Thursday, July 11, 2013

Why I Love What I Study

Recently I have had several people ask me what I am studying at BYU and why I choose it. I get to study Social Studies Teaching which will eventually certify me to teach any subject relating to anthropology, sociology, psychology, political science, economics, geography, and history at a high school level. I love it and there are so many reasons for this.

I find it really interesting

I have the opportunity to study so many different subjects that I am never bored. I am always excited for my next class in any of the different subjects because I don't get burnt out of any single topic. This variety also shows me the bigger picture of what is occurring in the world. In a previous semester I took, among other general courses,  history, geography, and political science classes concurrently and the number of correlations between the three blew my mind. I could get really nerdy about this, but my husband says that I start to get ridiculous, so I won't go into examples, but they do exist. Trust me.

It makes me a better citizen

This might be a little bit of a stretch, but I am a better citizen of the United States and of the world by the variety of things I learn. First of all, seeing so many different sides to any single event or way of though forces me to think critically about what I am learning. I find holes in logic, test the credibility of documents and accounts and just generally be critical in any way you can imagine. Sometimes this is difficult when studying dictators and some of their awful policies, but being critical of all sides of a story is key. This has helped me form opinions and beliefs about world and national policies and events so that when the time comes that I am presented with a choice, I am prepared and confident in my decision.

I can make a difference to teenagers

I am so excited to be a high school teacher! By the time students reach high school they know what is expected of them, whether they choose to do it or not. I especially want to teach juniors and seniors. By this time they are little adults preparing to enter the world, either through college or the work force. I fully believe that high schoolers are our future and that it is our responsibility to prepare them. Specifically in regards to the economics and political science part of my major, I want to prepare teenagers to become active parts of their community in a positive way. My biggest goal? To be able to connect with my students in a way that allows them to trust me and realize that I am there to be an ally for them.

I have options for the future

It is impossible to know what the future will hold for me and my family but it is still possible to make limited plans. For example, by studying education I can work full time, part time, as an infrequent substitute or not at all depending on our family situation at the time. The educational system also gives me the opportunity to have holidays and summers of with children if the time comes that I need to work while my kids are young. From a professional perspective, by becoming certified in so many subjects, I am able to teach multiple classes based from the needs of the school and therefore become more marketable.

It strengthens my testimony of the Gospel

As members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints we are told that we should "study and learn, and become acquainted with all good books, and with languages, tongues, and people" (D&C 90:15). I get to fulfill this on a daily basis and I love it. The more I learn about other people, their cultures, and their beliefs, the more I grow to love them as fellow humans and sons and daughters of God. I also have the regular opportunity to juxtapose my beliefs and those of others. Similar to the critical thinking I talked about earlier, this cements my testimony and beliefs in an unshakable way. I am daily becoming better prepared to

So there you have it. It may not be the most eloquent explanation, but this is how I feel. It might be hard to imagine that a 22 year old still loves school, but when my personality combines with my wonderful major that's what happens. Who knows, maybe I will even keep working (at a much slower pace) and get more education when I am done with this degree.


  1. Teenagers are the best! It is amazing to work with them and then they grow up and become your friends. My life has been blessed with the opportunity to love and teach the youth and be loved and taught by them.

    psst. psst. Don't tell Dad, but I secretly love that you have transitioned from loving math and engineering to anthropology! Maybe there is a bit of me in you after all! You are truly an LDS woman, you are gifted in so many areas!

  2. Hey I'm social studies teaching too! It's pretty awesome. If you ever want to come observe in my classroom or anything let me know! I'd be happy to talk to you about it! :) I love fellow social studies people.


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