10 Weirdest College Majors You Never Knew Existed

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Choosing a major is an important decision with the potential to affect your life for decades to come. Along with impacting the careers you’re best-positioned to pursue, your choice of major can influence earning potential and even where in the country you live. While you’re probably familiar with many of the popular major optionslike English, biology, and historyyou might not realize that some schools offer less common concentrations, as well. Keep reading to learn about the weirdest college majors you can pursue.

 

10 Weirdest College Majors You Never Knew Existed

 

For those who prefer walking the road less taken, traditional college coursework might not hold as much appeal. Here are some of the weirdest college majors for students to consider:

 

1. Turfgrass Science

Penn State

 

If you’re happiest on the golf course, you might want to consider majoring in Turfgrass Science. Available through Penn State’s College of Agricultural Sciences, this concentration focuses on basic and applied sciences and business management as they relate to the production and maintenance of turf. As a bonus, students will have the opportunity to intern at local businesses during their college careers. You can use this degree to pursue a job in golf course maintenance, sod production, or research, among other industries.

 

2. Comic Art

Minneapolis College of Art and Design

 

Do you spend your days perusing the pages of graphic novels like Watchmen and Lock and Key? If you prefer your books with pictures and have a talent for design, you might want to consider majoring in comic art. Along with teaching students the history of comic art and publishing, the program provides instruction on character development, storyboarding, color, and composition. Consider this major if you’re passionate about working as a comic book writer or illustrator.

 

3. Adventure Education

Plymouth State University

 

Who says you have to do all your learning inside the classroom? This New Hampshire major lets students get an education in the Great Outdoors. Sample courses include Rock Climbing Fundamentals and Whitewater Kayaking. Once you graduate, you can expect to find a job at a state or national park, or a facility that offers outdoor adventure programs for children and adults. 

 

4. Puppet Arts

University of Connecticut

 

One of the weirdest college majors out there, Puppet Arts involves the study and production of puppetry. Offered through UConn’s School of Fine Arts, this program exposes students to courses like Scene Design, Marionette Performance, and Trends in Contemporary American Puppetry. Wondering what to do with a degree in this field? A Puppet Arts major prepares you to work for a school, museum, theatre, or television show.

 

5. Theme Park Engineering

California State University

 

Some folks are happiest sitting atop a 400-foot roller coaster in the seconds before it plummets toward the ground. If you dream of designing amusement park attractions for people worldwide to enjoy, you might want to apply to Cal State’s theme park engineering major. Along with electrical and civil engineering, the program includes coursework related to mechanical, hydraulic, and pneumatic control and engineering design. With a degree in this field, you’ll be well on your way to a career as a theme park engineer. 

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6. Viticulture and Enology

Cornell University

 

It’s unlikely for high schoolers to be experts on wineand for good reason! However, if you are fascinated by pinot noirs and proseccos, this New York-based viticulture program is a logical choice. Along with teaching students the science behind soil, grapes, and vintification, the major focuses on the challenges specific to wine growing in the Northeast. As a bonus, students have the opportunity to intern at one of New York’s 1,400 vineyards and wineries while earning their degrees. This major is best for aspiring to work in wine making, vineyard management, or the wine business.

 

7. Packaging Science

Michigan State University

 

While it may seem fairly straightforward, packaging is a science with many behind-the-scenes considerations, such as materials, design, and environmental impact. At Michigan State University, you can get a Bachelor’s degree, Master’s degree, or PhD in Packaging Science. Before you scoff at this unusual degree, you should know that graduates have an average starting salary of $63,237 and a job placement rate of 97%. Grads of the School of Packaging go on to be packaging engineers/designers, consumer behavior analysts, packaging operators, and food scientists.

 

8. Costume Technology

DePaul University

 

Is your favorite part of going to the movies admiring the incredible costumes? If you love fashion, you might want to think about majoring in costume technology. Part of DePaul’s Theatre School, this concentration immerses students in the art and architecture of costume design while providing them with valuable information on managing a fashion business. Graduates go on to work in TV, commercial, and film costuming. They also break into fashion design, prop management, and even advertising. 

 

9. Race Track Industry

University of Arizona

 

Among the weirdest college majors on the list, a degree in race track industry studies prepares students to work in training and managing race horses. An intriguing choice for current and aspiring equestrians, the program includes courses like race track marketing and media relations and function of the equine athlete. Based on your specific career objectives, you can opt to concentrate on the business or equine management end of the field. Two Kentucky Derby winners have graduated from the program. 

 

10. Toy Design

Otis College of Art and Design

 

Creative students and those who have always felt young at heart may be interested in Otis’ Toy Design major. Along with coursework related to game theory, child psychology, and game design, the program offers instruction in conceptual drawing, sculpting, and prototyping. By the time you graduate, you’ll be prepared to design the next great plush toy, action figure, or even video game. Additionally, students leave school with a portfolio showcasing their talents across various toy groups. 

 

How to Decide on a College Major

 

While many students enter college undecided, it’s helpful to have an idea of what subject matter you want to study. After all, not every school offers the same major programs, and the field you want to pursue could affect your choice of college. Below are some tips on choosing a college major while you’re still in high school.

 

1. List Out Your Favorite School Subjects and Hobbies 

 

If you’re struggling to find a major, start by compiling a list of your top activities both inside and outside the classroom. For example, if you enjoy your English classes and love keeping up with current events, a career in journalism or online media might be the way to go. On the other hand, students who favor their math classes and spend hours playing Minecraft could be destined for a future in computer science or video game design. 

 

2. Consider Your Strengths and Weaknesses 

 

The sad truth is that we aren’t always good at the things we wish we were. While you might be intrigued by the idea of a career as an actor, a fear of public performance could prevent you from succeeding in this field. For best results, choose a major that aligns with your strengths and natural talent.

 

3. Talk to Working Professionals

 

Just because a major or career sounds interesting in theory doesn’t mean you have a good sense of what employees in that field do on a daily basis. One of the best ways to determine if a major is a good fit is to speak to professionals currently using their degrees. Start by talking to your parents, teachers, or school counselors to see if they know anyone you can sit down with. For best results, show up for your phone or in-person interview with a list of questions to ask.

 

Choosing a major is only half the battle. If you’re having trouble narrowing your list of colleges, count on CollegeVine to be in your corner. We created a data-based chancing engine based on actual results from students around the country. All you have to do is create an account, and then you can use our free school list builder to find colleges based on your preferences and chances of acceptance. We look forward to helping you find your dream college.

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April Maguire
Blogger at CollegeVine
Short bio
A graduate of the Master of Professional Writing program at USC, April Maguire taught freshman composition while earning her degree. Over the years, she has worked as a writer, editor, tutor, and content manager. Currently, she operates a freelance writing business and lives in Los Angeles with her husband and their three rowdy cats.