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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Friday, May 24, 2024

Medford’s Carrie Bradshaw: What it’s like to be a transfer student (at Tufts)

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According to the National Student Clearinghouse, just over one-third of college students transfer schools before earning their degree. Then why does it feel like such a big deal?

Have you ever thought about transferring colleges? Maybe you have, but decided against it out of sheer reluctance to start all over again. Listen, I don’t blame you. Maybe you’ve had friends who transferred, and you couldn’t help but wonder why someone would put themselves through that.

The moment I stepped onto my previous institution’s campus, I knew things were not quite right for me. The culture and the location were obstructing my ability to be myself, and I had a picture in my mind that if I were to attend Tufts, things would be much clearer.

Well, now I’m here. I got exactly what I asked for — and when you get what you ask for, there’s a weird feeling that arises that you can’t quite name. Transferring to your dream school is sort of surreal, and I find myself questioning quite often what exactly I had in mind throughout high school and last year.

Being a transfer means feeling out of place sometimes. That’s not to say you’re uncomfortable, but at the start, there’s a small division between you and the students who have been at Tufts this entire time.

Being a transfer has made me more introspective about college life and the absurdity of it all. Now that I’ve had two freshman years in a sense, I’ve seen how students generally find people in the first few days of school and then stick together like glue for the rest of the year — possibly through the rest of their four years. I wonder what cosmic forces bring us together or if it’s all by chance.

Another thing about being a transfer is that you may feel the need to overextend yourself. I think I’ve taken too much on my plate since getting here, wanting to try everything and be everywhere. In reality, your schedule would benefit from being more manageable, and other people don’t care how much you do; everything is in your own hands.

It’s hard not to close yourself off from the idea of meeting new people after the first few weeks or so of college because it all becomes so familiar and feels permanent. But if you don’t keep trying to experience something new, you might never see what’s really out there. That’s why I transferred — I knew that while I could exist in peace at my old school, there was something, somewhere out there more meaningful for me. I’m glad I made that move.