Transfer Experience

I remember sitting in chemistry lecture, confused out of my mind and unable to pay attention.

The words of the lecturer would fall on deaf ears, as concepts such as Pauli’s exclusion principle and torsional strain were explained, the material getting harder as the weeks went on.

Often, as transfer students we find ourselves lost in the middle of our college careers due to circumstances beyond our control. Thoughts like, “Did I choose the right major? Did I choose the right college?” or simple questions like, “Where is my advisor’s office located? Isn’t it too late for me to be questioning taking this class now?” can haunt our minds.

I’m glad to say, I’m not in that dark place anymore, or else I wouldn’t be writing this. My name is Rabia Haider and I am a junior majoring in Nutritional Science. I transferred in Fall of 2018 from community college and my transfer process was as most transfer students would describe it; confusing. I was registered for classes, but coming from a small community college, I had difficulty locating the UCAPS office to make my I.D. Little did I know that I needed to cross the bridge to actually find the big glass building that all the orientation leaders were talking about.

The campus can seem big and scary at first, especially when you go from a small college to a big public university. Being a transfer makes it worse because most students are already acclimated to the environment, and one can feel intimidated asking questions that most people already know the answer to. There are many differences when it comes to my previous college and being in university now, but for me, the biggest changes were navigating campus, feeling connected to the new place that was basically a second home, and keeping up with my classes.

I came to know that almost 50% of the student body is made up of transfer students, and often it can be challenging integrating into the environment but know that you’re not alone. By talking to other people and exploring my major, I met a solid group of friends that also went through the transfer process and we’re able to share that experience and how we grew from it.

As for any tips I might have for other incoming or current transfers, I’d say that no question is a bad question. You are your own biggest advocate and it might be intimidating at first to seek out help, but if you’re curious about something, ask the questions and you will find people with the answers. Second, I really do encourage connecting with the campus. I know that often transfer students are busy juggling two jobs, a family, or other commitments, but the connection to campus makes the college experience that much better. Don’t be afraid to go out, join a club, ask about any internship opportunities, or volunteer in the community. I promise you won’t regret it.

  • Is there any resource on-campus that you’d advocate for?
  • What advice do you have for incoming transfer students?

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