I’m sure at this point everyone’s heard the age-old adage “college is the best four years of your life.” You are finally going to be free and independent to do whatever you want, discover and build upon your passions, meet life-long friends, and work to achieve your dreams and ambitions. But what if you show up to your campus, freshmen year is in full-swing, and you start to realize – this whole college thing absolutely sucks? Well, I can’t save you there, but I could help you not make the same mistake in the future. The fact of the matter is, your whole college experience could be significantly impacted by the college you decide to attend. While you may think college just might not be for you, the more likely case is that the college you chose to attend is just not for you.
That being said, exactly how many students decide to transfer colleges?
A six-year study done by the National Student Clearinghouse (NSC) found that a shocking 38%, or 1,069,243 out of 2,816,648 post-secondary students who began their college careers in fall of 2011 ended up transferring to different institutions over a six-year time period.
Even more shocking is the demographic of transfer students. Over half of all college students who transfer are younger than 21 years old! This is the time period in a person’s life where they are very likely to be influenced by outside factors such as parents, friends, peers, etc. This gives further evidence to the fact that choosing the right college the first time is absolutely crucial.
So, what is the reason that so many young college students are opting to transfer to different schools?
While there are of course many reasons that students transfer to different colleges, such as work-related problems, academic-related problems, or relocation, the majority of students transfer because they were influenced by outside factors to choose their original college. Choosing your college is probably the first major decision many students have had to make, and it is a decision that students often make with limited information; and for the wrong reasons. According to our research, the primary outside factors that influence a person’s choice of schools are:
Family – Many college students are influenced by their parents to choose a specific college – usually the college that they went to. The parents may want their child to have the same experience they had at the college or simply continue the family tradition as a legacy student. We must keep in mind however, that their experiences were in a completely different time with completely different people. The likelihood of you having the same experience is close to zero, as it was their personal experience, not yours. While there are some incentives to being a legacy, they certainly aren’t enough to override a bad college experience. Sure, you may get a pat on the back from your parents for following in their footsteps or access to certain legacy programs/ scholarships, but it will not be worth it if your college experience is miserable there otherwise.
Friends and Relationships – For some, this may be the hardest part of choosing what college to go to. Perhaps you may feel like you are abandoning your friends or romantic partners by moving to a college far away from them. But you must keep in mind that the decision to continue your education and achieve your long-term goals is for yourself. As a young adult, you need to think “what will be the best for myself in the future?” While it is often difficult to stray away from your friends or romantic partners, this decision will likely affect the rest of your life so you really need to think of the bigger picture. Also, there will be plenty of time to see friends and romantic partners during breaks and the summer time.
Cost – It is no secret that the cost of attending college is on the rise. In fact, the cost of attending college has seen a more than 538% increase since 1985. I’m not saying it is worth it to go in over your head in debt, but don’t let the cost of your dream college hold you back from at least applying to the college. If you scratching your head looking at the costs of attending certain colleges, especially if you are from a lower-income family, the idea of attending college may be seen as a far cry away from what you can afford. However, nearly every college in the United States offers significant financial aid packages to college students, especially students coming from low-income families. With that said, you should always at least wait to see your financial aid package before not attending a college solely due to the cost. Also, there are many additional options such as work-study and low interest loans you could apply for to help pay for your college education. ALWAYS speak with your top-choice’s financial aid department, as they will likely be able to show you more options to afford attending their college.
To sum it up, college students transferring to different colleges is becoming more and more popular as the years go by. The main reason that so many students transfer to different colleges is simple – They didn’t pick the right college to attend in the first place. That being said, why not use a program designed to make choosing the right college a quick, easy, and stress-free process? With RubikQuest, you don’t have to make the same mistakes so many college students have fell victim to. By using RubikQuest, the most powerful datamart ever assembled for higher education, students like you will have access to a database of more than 1300 universities, over 200 majors, and over 2000 cities to help choose the best college for you! It’s simple, just tell RubikQuest what you find important in a higher education institution, and let the magic happen as it churns through thousands of data points in a matter of seconds to find the top matches for you! You can get started by clicking the link here: https://www.rubikquest.com/searchcollege#step-1