It's OK To Transfer Schools, Don't Let Anyone Say Otherwise

It Is 100% OK To Transfer Schools, Don't Let Anyone Tell You Otherwise

There's no shame in the school you picked not feeling like home.

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"Just give it some time", "But my (insert family member) loved it there", "Give it a chance, you'll come to love it", "Why would you want to start all over again?", "You aren't even trying to like it". These are just a few of the things that I've heard in the past few months since I decided that I wanted to transfer. When I first announced I was transferring I either heard a variation of some of the phrases above, got confusing looks, or received a disapproving stare from people who were fans of the school. Friends I had made here started to resent me because I was leaving.

At first, these things made me feel pretty upset and wonder if I was truly making the right decision in transferring. Everyone was giving me reasons to stay and saying that I truly wasn't giving this place a chance. Friends were abandoning me and leaving me. I had no idea whether to listen to my heart or to those around me. I started apologizing to people for wanting to transfer, but then I realized something:

I don't have to apologize for chasing after my happiness.

Ever since I got to my current college, I've never truly been happy. There have been moments of happiness here and there, but overall I've been miserable. Every second I'm away from this place is a good day for me. I knew since day one that this university was not my home. So to those of you who say I didn't give it a chance or that I wasn't trying to like it, I did. In fact, I gave it till winter break to get better and it never did. No, I do not have to like it just because someone in your family liked it or even if you liked it. Life is all about moving forward and facing challenges. I don't shy away from the fact that I'll have to start over again. In fact, I embrace it and welcome it as a challenge. So to anyone else who wants to transfer, this I give to you.

It is 100% OK to transfer schools. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

You don't have to apologize for transferring. You don't even have to give people a reason for you wanting to transfer. You live your life for yourself and no one else. It's not their business as to why you're doing what you want with your happiness. Your four years of college should be an enjoyable experience, not a miserable one. You should walk on campus and feel like you're finally home. But if the school you're at right now is not home, that's fine. You'll find your home one day. In addition, if you have a friend who wants to transfer, support them. Don't shut them out and distance yourself from them just because they're leaving soon. Cherish the time you have left and make the most of it. I firmly believe that everything happens for a reason and I believe that transferring schools happens for a reason.

It shows us that we deserve to always search for our happiness.

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So, You Want To Be A Nurse?

You're going to find that nursing isn't really about the medicine or the assessments. Being a nurse is so much more than anything that you can learn in school. Textbooks can't teach you compassion and no amount of lecture time will teach you what it truly means to be a nurse.

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To the college freshman who just decided on nursing,

I know why you want to be a nurse.

Nurses are important. Nursing seems fun and exciting, and you don't think you'll ever be bored. The media glorifies navy blue scrubs and stethoscopes draped around your neck, and you can't go anywhere without hearing about the guaranteed job placement. You passed AP biology and can name every single bone in the human body. Blood, urine, feces, salvia -- you can handle all of it with a straight face. So, you think that's what being a nurse is all about, right? Wrong.

You can search but you won't find the true meaning of becoming a nurse until you are in the depths of nursing school and the only thing getting you through is knowing that in a few months, you'll be able to sign the letters "BSN" after your name...

You can know every nursing intervention, but you won't find the true meaning of nursing until you sit beside an elderly patient and know that nothing in this world can save her, and all there's left for you to do is hold her hand and keep her comfortable until she dies.

You'll hear that one of our biggest jobs is being an advocate for our patients, but you won't understand until one day, in the middle of your routine physical assessment, you find the hidden, multi-colored bruises on the 3-year-old that won't even look you in the eyes. Your heart will drop to your feet and you'll swear that you will not sleep until you know that he is safe.

You'll learn that we love people when they're vulnerable, but you won't learn that until you have to give a bed bath to the middle-aged man who just had a stroke and can't bathe himself. You'll try to hide how awkward you feel because you're young enough to be his child, but as you try to make him feel as comfortable as possible, you'll learn more about dignity at that moment than some people learn in an entire lifetime.

Every class will teach you about empathy, but you won't truly feel empathy until you have to care for your first prisoner in the hospital. The guards surrounding his room will scare the life out of you, and you'll spend your day knowing that he could've raped, murdered, or hurt people. But, you'll walk into that room, put your fears aside, and remind yourself that he is a human being still, and it's your job to care, regardless of what he did.

Each nurse you meet will beam with pride when they tell you that we've won "Most Trusted Profession" for seventeen years in a row, but you won't feel that trustworthy. In fact, you're going to feel like you know nothing sometimes. But when you have to hold the sobbing, single mother who just received a positive breast cancer diagnosis, you'll feel it. Amid her sobs of wondering what she will do with her kids and how she's ever going to pay for treatment, she will look at you like you have all of the answers that she needs, and you'll learn why we've won that award so many times.

You'll read on Facebook about the nurses who forget to eat and pee during their 12-hour shifts and swear that you won't forget about those things. But one day you'll leave the hospital after an entire shift of trying to get your dying patient to eat anything and you'll realize that you haven't had food since 6:30 A.M. and you, too, will be one of those nurses who put everything else above themselves.

Too often we think of nursing as the medicine and the procedures and the IV pumps. We think of the shots and the bedpans and the baths. We think all the lab values and the blood levels that we have to memorize. We think it's all about the organs and the diseases. We think of the hospitals and the weekends and the holidays that we have to miss.

But, you're going to find that nursing isn't really about the medicine or the assessments. Being a nurse is so much more than anything that you can learn in school. Textbooks can't teach you compassion, and no amount of lecture time will teach you what it truly means to be a nurse.

So, you think you want to be a nurse?

Go for it. Study. Cry. Learn everything. Stay up late. Miss out on things. Give it absolutely everything that you have.

Because I promise you that the decision to dedicate your life to saving others is worth every sleepless night, failed test, or bad day that you're going to encounter during these next four years. Just keep holding on.

Sincerely,

The nursing student with just one year left.

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Just Because I'm Not A Good Test Taker Doesn't Mean I'm Not Smart

Grades don't equal intelligence.

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After being in college for almost a whole year, I'm starting to realize that I am not good at taking exams... at all. Sitting in a big lecture hall with 100 plus students taking an exam stresses me out more than the exam itself. I get so nervous... so anxious that it affects the way I take my exams. I get so nervous that sometimes I freak out just reading the first question, even if I know how to do it and I have to make myself calm down before I can actually start the exam.

I put a lot of pressure on myself to do well in school, as most students do. I want to prove myself to my family that they're spending all this money for me to go to a great school for a reason. All that pressure can become overwhelming, though.

Just because I'm not good at taking exams doesn't mean I'm not smart. It's such an important idea to remember. Your grades don't define who you are as a person. Bad grades don't mean you're stupid. I don't do the best on some of my exams, but I know I'm smart. I know I know what I'm talking about. I study my ass off, and sometimes my grades don't reflect that, which can be so frustrating. It doesn't mean that I give up or stop putting in all the effort I can.

Just because you might not be good at taking exams doesn't mean you're not smart. I know it might be hard to think that way, but grades don't reflect your intelligence level. You know what you know. You know how much effort you put in. You know what grades you deserve and should be getting.

Don't let your exam grades determine who you are.

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