Top 10 Weirdest Things You Can Major In

I think one of the coolest things about college campuses is that every student you talk to can be on a different career path. You may sit down at a table and find yourself seated with a future doctor, teacher, and newspaper journalist. While everyone knows you have to go to college to join these professions, people would be surprised to learn how many things you can major in at college. As such, this article will list the Top 10 Weirdest Things You Can Actually Major In. Not only are these majors vastly different from what people typically major in, some of them are so obscure that people will be surprised that you can even take classes on them. It is also important to remember that just because these majors may seem weird to us, does not mean that they will not lead to vastly successful careers.
The Top Ten
1 Mortuary Science

Growing up in a rural area, as a kid I had multiple people tell me that morticians make a fair amount of money. This used to be a high paying career which did not require a college degree, but it appears that institutions of higher learning are finally getting in on the embalming action. Several colleges allow students to major in Mortuary Science, a course of study that teaches them the various methods for handling corpses and preparing them for funeral services. People die everywhere, so this career path has some job security. I'm not sure, however, how comfortable I would feel at a college party telling a girl that I play with dead bodies for my major. Some prominent schools have picked up this major, including a couple of Ivy Leagues.

2 Ventriloquism

Our next entry is the one that actually inspired the creation of this list. When I attended West Virginia University, you would occasionally see a small group of students carrying around large dolls. These dolls were actually ventriloquist dummies. WVU is one of the few major universities in the country where someone can major in Puppeteering. This performing arts degree prepares its students for a career performing as a ventriloquist. I never had the opportunity to take any of these courses (and I'm not sure I would have elected to take them, even if I did) but I believe they split into two categories. The basic courses teach the students various tips for performing with their puppets, while the later courses provide them with practical experience developing their routine.

3 Turf Grass Science

Anyone who has ever spent time in Happy Valley can tell you that sports is a huge component of the Penn State culture. This extends beyond an undying love for Joe Paterno, at Penn State you can actually major in Turfgrass Science. This major loosely falls under Facilities Management. It instructs students on the practices and methodologies for maintaining the turf at various sports facilities. Aside from being dreadfully dull, I can't imagine that there is too great a demand for this type of work. Most large stadiums already have a large team that handles their turf, and those seeking to stay in Pennsylvania only have a few options for jobs upon graduation. If you want a major where you can get as close as possible to professional sports teams, however, it is hard to do better than a job where you maintain the very ground that they stand on.

4 Farrier Science

Considering that I had to look up this entry just to know what it was, I'd say that it pretty safely fulfills the obscurity requirement. Farrier Science is essentially the art of horseshoeing. For hundreds of years, horses have been used by men for a variety of tasks. All these toils take their toll on the beasts, so various methods have been developed to prolong their livelihood. One such method is horseshoeing, when a flat metal plate is nailed to the bottom of a horse's hoof in order to prevent harm to the hoof. This procedure is extremely old, but some colleges in the U.S. Midwest aren't leaving it up to families to teach it to their youngsters. They're actually providing Farrier Science as an academic major, and rumor has it that this field of study can lead to a fairly lucrative career.

5 Meme Studies

With the job market in many college-based careers floundering, schools have had to develop new programs and majors to attract students in the 21 st centur y. Midwestern University has taken this to the absolute extreme, students there can actually major in Meme Studies. Students in this major use memes as a lens with which to examine modern society. I have written in previous articles that memes have replaced political cartoons as an important source for news and entertainment, and this program at Midwestern seems to have encapsulated this idea. Even better, these students can spend hours perusing the internet, and actually pass it off as studying. Don't be surprised if this innovative major is picked up by other universities seeking to increase their enrollment.

6 Beatles, Popular Music, and Society

I have been pretty critical of some of the entries on this list, but I have to admit that I think this major is really cool. At a college in the United Kingdom (of course) students can officially choose a specialized major called Beatles, Popular Music, and Society. This major lets students "examine the significance of the music of The Beatles in the construction of identities, audiences, ethnicities and industries, and localities." Basically, these classes lecture students on various aspects of sociology and history, through the scope of the legendary rock and roll band. The Beatles were important cultural icons during a very tumultuous period of English and world history, so this outlook is a very cool way of looking at the time period.

7 Bagpiping

It has always been strange to me that students can forego majoring in Music, and can instead choose to major in the performance of a specific instrument. The most outrageous example of this that I could find was a handful of colleges which allow students to major in Bagpiping. This is exactly as it sounds, these Bagpiping students are instructed how to play the bagpipes, a hugely important cultural instrument in Scotland. I only spent a few years in the band in middle school, but I could not imagine spending all four years of my college career focused on the use of a single instrument. Even more strange would be to focus on an instrument which is hardly ever used in popular music.

8 Bowling Industry Management

I spent some time interning for the City Archives in Pittsburgh, processing various historical documents for their collections. I once stumbled upon four large boxes filled with petitions. All of these petitions (completely filled with names) were in response to a 20 th century law that would have placed a special tax on bowling alleys. The enormous response to this law shows how popular bowling is in the United States, but people would still be surprised to learn that you can actually major in Bowling Industry Management at a handful of universities. This major teaches its students the ins and outs of the bowling industry, and tries to provide them with the skills to open, and manage, their own bowling alleys.

9 Surf Science and Technology

This major might not be the most practical one that I've ever heard of, but I would be lying if I said that it didn't sound like fun. At least two schools on the west coast of the United States offer Surf Science and Technology as an official major. The classes for this major don't have much to do with the art of surfing itself, it is more about how to design surfboards and other surfing equipment. Given how popular these products are in California, I'm guessing there must be some demand for these kinds of designs. Maybe if Boston ever unfreezes, I'll be able to try out some of the products designed by Surf Science and Technology students at these west coast universities.

10 Auctioneering

Anyone who has seen an auction in person can tell you that auctioneering is certainly an amazing skill. I think these people would be surprised to learn, however, that many people actually go to college to become auctioneers. The major of Auctioneering, which is offered at several universities across the United States, teaches its students the various business aspects of holding an auction. While these events have been glorified in movies and T.V. shows, they are actually serious business dealings, and the people who run these auctions have to know how to act accordingly. One question which was not answered in my search, is whether these programs offer an entire class that teaches the future auctioneers how to give off their famous cadences.

The Contenders
11 Gender Studies

Imagine getting a degree and everyone with a brain automatically parts ways with you.

12 Sports Management
13 Feminist Lit

At least with degrees from the other listed majors, like Farrier,Turf Grass, and even Bowling Management, you can get a good-paying job. Mortuary Science is not for everybody, but not only pays well, it provides a valuable service. A Feminist Lit graduate has zero marketable skills, and provides benefit for nobody.

14 Circus Arts
15 Mathematics
16 Accounting
17 Indian Studies

What kind of person would major in this?

18 Decision Sciences
19 Retail Management
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