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semesters, classes, and exams, that dream turns into a nightmare. Uni- versities across the country offer a variety of majors and minors; some offer more programs than others, while some offer fewer but more highly ranked programs than others. If you’re convinced you want to continue with the same degree plan you’ve been pursuing, then your brainstorming phase is done. If you’re still undecided, create a list of possi- ble options and interests. You can narrow down your possible majors later as you move along the transfer process. Typically, the larger the uni- versity, the larger the pool of options. Doing adequate research to dis- cover the best program for you is crucial. When you’re investing mon- ey in a college, you want to make sure you’re receiving the best educa- tion you can get. Once you’ve found several universities that offer your program of interest, the next step is to review the social and financial elements of each school.


At what cost?


The price tags for universities vary. While some are relatively inexpen- sive, others may have a higher tuition rate. Private universities typically have higher “sticker prices,” while public universities maintain a rela- tively low tuition rate. But depend- ing on the financial aid package you’re offered, it may be more af- fordable for you to attend the more expensive university. Again, it’s im- portant to do your research to find the best fit for you. Universities do as much as they can to keep the price of attendance low. Although scholarships are more abundant for


first-time students,


they’re still available for transfer stu- dents. Along with scholarships and financial aid, schools try to find ways to manage the cost by implement- ing policies and services that keep tuition rates from changing or rising exponentially. If you qualify, grants are a great addition to your finan- cial aid package too. Find out which universities are being proactive in


offering the most support to transfer students.


While you’re considering fees and more, you should also think about what the city and campus have to offer in order to earn money. For those who will work while attend- ing school, research what kind of employment or internship opportu- nities are available on and off cam- pus. Finding jobs that offer flexible work schedules and wages that will sustain your budget is essential.


Admission requirements Now that you’ve found universities of interest, you can start looking at admission requirements. Before you even submit an application or con- sider sending in any documents, check to see if you meet the require- ments for your program of interest and the university as a whole. These findings will create the blueprints for what steps to take next. If you don’t meet all the requirements, it’s worth speaking to an admission counselor at the school. A more in-depth review will inform you about all the options you have and what else can possibly be offered to you for admittance. If all goes well and you’re ready to continue the path to transferring, it’s time to begin your transfer credit re- search process.


Transferring credits Perhaps the most pressing of all ques- tions transfer students ask is: If I transfer, will I extend my time in school? Sometimes the credit trans- fer process can bring frus- trating obstacles when it comes to apply- ing your accom- plished work to your new degree program.


transfer.collegexpress.com n 2021 6


Transferring credits isn’t the same for every university. Each school accepts credits depending on how those credits correlate with their cur- riculum. A great free service you can use is Transferology. This website al- lows you to plug in credits from your current university to the one you’re planning on transferring to. It’ll then show you which credits won’t trans- fer and which ones will and how. Transferology isn’t used by every university. If utilizing this program is out of the question, contact an ad- mission counselor at the universities you’re considering. They’ll be able to connect you with resources to fig- ure out which credits can be brought with you and what you can do to re- cuperate any credits that may be lost. Degree maps to graduation are extremely beneficial, so ask if one is available. Some universities also of- fer pre-transfer advising sessions to guide you through every step of the transfer process. They give you the resources and information you need regarding transferring credits, ex- ploring majors, identifying next steps, and more.


Campus visits


While you may be picking a uni- versity based on proximity to your job or home, visiting campuses on your col- lege list is still extremely important. Every campus has a different environ- ment made up of the school’s student population, the city


it’s located in, and the vast op- tions of programs and organiza- tions at the school. Visiting cam- pus will give you a good feel of what it would be like as a stu- dent on a day-to-day basis. Many universities


offer


guided tour sessions with infor- mational presentations and even special transfer events to help you during this process. The presenta- tions highlight what the university has to offer, the requirements to be admitted, the student organi- zations at the school, and more.


@CollegeXpress


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