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Photo Illustration/The Signpost

At the beginning of the school year three types of students arrive at Weber State University: Freshmen eager to start their college career, returning students, back in a familiar place and transfer students, who fit into an entirely different mold.

It’s not that we are lost, because we’ve already done the whole college thing before. .We know how to buy our books, register for classes and (hopefully) be successful in our college classes. But now we are at a new college.

The transfer may have come out of preference, such as wanting to switch majors and pursue a new degree. The transfer may also come from necessity. A student may have run out of funds, lost housing at their last college or needed to be closer to family.

No matter what the reason, it’s important to know what you’re getting into before you decide to transfer.

  • Credits. When transferring from a different school, especially out of state, it is important to know beforehand which credits will transfer and which will not. Some websites such as collegetransfer.net will allow you to input courses from one school and show how they will transfer to a different school.Once a student’s transcripts have been processed at Weber State, the classes and how they transfer show up in Cattracks, WSU’s progress tracking system. Find it on weber.edu after logging in. Transfer students may want to make an appointment with an adviser before the semester begins.
  •  Scholarships. Scholarships are the best way to pay for an education–short of being independently wealthy. The best part about scholarships is that you don’t have to pay them back. They won’t leave you in debt, so take advantage of them.Scholarships are more abundant than most people think and the myth that scholarships are sparse is simply untrue. It’s important to speak with an adviser, the financial aid office and the college departments to see what scholarships are available, along with upcoming deadlines.
  • Housing. In addition to a new school, most transfer students also face the challenge of moving to a new area. This means finding appropriate housing that fits their needs and budget. While housing on campus may not always seem like the ideal option—especially for someone wanting independence—it can often be a good place to start.On-campus housing can provide students with contracts shorter than a year lease, as well as proximity to school. This is ideal for students who don’t own a car and need easy access to campus. Also, a shorter time commitment may be good for students if the school isn’t a good fit after they’ve transferred.
  • Campus services. Each college campus is unique, not only in its layout but also in what services are offered. Transfer students may want to familiarize themselves with various campus services as soon as possible. Most transfer students will be familiar with the basics that almost every university has to offer. Writing centers, tutoring centers and mental/physical health centers are now a staple for most campuses. However, there are unique services that are available only at specific schools.Take for example the Stress Relief Center in the Swenson Gym on the WSU main campus. The center offers massage chairs, inversion tables and chi machines to help students reduce stress and relax. The center is also equipped with comfy chairs, iPads and iPods for listening to music.

While transferring to a new school may be challenging and at sometimes feel not worth the trouble, remember that it’s your education at stake. Maybe these tips to help make the transition easier.

 

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