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What is it like to transfer to a school out of state?

I went to Middlesex Community College in New Jersey for my first two years of college and I will be transferring out of state to St. John's University in the fall. I've lived at home my whole life and this will be my first time away from my family and I am curious to know how it will be. #college-transfer #college #college-advice

So I was born and raised in Houston my entire life and then decided to go to university in California for some reason. I'm a junior now and I like to think I've transitioned, but it is definitely an experience. First off, culture is different from state to state in the United States, obviously. People will eat different food and listen to different music, but it won't be entirely foreign. Living on your own is also pretty wild, I'll be honest. Set a budget for how much you need to eat with every paycheck you get and look for deals. Best of luck with your transition! Ethan G.

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Kimberly’s Answer

There are a few things to consider if you are thinking about transfering.

  1. If you are attending a State university and considering transferring to an out-of-state State university, you probably won’t get in-state tuition if you don’t live there. That could make a big different financially. Some State universites offer reciprocal tuition rates to bordering states, so that would be a good thing to look into.
  2. Are your current tuition credits transferrable to the new college/university? You can find this out by looking at the university website or give the admissions department a call. This is something you want to carefully investigate becaue you don’t want to lose credits if you can avoid it.
  3. From a social standpoint, as you know, you’ll most likely be starting over again. This can be exciting but somewhat intimidating. There are usually sessions that help students acclimate to the new enviroment and meet other transfers, so you can ask the admissions people about how they ease the transition for transfer students.

I transfered my sophmore year because the new university had a more highly rated program that I was interested in. And honestly, I wanted to be closer to home. 2 hours from home rather than 7 hours made me feel more comfortable. But that’s just me. Some people don’t have an issue with that.

Kimberly recommends the following next steps:

google: "reciprocal tuition state universities"

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Jacob’s Answer

This is a great question, and good to know that you are thinking through this before you transfer. While I did not specifically transfer schools in my college journey, I have been a native Texan all my life and grew up in a small town in Texas before going to college in the neighboring state of Louisiana. When I went to school for my undergraduate degree at Louisiana Tech University (go Bulldogs!), I had the opportunity to work as an athletic trainer/field equipment manager for the football team. It was a terrific experience and allowed me to plug in socially and make friends quickly. While in this role, I met a lot of football players who were JuCo transfers (Junior College transfers), and what I observed with the more successful people that transitioned was how quick they recognized the social norms and made friends among the team. The folks that did not transition well were often times observed isolated and non-interactive with their teammates.

So, I guess my advice would be to figure out your social network quickly and work towards building relationships with the folks around you. Similar to Kimberly's advice above, I would encourage you to get involved and meet people. As you know from already being in college, there are tons of social activities that college life provides and interacting with these different groups and within these different activities will allow you to plug in and avoid isolation and potentially focusing too heavily on your prior school and "the way things used to be." One other point of advice is while you need to recognize the cultural and social differences of your new school to help efficiently adapt in making friends and meeting new people, be true to your authentic self throughout the process, and folks will respect that sincerity. Good luck on the transition!