Or maybe you’re just unhappy at your current college. You may wonder what the best colleges to transfer to are.
According to the National Student Clearinghouse Research Center in the 2020-21 school year, around 2.1 million students moved from one college to another.
Read on for some options as well as tips on how to transfer without a hitch.
How to Decide Where to Transfer
Before you start applying to a new college, you should consider how to choose the best colleges to transfer to. That way, you can make sure you’ll choose a college that meets your needs.
Not every school is for every student, and that’s okay. Here are some things to keep in mind if you want to transfer schools.
Tip 1: Determine If Transferring Is Right
First, you’ll want to figure out if transferring to a new college is even the right choice for you. For example, many students need to transfer at some point if they start at a community college.
However, maybe you’re currently at a four-year school. You might not be happy with the school or some other part of student life. In some cases, you may just not like being in school right now, so transferring won’t help.
Tip 2: Consider When to Transfer
Once you decide that transferring is a good option, you should think about when to do so. You can transfer after each year or even after a semester, depending on the school you want to go to.
No time is right for everyone, so consider your situation. Luckily, you should be able to make friends no matter when you transfer because you almost always won’t be the only transfer student. Think about what makes sense for you, your degree, and your life.
Tip 3: Organize Everything
Transferring can be stressful because you have to go through the college application process all over again. That means you need to organize all of your applications and supplemental materials.
Pay attention to any deadlines, especially transfer-specific ones which may be different from freshman deadlines. You should also look for any transfer agreements between your current school and prospective schools. That way, you’ll know if you need to retake any classes.
Tip 4: Prepare Financially
Of course, transferring to a new school comes with some financial stress. You’ll need to submit a financial aid application to the new school.
You should also consider other costs, such as the cost of living. Then, you can make sure you can afford to go to the new school. If not, you can ask for more financial aid, or you can decide on a different transfer school.
Best Colleges to Transfer To
Now that you know a bit about what goes into transferring, you should consider some of the best colleges for transfer students. That way, you can add some of these schools to your list of where to apply.
Of course, there are hundreds of excellent schools out there. Be sure to consider at least a few to make sure you enroll at the best university for you.
Here are some of the best universities you may want to attend, in no particular order.
1. American University
American University is in Washington DC, and it’s an excellent choice. The school has a program that will match you with a current student when you first arrive. That way, you can make a friend right away.
After orientation, you can attend weekly meetings to learn more about the school and how to succeed as a transfer student. If you have good grades, you can even join a society specifically for transfers.
This private university offers degrees in business, communication, and other areas. It’s the perfect school for anyone wanting to live and work in the nation’s capital.
2. Clemson University
If you want to live on campus, consider transferring to Clemson University. The school has a dorm for transfer students, so you can meet other new people in your situation.
You can also access a web portal during your transfer to get more support. Another excellent benefit is that transfer students have their own voice. There’s a sub-council for transfer students within the larger student council.
This public research institution is great for many students. Whether you like sports or simply want better weather, you can apply.
New York University (NYU) is one of the best colleges for transfers. You can get a lot of support on campus to help adjust to the school and the big city.
If you’re on Facebook, you’ll be able to join a transfer student Facebook group. Another way to get involved is with the transfer student association, whether or not you use Facebook.
NYU has a dedicated weekly newsletter for transfer students. Finally, you can request a mentor through the school to help you succeed.
4. Portland State University
From before you apply, Portland State University has some great resources. You can log into an online portal just for transfer students, and it’s free to use.
The portal gives you more details on how to apply and enroll in classes. It even connects you with admissions counselors to help you with your application.
Also, you can make sure your current credits will transfer with the uSelect program. That way, you’ll know if you’ll need to take some classes again or if everything will transfer over smoothly. It’s a great tool if you’re transferring a little later and don’t want to take much longer to graduate.
5. Saint Louis University
In the heart of the midwest, you’ll find Saint Louis University. When you first arrive on campus, you can go to TRANSFERmation. That’s a special orientation for transfer students, and former transfers run the event.
They’ll know what you’re going through, so you can get all of your questions answered. During your first semester, you can take an entire class to help you acclimate to life at the university.
The private university is in Midtown in St. Louis. You can also spend a semester abroad studying at the school’s campus in Madrid, Spain.
6. University at Buffalo
The University at Buffalo is a great option for New Yorkers and other transfers. You can participate in their Educational Opportunity Program. The program can help support and comfort you during your transfer.
On campus, you’ll also be able to join an honor society just for transfer students. That can be a great way to meet other people who are new to the school.
Peer mentoring is another available service. You can meet existing students and get help finding your way around campus and the city.
Another big school that you can transfer to is the University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA). At orientation, you’ll get to meet and volunteer with other transfers and freshmen. You can then maintain the friendships you make during that time.
The Bruin Transfer Camp will be available after you first enroll at the school. There, you can get more assistance regarding the university.
You can also get help from the people you meet at the camp and orientation. That can be particularly useful when moving to one of the largest cities in the country.
8. University of Michigan
If you’d prefer to attend school in a smaller city, consider the University of Michigan. The school can give you individualized support to help answer your questions. That way, you can relieve any stress you have about switching schools.
Transfer Connections is a special program that will pair you with a current student. The student can teach you about the university and its various programs and resources. Current students in this program go through training to give you even more help.
You can also follow the transfer student office. They publish a newsletter each month so that you can stay on top of new things happening on campus.
9. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is another excellent school. For one, you can use their online portal to learn if they’ll accept all of your credits. Then, you won’t have to waste time taking classes a second time just to graduate.
If everything will transfer, you can participate in C-STEP (Carolina Student Transfer Excellence Program). This program helps you transfer from a two-year school without a ton of added stress.
Transfers who qualify for C-STEP can even get more financial assistance. The help may be enough to help you graduate without any loans. At the very least, it can minimize the debt you’ll take on.
10. The University of Utah
At The University of Utah, you can attend meetings each week. The meetings will cover scholarships, campus resources, and more. That way, you can stay up to date and make the most of your time in college.
Also every week, you can participate in Transfer Tuesdays. Take some merch from your old school to the bookstore to get University of Utah gear. Then, you can wear your new stuff and show off school pride.
This university is a big school, and it’s in Salt Lake City. Degrees include business, history, music, and more. You’ll have plenty of things to do both on campus and around town.