Transfer Student Advice: 7 Ways to Begin Again

Classrooms Team

Dec 18, 2020

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You’ve been accepted to your transfer school, and the start of a new semester is approaching. This is a fresh start for you and a second chance at the college experience. People choose to transfer for a wide variety of reasons, but one thing is the same — you hope to be successful and make the most of your time.

Keep reading to discover seven ways you can begin again and enjoy the benefits of a new school.

1. Get Involved

The best way to become integrated into the community is through participation. Join clubs and sports which interest you and take part in on-campus events. Choose activities that ignite your passion so that you meet likeminded people to befriend. Sporting events can be another way to show school spirit.

Depending on your university, you may also be able to join a sorority or fraternity. These societies may provide a closer-knit community when living on campus. Keep in mind that you’ll still need to balance your academics with your social life.

2. Schedule Meetings With Your Professors

With a new school comes new professors and teaching assistants. Take the time to introduce yourself, especially in the classes that directly relate to your major. Office hours are also a terrific opportunity to demonstrate your interest and learn more about the covered topics. Forming a professional relationship is beneficial, as you may need your professors to provide recommendations for internships, scholarships, and future jobs.

If you have the opportunity, meet with the head of your degree program. While they may not have a lot of time to share, it’s a connection that could come in handy as you progress.

3. Meet With an Academic Advisor

Schedule a meeting with your academic advisor to discuss your academic plan. They’ll be able to discuss which of your courses transferred and what you’ll need to do to stay on track. While it’s essential to always hope for the best, keep in mind that professionals make mistakes. Do your research before your meetings to ensure your adequately prepared and know what you’d like to cover during the time. If you leave it up to your advisor, they may forget to answer crucial questions or may omit parts of the scheduling routine they assume you’re already familiar with.

Every teacher is different, so consider using Rate My Professor to find the one which suits your learning style. With the information you learn, you’ll be able to request that your advisor place you with specific teachers rather than random placement.

4. Consider Living On Campus

This is your second chance, and it’s an opportunity to do things differently and experience anything you missed at your previous university. For some students that may be living on campus. If you’ve lived on campus before, you know it’s an opportunity to meet new people and experience new things. 

Anyone could tell you how commuting may save you money but will it provide the quintessential college experience? Then again, perhaps your focus is purely on academics and bolstering your resume. If this is the case living off-campus may allow you to strengthen your study habits without allowing the campus social scene to distract you. You should take all transfer student advice into consideration, but in the end, you must choose what’s best for your academic and professional future.

5. Begin Networking

Networking helps you to find opportunities that might not have presented themselves on your own. Take advantage of your new alumni network and begin connecting. The world works in mysterious ways, so even connections outside of your industry may benefit in the long run. Remember to act professionally as these people could be a part of your future career development. At a minimum, networking helps expose you to new people, ideas, and industries, giving your academic experience a real-world twist. 

Maintaining a professional social media profile on LinkedIn is a simple way to keep track of the new connections you form. It also provides a platform for keeping in touch without seeming uncomfortable or awkward.

6. Find an On-Campus Job

Work-study jobs are a terrific way to familiarize yourself with the campus while making some extra cash. Typically they are low stress and give you a chance to gain work experience while completing your academic studies. Most students also find that it encourages them to build good time management skills. While an on-campus job isn’t pivotal to your success as a transfer student, you will find that it provides you with ample experience to include on your resume.

7. Make an Academic Plan

New school, new plan, new opportunities, where do you begin?

Remember to make an academic plan, so you stay on track as a transfer student. In a new environment, it’s easy to get distracted and fall behind. Following a plan will help to keep you on track academically and professionally. Try to find a healthy balance to avoid burnout. You’ll need to stay healthy to maintain a strong academic performance.

The Bottom Line

Transferring to a new school is a major change, but the tricky part is over. Enjoy a smooth transition by implementing these seven ways to get started at a new school. Transfer student advice is probably coming at you from all directions, so you must stay true to yourself. Keep an eye on the prize, and you’ll have a diploma in hand before you know it.

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