Okay, first off let me provide an overview of my educational past:
Just as any kid I went through school, and then high school with an integrated prep course for getting into a top notch college in my country. I should admit, I loved my subjects (physics, chemistry, math and biology). The faculty was great. I showed a lot of enthusiasm and my then teacher appreciated it.
However, naturally at that age I had many obstacles: Peer pressure, very few friends, was bullied, and I was pretty desperate to get into the social atmosphere (The cool group, the small talk, back stabs, etc.) So, that bad habit stuck on to me (that is, always trying to pretend, so as to be accepted socially). And it has got in the way of my personal life, and behaviorally I feel like I'm really messed up in some way.
I got into the 7th best college in my country. I did not take a bridge year. I was pretty confident about getting into the Electronics and Communications branch, and I did.
I've learned a lot in college, met people with a varied persona, read a lot, and also learned that there can be a wide set of career paths one can choose nowadays.
I have varied interests that I'm good at: Art painting, murals, sketching, fashion design, stitching, singing, acting, impersonating famous scenes from movies, or people in real life (like some of my very comical faculties).
I'm now completing my 3rd year in college and I don't like it here, or at least in this branch. That said, I do like some subjects like DSP, Embedded system design, mechatronics, but I can't imagine this as my long term career! Everybody around me is talking about and praising this industry: "Oh, the amazing technology", "This wonderful company", "the internship opportunities", etc. I'm so confused, I'm just slipping into something I don't like! And I have a burning desire to try my hand at something in the arts (acting, theatre, and fashion design).
I've hinted about my displeasure with the current state of things to my parents, but I have never told them anything about my "plan" for life. My parents are overprotective of me. They feel the need to know everything about me. I am pretty open with them about most thing, but it gets annoying when I see my father's hidden dissatisfaction on my refusal to his suggestion about going to the US for MS or for MBA. In addition, when I spend my free time sketching, stitching, or graphic designing, an hour later, artfully, my parents would ask me something like: "Don't you have assignments to do", "don't you have exams in a week", or "how do your friends get 9 point grades?". Sometimes my college faculties say stuff like, "You're so good at this subject, why are your grades just mediocre?" When it comes to my career, it's up to me. I don't like anybody to push me into their version of "secure", "high-paying", but non-adventurous, and routine career.
All hell breaks loose in the house when there is a discussion about "what do you want to do in life?"
Honestly, my parents are not very happy at the thought of me going into the film industry or fashion, and I don't stand up for myself, afraid that I might fail if I go down that path, afraid in the end they were right and I would be the family example of a "ruined career" girl in the relative's gossips.
But this thing has been on my mind for too long, my grades are going up and down. I decided that I would write my GRE, go to the states, join some college. But in the meantime, experiment with my passion, and then when things are right, drop out. There would be no worry about satisfying the expectations of my parents there. I would be independent!
But then, what is the practicality of all this?
Would it be too late, keeping in mind the current state of cut-throat competition?
Would it affect my career, whatever it may be, if I take a gap year or a 6 month gap to travel alone and discover myself and my passions after college?
I've asked this question to a few people, even the college counselor, but everybody says that's a crazy idea!
What should I do ?