More than 400 Buffalo State students explored their academic and career options during a campuswide Major and Minor Fair on Thursday, October 26, in the Campbell Student Union Social Hall. Forty-three departments and interdisciplinary units representing more than 200 major, minor, and certificate programs took part in the fair, which was designed to help students learn more about Buffalo State’s vast curricular offerings by speaking with faculty members and students enrolled in programs.
The significance of the event is underscored as higher education institutions increasingly focus on retention rates. Leadership in three divisions—Academic Affairs, Student Affairs, and Enrollment Management—provided support for the fair.
“We’re all in this together,” said Kelly M. Frothingham, interim dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, and one of the Major and Minor Fair’s organizers. “Recruitment and retention is not just up to Enrollment Management. It’s up to all of us.”
About 400 students at Buffalo State have not yet declared a major, including about 200 first-year students enrolled this fall. Buffalo State’s percentage of undeclared underclassmen, at 7.6 percent, is the second-highest among SUNY’s 13 university colleges (formerly known as SUNY’s comprehensive colleges).
“We all need to be aware of the fact that we have a large population of students that start as undeclared, but also another group who have a major declared, but it’s not the right one,” Frothingham said. “The Major and Minor Fair can help them find another path that is still right here at Buffalo State.”
The Major and Minor Fair convened 43 departments and interdisciplinary units representing over 200 major, minor, and certificate programs at Buffalo State.
The Major and Minor Fair also assisted students looking for second majors, minors, certificates, and microcredentials. And it enabled students to connect with staff members from Academic Commons, the Career and Professional Education Center (CAPE), and Student Accessibility Services as well.
Those who attended the fair were encouraged to continue learning about the programs that interested them, and also to schedule an appointment with their advisors in the Academic Advising Center or their academic departments, and to contact CAPE to learn more about how part-time jobs, internships, and experiential learning opportunities can help them reach their career goals.
The Major and Minor Fair will be held again next fall, with planning already underway.