By LAUREN EBBEN, Staff Reporter ¦
Amarillo College is often a steppingstone for students who don’t plan on going to a university right out of high school, whether it’s helping these students discover a major or helping them spend a little less money learning the basics. In whatever case, transferring is the ultimate end goal for these students. But the process isn’t always easy.
“The hardest part that could possibly be that way is just the receiving end of it, which would be the next institution,” adviser Ruth De Anda said. “What I’ve caught is, maybe there is something specific a student needed to take, and they maybe didn’t prepare accordingly.”
And while some students may hear horror stories about transferring, such as entire classes not being counted or not taken in places that count, advisers do their best to prevent this from happening.
“We really try to create partnerships with our universities so that we can kind of make it a little easier for you to transfer without having those issues of credit hours,” said Director of Advising Ernesto Olmos.
There are also several ways students can help to make the transfer process a little smoother, Olmos said, one begin the student planner, a tool that helps students plan out their classes for future semesters.
“The goal with that is that students are not being given a greenlight to just register for whatever,” De Anda said. “The blanket greenlight, as I like to call it, doesn’t exist anymore. What we’re doing is just making sure that you’re not taking things you shouldn’t be taking.”
Students can also help by doing a little research themselves. The Texas Common Course Numbering System is used by community colleges and universities throughout the state of Texas. The system allows students to compare courses between schools, giving them a better idea about what will transfer and what won’t. Students can check out the tool at https://www.tccns.org/.
Most schools also have some kind of transfer equivalency page as well that helps students determine classes that transfer.
“I always want to sit down with students and say, ‘What is the school’s degree plan of what you want to do … because if there is something specific, say if the school wants a very specific science, or very specific math, those are the conversations we want to have at the beginning,” De Anda said.
The AC Transfer Club, sponsored by Olmos, can help students, too. “The goal of the Transfer Club is really to get students informed,” Olmos said. “In the past, we’ve brought in guest speakers from universities to talk to students about programs. We’ve taken trips to WT, Texas Tech, we have workshops, we’ve done essay writing workshops for applications, or scholarship opportunities.”
The club also helps with transfer fairs.
“It really is a good way for students to start connecting and talking and thinking ‘transfer,’” Olmos said about the fairs.
And some students already have this ‘transfer’ mindset. Michelle Wittler, a biology major with an emphasis in pre-med, will be transferring to Texas A&M University in the fall of 2019.
“The transfer process has gone very smoothly since I knew where I wanted to transfer to. Since I knew where I was going, I looked up the transfer course sheet for my specific college at the university. It had the classes and what GPA I needed to be accepted to the school,” Wittler said.
For more information about transferring schools, visit the transfer page on the AC website, https://www.actx.edu/advising/transfer, or the Advising Center located on the Washington Street campus.