It’s incredibly common for students switch schools after they enter college, so if you are one such student, fear not. Maybe you took the risk to move far from home and discovered it just wasn’t right for you. Maybe you planned to save money by attending a community college first and then moving to a four-year institution. Whatever the reason, transferring colleges is common, but an often complicated process. Here are a few easy ways to make it easier on yourself right out of the gate.
Look Up Scholarships
Believe it or not, there are actually scholarships aimed specifically at transfer students. Many of these are directed at those moving from a community college to a more traditional university, but there are also funds available to students looking at moving from one similar institution to another. If you know you can’t afford to pay much more than you currently are, this should be a necessary part of your research process when looking at where to switch.
Live On Campus
If you’re already going to be abandoning what little stability you have at your current school, adding on the search for an independent living situation off-campus of your new school is a lot to ask of yourself. Odds are you’re already going to be navigating new friends, new classes and new challenges. Trying to find the right apartment and making the money to afford in addition to all that is kind of a tall order. Be nice to yourself and make the transition as easy as possible. Plus, staying on campus for at least a little bit will help you make friends faster.
Do Your Research
Don’t transfer to a new institution for superficial reasons. Just because it’s closer to home or your best friend happens to be there doesn’t mean it’ll be any better an experience for you than the school you attend now. Before pulling the trigger, make sure you can afford it and that there are the social and academic opportunities you want. If you’re a finance major and know you plan on some online post-graduate work, learn more about their online masters in accounting. Transfer students can get so wrapped up in wanting to change their situation that they sometimes make the mistake of picking a new school for the wrong reasons. Learning as much as you can about different places will help you avoid this misstep.
Remember It’ll Take Awhile
Once you decide you want to switch schools, count on needing at least a semester to find the right new school and apply to it. You may not get into your first choice, so you’ll need backups. That means more applications, campus visits, and even interviews if they’re required. If you leave it till the last minute, you run the risk of spending a semester without anywhere to be. If you were so sure about getting into Adelphi University that you didn’t apply anywhere else or sign up for classes at your current institution, you’ll be in for a rude awakening if they don’t accept you. Give yourself the time to go through the process the right way.