How Margaritaville University Changed my Major

At Margaritaville University, I major in Island Studies, with a minor in Marketing. At Northern Kentucky University, I major in Media Informatics, with a Minor in French. But that’s not the path I started down five years ago.

I started college with a dream to be a theatre playwright. I was working on a theatre major (my French minor was the only constant throughout my college career). I was having fun, but I realized that theatre was more my hobby than my future dream job, and that worked for me. I started searching for a new major.

Of all majors to choose, I selected chemistry. I think I was more interested in the money I would make than the work I would have to put in. I always enjoyed experiments and balancing equations, but once we got into the theoretical concepts, I was lost – lost not only in my chemistry homework but also in the ever-important question: what do I want to be when I grow up?

I ventured over toward the engineering department. I had always enjoyed designing things, and thought that I had finally found my niche. Plus, my dad would be there to help if I got confused. I stuck with mechanical engineering technology for quite a while – two years . . . minus a study-abroad semester in France (you can check out my travels here).

After a while, I asked myself: am I doing this for me, or for my dad?

At this same time, this wonderful program called the Margaritaville College Ambassador Program was founded (now known as Margaritaville University). I applied the second I heard about it, and I still remember Jared being shocked that (at the time) I had attended 11 Jimmy Buffett concerts, and I’d only recently turned 21. I quickly fell in love with the program, and fell in love with social media marketing and content creation.

I was still struggling between engineering and some form of media degree, since I wasn’t sure NKU even offered a program like that. I dug around and found Media Informatics, a program that mashed together all of the best bits from computer science, graphic design, website design, video and photography, and any digital communication. I was in love. So, since hammock engineering isn’t yet a program offered at NKU, I decided to switch my major for the third time – in my senior year – and study Media Informatics.

I am now nearly finished with my Media Informatics and French studies, and I’ll (hopefully) be graduating in December. While I may not have followed a traditional in-and-out path for my college career, I’m glad that my journey unfolded as it did. There are elements from my previous majors in Media Informatics; it was the perfect catch-all degree for me.

And no, NKU is not located anywhere near a beach, and people still sometimes are confused when I say Margaritaville University. But it gives me an opportunity to share my love for the community that the Parrotheads have created: one of relaxation and escapism – something that is much needed on college campuses. And while our homecoming theme may never be “Back to the Island,” I know that “I Have Found Me a Home” at Northern Kentucky University.

Abigail Hull is a Margaritaville college ambassador at Northern Kentucky University. You can follow her Margaritaville adventures on Instagram, Twitter & Vero @abigailmhull. Learn more about Margaritaville University here.

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