According to a 2010 report by the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NCAC), about one third of college students transfer to another school, including those who start at a community college.
South Puget Sound Community College has online resources to help students with this process, and they also recently had a seminar on the topic. SPSCC Educational Planner Susan Morreira and The Evergreen State College Coordinator for Community College Relations Jerad Sorber gave a presentation for students interested in transferring to another college.
The main takeaways from their presentation were:
- Apply early, and apply to more than one school. Try to narrow your search if you are looking at more than three schools.
- Be “major ready.” You are better off if you know in advance what major you want to pursue. Also, be aware that some majors are more competitive than others. For example, computer science and business administration are competitive majors, while biology and English are not as competitive.
- GPA. Make sure your grades are good. Most colleges will not accept grades below a C.
- FAFSA recommended. Just to be safe, always fill out the FAFSA at the beginning of the year. Each college may have different deadlines.
- Prepare for “transfer shock.” Your grades may dip while you are adjusting to your new campus.
- Prepare for culture shock. Visit your new campus if you can. Do you have a personal connection to the school? What does the school feel like? Morreira and Sorber suggested joining clubs and activities, and using counseling resources on campus as needed.
- Personal statement. As part of your transfer application to another college, you will need to write a personal statement. Use this as a chance to introduce yourself. Mention overcoming challenges and hardships, and focus on your strengths. Try to avoid too many clichés. Sorber said he is personally setting tired of seeing the same quote from Gandhi over and over again, “You must be the change you want to see in the world.”
- Scholarships. Look at national databases, such as washboard.org.
NCAC Special Report on the Transfer Admission Process: http://ow.ly/livkJ
SPSCC page for transfer students: http://spscc.ctc.edu/current-students/services/transfer