undergrad, I snatched a few internships because I could write code. The positions had nothing to do with software, but they wanted custom databases and stuff and I was able to provide that.
This is good advice. You will learn to leverage whatever skills you have as you peddle yourself on the job market. Double majors might make good talking points, but I still think the best thing you can have is work experience elsewhere in a comparable job -- with glowing recommendations, evident mastery of the jargon, personal and professional relationships with people in various related organizations, etc. Work is what will get you better work. In most cases the degree is necessary to start work but once you start, it's what you've done in the workforce lately that matters most.
Originally Posted by harvey_birdman
You have another year of high school yet. You're going to change your mind a dozen times between now and age 20. And honestly you probably shouldn't go to college, and certainly not for a degree as worthless as sociology. It's a scam and you'll come out owing a boatload of money working as a probation officer for $28k a year with huge student loans that you'll never be able to pay back. Go to trade school to be a plumber. If you want to help people there is no better occupation to really help desperate people.
Everyone should have a friend or uncle urging the career of a plumber. Also farming: more people should encourage high school students to skip college and go straight into farming.
Originally Posted by Valor
If you get into a really top tiered school, and the economy improves, you should be able to find any job. If not, well your degree doesn't have too many jobs atm. It's mostly go into another field, or if you want to continue, you'd need a doctorate. At least that's my perception, my best friend is persuing a doctorate in sociology atm at UNC.
I think it's true that where you get your degree will matter to employers as much as what you majored in (provided, again, it's not one of the few very specialized BAs like organic chemistry or computer science). Also don't underestimate the value of a degree from a large public school that graduates tons of people. People are proud. A humanities or social sciences degree from UNC might be a better asset on Chapel Hill applications than the same degree from some distant elite school.