Advice from One Transfer Student to Another
Liberty University student Rachel shares what she's learned as a transfer student.
Did you know that over one third of college students will transfer schools at some point in their college career? Transferring colleges is a big step to take because it involves lots of life changes beyond just switching schools. You're placing yourself in a new location with a different environment and culture.
That's why I'm sharing all about what it means to be a transfer student, my own experience as one, and my advice to those who are considering transferring universities or programs.
Assistance from school administrators
Liberty University does a fantastic job assisting transfer students. I know this because I myself went through the transfer application process. Applying as a college transfer is a lot like applying to colleges in high school with a few minor adjustments. The application process remains the same — you'll fill out the application, answer the essay questions, and send in your transcripts.
The biggest difference from the high school to college transition process is transferring college credits, seeing which ones will transfer over and which ones will not. These college credits include those taken at your current college and any AP or dual enrollment credits as well.
A great tool to utilize is the Liberty University transfer credit calculator. Additionally, I recommend working with an academic advisor from both schools — your current school and the one you're applying to &madsh; for a smooth application process. Working with advisors will take away the stress of trying to understand what would transfer over and what wouldn't so you can focus on your application.
Adapting to a new campus culture
For me, applying to Liberty was the easiest part of transferring. The hardest part was immersing myself into Liberty culture and getting involved. I remember transferring spring semester of my sophomore year, and while I was excited, I was also nervous because it meant a whole new environment.
When I got to campus, my biggest struggle was not knowing where certain places were or the nicknames for different things, so I felt very behind everyone else. I learned very quickly that I needed to be willing to meet those around me and get involved on campus in order to immerse myself into the culture.
I had to step out of my comfort zone but it paid off in the end. Stepping out of my comfort zone helped me find an incredible community that helped me understand everything about Liberty from nicknames to locations to how things worked. To this day, they continually encourage me and are some of my closest friends.
Advice for transfer students, from a transfer student
If you asked 100 transfer students for advice when it comes to transferring, they would all probably say something along the lines of get involved and get uncomfortable.
Placing yourself in a new environment is hard but it's even harder when it seems like everyone around you has already found their community and knows what they're doing. To get comfortable, you have to first get uncomfortable.
My advice would be to join a club on campus, whether that be an intramural sport or a Bible study, there is something for everybody. In addition to joining a club, also get involved with your hall and go to things like hall dinner and hall events.
The more you get involved on campus, the more community you're going to have and somewhere along the way, you'll find a close-knit community who will be with you through your college experience.
Being a transfer student is full of ups and downs but it definitely pays off in the end. Transferring from one school to another is a huge life change, but whatever your reason for transferring, know that Liberty University will welcome you with open arms and is excited to have you as a student!
Check out Liberty University