BY CHRISTYANNE SAN JUAN
Photo courtesy of The Chaparral.
The Cravens Student Services Center was busy with curious students Oct. 10 when College of the Desert held its Annual Fall Transfer Fair. COD welcomed 42 different universities from all over California and several from out of state.
Many COD students’ primary goal is to successfully transfer to a four-year university and earn their bachelor’s degree. With over 5,000 four-year institutions in the United States alone, the number of options could be overwhelming for some. However, according to COD Transfer Counselor, Scott Cooper, transfer fairs ease the process exponentially.
“The reason why we have so many schools here today is so students can look at all their options,” Cooper explained. “Transfer fairs allow students to communicate with schools they might have never considered before that want transfer students in particular.”
One of the options students may not have considered is the possibility of attending a school outside of California. Many institutions offer a significant amount of financial aid and scholarships for students from out of the state, opening more doors than students may have thought they had. “These schools could actually end up cheaper than in-state schools,” Cooper assured. “We have students that go everywhere.”
The opportunities for COD students were made immediately apparent by the welcoming atmosphere of the fair. Hundreds of students were greeted as they entered the Cravens multi-purpose room. Students met with dozens of representatives from prospective universities. Pamphlets, pens, flashlights and hand sanitizers were also given to students by the many schools visiting.
It is understandable why these schools are marketing themselves specifically to transfer students. According to Cooper, many universities have found that transfer students have a higher rate of graduation than those entering as a freshman. As opposed to first-year students, those who are transferring have experience in college-level classes, many of which are much larger than those found in high school. Transfer students also have 60 units complete and have maintained a high enough GPA. This can make them eligible to transfer.
Cooper also strongly believes that COD students should ask the right questions to ensure that the work they do in community college can transfer to a university. “Besides asking about tuition, students should ask how many units they can take and inquire about support services for transfer students,” Cooper advised. “Because transfer students are coming in as juniors, they should ask about housing and financial aid to make things more affordable.”
The goal of the Transfer Fair is to ensure that COD students are aware of all of their opportunities. Cooper encourages students to take advantage of the services provided by COD’s Transfer Center that helps students seek the best education possible.
To learn more about transfer services offered at COD, visit the Transfer Center on the second floor of the Cravens Student Services Center or call 760-862-1351.