University reaches out to transfer to keep them connected

The university is providing transfer students with opportunities to get connected with the campus community, a campus official said, although a national survey shows transfers often fall through the cracks.

The National Survey of Student Engagement stated that transfer students reported less interaction with faculty, a less-supportive campus environment, less “active and collaborative learning,” and fewer “enriching educational experiences.”

But Rachael Taber, senior nursing major and transfer student, said she was happy with her transfer experience.

“After having been tossed into the system to fend for myself at Baylor, transferring to TCU was very welcoming,” Taber said.

Kay Higgins, associate dean for student development, said the university starts helping transfer students as soon as they’re admitted.

“Once students are admitted, members of the transfer student advisory board call them, answer questions and encourage them to attend orientation and all beginning connection options,” Higgins said.

Higgins said there are many ways for transfer students to start getting involved.

“We provide Orientation, Frog Camp and T-Connections classes in the first six weeks of class. There is also a weekly newsletter to transfer students for their first semester at TCU,” Higgins said.

T-Connections is a class specifically for transfer students to help them get acquainted with the university, to answer any questions they have about campus life and to give them an opportunity to meet other students.

According to the Connections Web site, students in the T-Connections class explore topics like campus resources, academic success, priority management, campus involvement and finding natural strengths.

Rachael Carranza, senior advertising/public relations major and transfer programs student coordinator, said the transfer program has been successful in helping transfers begin their TCU career on a positive note.

“We’ve had a lot of positive feedback,” Carranza said. “This year was the highest participation we’ve had in terms of transfer orientation and Frog Camp. We had more than 400 students and parents come to orientation and transfer attendance at Frog Camp is way up,” she said.

This semester, 409 students transferred to the university, Carranza said.

Chris Cook, a senior secondary education life science major who transferred from Northlake College in Irving, said the transfer process was fairly smooth.

“The people I worked with were fantastic,” Cook said. “The adviser I got, Kara Cox, was very helpful.”

Higgins said the transfer program continues to grow to meet the needs of its students.

“If a transfer student identifies a need, we will respond to it,” Higgins said.