The freshman experience, while fun and exciting, is also extremely confusing and difficult. There is plenty of adjusting to be done. Transfer students have to make many of those adjustments again: make new friends, learn to navigate new campus and adjust to a new city – who wants to do all that over again? The thousands of transfer students at MSU this fall did. Although it’s not quite the same, most transfers have had to deal with that one quirky professor who grades too hard, or even the non-stop dorm life.
At the same time transfers are getting lost on campus, they’re trying to hide their maps because they don’t want anyone to think they’re freshmen. They’re still searching for clubs to join, new friends to make and parties to attend.
Reasons for transferring span far and wide. Money is often an issue and community colleges serve as a viable alternative to four-year universities. Not all schools are for everyone: some students love their small colleges where everyone knows everyone else, while others bask in the glory of being anonymous.
The process of transferring is far stricter than most may understand. MSU requires both a math class and an English class prior to transferring, as well as a minimum 3.0 grade point average.
It’s not an easy process, but according to junior transfer student, Bryana Clover, it was well worth the trouble. Her MSU experience is going very well so far. “My favorite new thing is the size; very diverse and a lot of people. It also helps people to network. You have more choices at a larger school,” says Clover. She transferred to MSU from Adrian College because of certain opportunities offered here, especially the study abroad program. Also, the cost of her tuition has been cut in half.
There are many advantages to transferring. Students get a clean slate both socially and academically, since only credits transfer, not grades. They already understand most of the rules, how college classes operate and, in some cases, dorm life. However, a lot is also given up. Old friends, organizations and familiarity are sacrificed.
On the whole, MSU is friendly to its transfer students. A newsletter specifically designed for transfers is sent out after admittance and it includes information that may not apply to freshmen, such as parking registration and the option to live off campus. There are also separate orientations and transfer advising sessions.
MSU is ready to help transfer students academically, but their social life must also be considered. “Overall, most students are friendly, but they already have their groups. Freshmen are all usually friendly because everything is new,” said junior Leticia Rodriguez, who transferred last year.
Some transfers may have a tougher time fitting in then others, which is why McDonel Hall is generally designated the transfer dorm. Many international students also live there.
Transfer students need specific attention, too. It has been reported grade point averages can drop an entire point when coming to a new school, said journalism adviser Nancy Ehret. That is more likely for students transferring from a community college, but has been prevalent in all cases.
Whatever the reason may be, over 2,000 students transfer to MSU each fall, so it must be working for some of them. We’re all Spartans now.

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