The Master Plan #3 // Changing Your Mind

Sometimes things change. You change your mind, you alter your direction, you make a different decision – and everything changes with it. The same happened when I changed my mind about my master program.

As you might remember from previous The Master Plan installments, I decided already pretty early in my bachelor’s what master program I wanted to pursue. During my second year at UCR I decided I wanted to do New Media & Digital Culture at Utrecht University. At the time, this made perfect sense to me. I completed a track in Theatre & Media studies; my university college is connected to Utrecht University, which should make the transition easier; my Boyfriend already studied at Utrecht University; a lot of my friends were already or were planning on studying in Utrecht; I thought having a master’s degree in media studies and not necessarily on journalism would help me differentiate myself from others in the field; after three years of research I thought I should continue with that; I thought, I thought, I thought… Everything seemed to fit just right, when I decided upon New Media & Digital Culture at UU – this would be the perfect choice for me.

And so I started working on my application. I filled out the forms, I wrote the samples and I triple-checked everything. My application had to be perfect, because this was the perfect master’s program for me. I had a background in media studies and education, so I would perform research on the interplay between both fields. I would be able to help young people navigating their way through the digital culture we live in and I truly felt like it was the right thing for me to do. So I submitted my application at UU back in February and the waiting began. I thought I would feel happy once I fully submitted my application, that I would feel relieved and confident, but instead I became nervous, really nervous. Did I fill in everything correctly? Would they support my research proposals? And, most significantly, would they think I was good enough? I started to doubt myself, my previous education and work experiences – things I used to be so, so proud of. And that’s the point where I realized that maybe this wasn’t the right decision after all.

For me, that realization was already hard to accept. I don’t like to change my mind, I don’t like to alter my course and I really don’t like admitting that I made a wrong decision, especially one that I was so sure of. So after some deep thinking, some soul-searching and more than some cake-eating, I decided I needed to take a few steps back in my master plan, and look around the seemingly bottomless pit of master programs again. Initially, I thought it would calm my nerves if I had a great back-up plan, so that I would still have a suitable plan in case I didn’t get accepted at UU. Instead, I would find a program that made me feel incredibly excited and, perhaps most importantly, confident.

And so I applied to the master program Media & Journalism at Erasmus University Rotterdam. Once more, I filled out all the forms, I wrote all the samples and I made absolutely sure to tick all of the boxes, before finally submitting it. As I clicked on that “send” button, I didn’t feel nervous at all. Instead, I felt excited. And two weeks later, I got the email announcing my acceptance. And in that moment, cheesy as it might be, I knew I had finally made the right decision. Now, I’m going to study journalism, which is what I always wanted to do, which has always been my passion, which would always be my future, and I couldn’t be happier.



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