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Oct 18 2017
by Florence O'Connor

Why I am Considering Transferring Colleges

By Florence O'Connor - Oct 18 2017
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I currently attend an incredible school that has my dream program. I cried tears of happiness when I was accepted and couldn't have been more excited to tell people where I was planning on spending the next four years. However, I am seriously considering transferring.

 I'm not miserable, I don't hate this school and I am not just homesick. However, I cannot shake the feeling that this school simply is not right for me. The school offers a lot of what I wanted such as the perfect program that has given me the freedom to study my specific area of interest, and many opportunities to get a head start on my career.  Yet I am still left with the feeling that I am missing out on something, something I thought I didn't need: the typical college experience. 

When I was applying to colleges, I think I was too hard on myself. The entire process greatly overwhelmed me so I basically decided that I would go to one of two schools to narrow down the application process. One school represented the ultimate college experience: football games, tailgating and frat parties galore. The other offered no football games or tailgating but offered the perfect setting for me to build a future in my area of interest. After getting rejected from the first option, I didn't even think twice before clicking "will attend" on the school that offered a lack of the typical college experience but a promising-looking career. 

When I think about transferring I am both comforted and terrified by the idea. Firstly, I am terrified. I am terrified of having to explain to people why I want to move schools. I am terrified of feeling like I have let my parents down. I am terrified of other people's judgement. I am terrified of looking like a failure. I am terrified of feeling like I have failed myself. And I am terrified of making a mistake. 

However, I also feel eased by the idea. I feel comforted by the idea of transferring as it makes me feel like I don't simply have to make do with the situation at hand. A situation that may not be fully satisfying to me. I will go into my next school with nothing negative to say about my previous school, other than that it simply didn't work for me. I have made some great friends, had some incredible experiences and made some serious connections regarding my career. I won't look at this year as a misery or lost time. Rather, I will think of it as a time I took for myself, a time of experimentation and a time that I definitely learnt a lot about who I am as a person.

Whenever I think about transferring, I am filled with anxiety and confusion over what is the right thing to do, but it is a subject I have to face. Before I make any decision, I must be sure to give my entire effort towards making this school work as there is obviously a reason I was so drawn to it. If I don't, I will forever live in regret and that is something I refuse to do. I must have all the facts straight in my mind before I even open the transfer application. 

Although there are many people I should consult before making this decision (i.e. my parents), I need to ensure that I am the one calling the final shot. If I do decide to transfer, I have to make sure I am doing it for myself. If I decide to stay, I have to make sure I am doing it for myself. I need to think about what will genuinely make me feel happy, comfortable and fulfilled in the next few years. I need to teach myself to not be afraid of feeling like a failure and not to be afraid of admitting that I may have made a mistake. Actually, I wouldn't think of it as a mistake. Rather I will think of it as a time which I matured and came to better understand who I am and what my needs are. At the end of the day if I do regret transferring, at least it would have been my own mistake and not a mistake I made out the fear of disappointing others.

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Florence O'Connor - New York University

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