You’ve made a decision. You’re sick of the dorms, of your professors, and the monotonous reality of your college life. You feel like you don’t belong there anymore and it’s time to move on.
Is it as easy and simple as just packing up your things and heading to a new school? What does the process entail? These are questions that every college transfer student asks themselves, but the answer can be complicated and vary depending on the situation.
Before you make a hasty decision, consider all of your options.
1. Decide which college you want to transfer to.
Once you have identified a potential new school, you will need to assess the chance of your application being successful. Campusreel.org publishes information on entry requirements and the entry process for many colleges and universities.
2. Would a break help?
Talk to your professor about whether you should apply for a leave of absence. If you are on academic probation, this might be a good option. If you have missed deadlines for submitting assignments and exams, you may want to consider a break. Talk to your professors about this and get their advice about applying for a leave of absence.
3. Are you eligible for financial aid?
If you are already receiving financial aid from your current college, then transferring could mean that your financial aid is no longer available to help pay for school and tuition fees. Speak with the financial aid offices of your current college and the university you wish to transfer to determine whether or not they will still be able to provide student loans if they accept you as an incoming student next year.
4. How long will the transfer take?
Find out how much time is needed before you can get your student status at the new school (usually it’s up to one semester). Technically, your last semester at the current university should be considered a summer semester, but most colleges disregard this rule.
5. What is the transfer credit process?
If you are transferring to a university within a state, the process of transferring credit should be simpler. In most cases, you’ll need a transcript from your current college, which must be verified and reviewed by your new university. There is an expectation that everything will transfer over, but this isn’t always the case. The office of admissions at your new college can provide more details on how to proceed with this.
6. Can your professors provide you with a letter of reference?
Before you leave your current college, it’s important to check in with your professors. They may be able to provide you with a reference for the new school if you still have not been provided with one.
It can be scary to think about leaving one college for another. If you feel that it’s the right decision for you, there is no wrong answer to whether or not you should transfer. You just need to decide what is best for you.