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Stomping the Yard

Deciding to Transfer to Another College

Our college blogger talks to former and current college students to find out why they decided to transfer to another campus.
Credit: Thinkstock

Calling all college students!  Our new weekly column, Stomping the Yard, aims to help undergrads excel in their studies and social lives.  JETmag.com’s team of experts will show you how to get it done from the day you move into the dorms to the minute you step off campus for that first job. Submit questions and feedback for The Yard via talkback@jetmag.com.

When your campus isn’t a good fit, sometimes you have to pursue your degree elsewhere. There are a ton of reasons students decide to transfer, so I talked to a few college graduates who’ve stomped more than one yard.

Wanting more face-to-face interaction with professors and classmates caused Brandi Fowler Davis to transfer from her online university to a traditional college program.  Meanwhile, lack of focus, mental maturity, and rising tuition costs caused Jennifer Nicole King to return to her a college in her hometown.  And, it’s obviously paid off.

King is currently pursuing a Ph.D. and has both bachelor’s and master’s degrees under her belt.  Among other reasons, Tonesia Rouse said she was pleased she transferred to a new school, because the increased outlets for spiritual support and fellowship made her a more successful student.

As we near the end of another school year, you may be pondering if staying at your current school is the best decision. Here are a few reasons why other students decided to transfer to new colleges and universities:

To pursue your dream:  Olalekan Esho, a current player with the International Federation of Basketball, said his dream was to have a successful college basketball career.  He said he made the decision to transfer colleges six times because he knew he wasn’t getting the amount of playing minutes he deserved on those schools’ teams.  “I benefitted from these experiences by getting more and more [playing] minutes each time I transferred.”

Likewise, Nina Jackson decided to transfer from her school in downstate Illinois to a university outside of Los Angeles to experience more acting opportunities in the “real world” entertainment capital.  She felt this risk was worthwhile because it would provide her with better career opportunities.

To protect your future: With an accredited institution, a student has some assurance of receiving a quality education and gaining recognition by other colleges and by employers of the course credits and degrees earned.  Quannella Cloud said it was too much of a risk to her future career to stay at the university she started with because the nursing program was under investigation and was close to losing its accreditation.  She then transferred to another university in North Carolina with an established and accredited nursing program, ensuring that employers would respect her degree.

To move closer to home: Sadia Mathis said she preferred returning to her hometown Chicago, after attending a university in Florida.  “I wasn’t happy in the South, and missed the diverse environment of an urban city.”

Similarly, Billye Waters shared while attending school on the East Coast, “I’d never spent a substantial amount of time away from my family, and the [sudden] death of my father was more traumatic than I was equipped to deal with.” Although there were professors and friends who encouraged Waters to get counseling, he didn’t.  Consequently, his grades dropped, and he returned home, because he felt like he was failing himself and his family.  The move allowed him to be closer to family, and enroll at a school where he could further develop a growing passion in film making.

YOUR TURN: Have you transferred schools? What was your experience like? Share your story in the comments!

About Kelly Fair

Kelly Fair

Kelly Fair is the founder of the highly successful Polished Pebbles Girls Mentoring Program that has served more than 600 girls 7-17 years old to be effective communicators, and career and community conscious leaders! This work has been supported by a network of 300+ volunteers from the Chicagoland community and area businesses such as Bloomingdale’s, Microsoft, ThoughtWorks and many more. You can follow Kelly on her blogand on Twitter at @KFairtheMentor.