Being a transfer student myself, I feel like the best advice for anyone who is even considering leaving their school would be from students who have gone through the process.
I started considering that I needed to switch my school in March of 2018. The college I was looking at, Rowan University, was only accepting applications until April 1st, which meant I had to make my final decision pretty quickly.
I ended up deciding to leave because I knew there were bigger and more suitable opportunities at Rowan that are much more beneficial to me personally.
The only reason I even thought that transferring was an option was because my friend at my previous college actually told me she was transferring. Now being September of 2018, I was able to ask her about her decision and pull some advice out of answers from the transfer student who inspired me to branch out to new possibilities.
What were the major factors that made you realize you needed to transfer?
"Definitely one, of if not the biggest factor for my decision to transfer, was the fact that I wanted to have more on-campus activities and events so that I had a reason to stay on campus. At my previous university, I didn't feel that there was enough happening, and in high school, I was pretty involved. So, to have nothing to do was very different for me."
Transferring may be a good idea for you if you don't feel like you are getting the college experience. This could be for multiple reasons, including a lack of activities and variety on campus.
Did you have any doubts in leaving?
"Honestly, I didn't have any doubts in leaving because even though I love my friends there, I felt that for my personal benefit and happiness that transferring was the best option because I didn't feel like the school was the right fit for me personally."
When thinking of transferring, it is important to recognize the pros, but also the cons. You don't want to regret your decision.
How did you decide which school you would be transferring to?
"The decision of where to transfer to wasn't difficult because I knew that I didn't want to go out of state, and I was originally a nursing major and my new school has an awesome nursing program. I applied there and was eventually accepted.
Then, I realized I didn't want to be a nurse anymore and I knew that psychology was the major for me. Luckily, my school has an awesome psych program as well.
All in all, my decision was based on the fact that my new college is an awesome school, in state, and it's bigger than my previous school. It also has more activities and clubs, but it is still on the smaller side, so I am still comfortable getting around."
One of the most important things to think about when you decide you are transferring is knowing what you want. If you know the things you didn't like at your original school, then that should help you pick a university that has exactly what you want.
How are you feeling entering your first semester compared to how you felt at your previous school?
"Entering my first semester at my new college was actually more nerve-racking for me than last year because, last year, I went to school with people who I went to high school with. I was comfortable because it felt familiar, but this year, I don't really know anyone.
I'm very nervous but excited for the year to start because I have big plans, like joining a sorority. So, I almost feel like I hit a reset button and I am getting the freshman experience this year."
It is okay to be out of your comfort zone, and it's never too late to start that freshman experience that you were deprived of.
What is your advice for someone who is on the fence about transferring?
"My advice to someone who is considering transferring is to think about why you want to transfer. If there are enough reasons and you don't feel 100% happy where you are, then I say do it. You only go to college once, and these are the years where you're supposed to live and enjoy life.
If you don't feel happy, then make the change and look into places that fit your comfort as far as size and program for your major."
The most important thing in attending a university is your happiness and well-being. You are paying not only for an education but for an experience. With that being said, if you are not 100% happy where you are, find a place that allows you to be.