The end of the spring semester is creeping toward us, and with it comes the dreadful transfer process. Many of your friends (and perhaps even you) are going to be going through this stressful procedure; when it seems like the process is too much to endure, just remember that each year over 1,600 students start here before transferring, that’s a lot of students going through the same thing.
The transfer process can be an extremely overwhelming one. Fortunately, there are counselors on campus that can help you navigate your academic future. The counseling center on the Ammerman campus is located on the second floor of the Ammerman building. These counselors have a system of helping students try and find a path to a transfer school, and they also offer guidance in selecting these schools. When asked about the transfer process, Counselor Tania Velazquez began with a standard sheet of paper with a checklist and Schools in New York State. “(Students) come in, most of the time, they have no clue what they’re doing, so it’s overwhelming,” The checklist was simple enough to follow and had basic questions to begin a search for a new school. The first on the list was private vs SUNY schools, “Most students at Suffolk don’t want to leave Long Island,” she stated. “I’m a counselor that tries to push them off Long Island, just because it’s a good experience, to get away, to mature, I just think Long Island is a bubble,” The next listed item was the cost of the new school, this is a big factor for students when transferring.
Many students hear horror stories of student loans and want to avoid expensive schools, but grants and scholarships are available to make up the difference. “I always tell students, yeah the private schools are scary, but there’s tons of scholarships out there and you don’t know what financial aid you’re going to get,” The next item was population, large schools as opposed to small schools. This is often overlooked, and it should be considered when planning out the next two years of your life. “Yesterday I had a student come back from Stony Brook, it was too big for him,” she stated. “You have to know, can you be in a class with 400 and do well? Or do you need the smaller setting?” The next items on the list were scholarships and financial aid, which led to housing. Most SUNY schools offer dormitories, but they can be expensive, and it may serve you as a student to find an apartment, even if your school offers dorms. “Some schools don’t even have housing,” she said. “Students don’t realize that, so you have to get an apartment, like the city schools. City school housing is very different from upstate, New York,” Counselors here don’t just read off a script, they can and will sit down with you, if you make an appointment, and help get you on track with your search. “We normally tell students to apply to four or five schools,” she said. “We also tell them to make appointments, visit the schools, speak with financial aid, and send official transcripts,”
This school has plenty of services offered to students who are planning to transfer. The Transfer Counseling page on sunysuffolk.edu lists individual counseling, college search guides, applications to local and SUNY colleges, and transfer days. Transfer days are especially important because representatives from various schools come to the campus, usually set up in the Babylon Student Center and meet with students. Students can get a better feel for each college, ask questions, and perhaps make a decision based on what they see there. The Suffolk website has a page listing transfer agreements with many schools. This page shows what credits you took here, and you can see if they transfer to your desired school. The page is organized in order by college, then it lists the various majors that each school accepts from here. It then shows what level of degree the transfer school offers, and the minimum GPA that each student needs, in each major, in order to be accepted. In order to deal with the various stresses that comes along with transferring to another school, the SCCC website has a numerical checklist that can help organize your process. These web pages are extremely useful to wrap your head around the grueling transfer process.
You aren’t alone. This campus sees many of its students transfer to four year schools, and it isn’t uncommon. Applying to these schools may seem like a long and overwhelming process, but with the help of the services offered on campus, it can be a little easier. Make an appointment with a counselor, start thinking about the process, and figure out your next step.