It is estimated that about 30% of college students will decide to transfer to a different school at some point in their college careers. Too often students switch schools for the wrong reasons and find that the grass is not always greener after the move. Here are a few situations in which a college transfer makes sense.
Some students simply feel that they can’t afford to stay at their current college. If you’re feeling money pressures, be sure to talk to a financial aid officer or your family before deciding on making a transfer. The long-term rewards of a quality degree might outweigh short-term financial inconvenience. Also, realize that a transfer to a less expensive school may not actually save you money in the long run.
If you are not feeling challenged enough at your current school, or you have you earned such high grades that you think you can win admission to a significantly better school, than transfer might be a good idea. A more prestigious college may be able to offer better educational and career opportunities. Remember, however, that being the star of the class at lower-ranked school can also have its own rewards.
If you discover in your first few years of college that you want to be a zoologist, you might want to transfer to a school that specializes in animals. Similarly, if nothing will suit you but a career as an astrologist, you should transfer to one of the few schools in the country that offers such specialized training.
In some cases, family has to take priority over school. If you need to be close to home because of a sick family member, transferring to a different school closer to home might make sense. Try to talk to your Dean first–a leave of absence is sometimes a much better solution.
Sometimes the culture at a college turns out to be the opposite of what you wanted. Maybe the seven-day-a-week party scene isn’t for you, or perhaps the opposite is true and you’d like a more active social life. College isn’t just about the academics, so in some cases like these, a transfer might make sense. Don’t jump too quickly though–make sure that the social group that you’re looking for doesn’t exist at your current school and try a change of friends first before a change of school.