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Articles / Applying to College / Advice for Second-Time-Around Transfer

Advice for Second-Time-Around Transfer

Sally Rubenstone
Written by Sally Rubenstone | Sept. 29, 2015

Question: Hi! I recently transferred as a sophomore to a small university in Florida but I really don’t enjoy it at all. I want to transfer to University of South Florida for the upcoming Spring semester but am wondering how I go on about that if the deadline is October but my grades/gpa won’t be released until December. Please help, I don’t think I can stay at this uni until next fall haha… Thanks!

College admission officials are accustomed to dealing with application deadlines that are out of sync with report card release dates. Because you’re a sophomore now, the grades you earned at your last college as a freshman will play a key role in your transfer verdict at the University of South Florida. USF admission officials may also want you to provide mid-term grades from the current semester as soon as you have them. (And, if you’re doing better this fall than you did last year, be sure to offer these grades, even if they’re not requested.) If you haven’t done so already, you should email the admission official at USF who will oversee your transfer process to ask him or her the same question you asked me. (If you can’t find a name and contact information on the USF Web site, just call the office of admission.)

On a different note, since this seems to be the second move for you in a short amount of time, admission officials may worry that you are a “serial transfer.” They might wonder if you’re going to be satisfied at ANY college. So “The Dean” advises you that, whether USF requires it or not, provide an explanation of why you want to transfer yet again, emphasizing what you have learned about yourself and about the sort of college that suits you best as a result of your two false starts. You want to convince the admission folks at USF that three’s the charm!


Written by

Sally Rubenstone

Sally Rubenstone

Sally Rubenstone knows the competitive and often convoluted college admission process inside out: From the first time the topic of college comes up at the dinner table until the last duffel bag is unloaded on a dorm room floor. She is the co-author of Panicked Parents' Guide to College Admissions; The Transfer Student's Guide to Changing Colleges and The International Student's Guide to Going to College in America. Sally has appeared on NBC's Today program and has been quoted in countless publications, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Weekend, USA Today, U.S. News & World Report, Newsweek, People and Seventeen. Sally has viewed the admissions world from many angles: As a Smith College admission counselor for 15 years, an independent college counselor serving students from a wide range of backgrounds and the author of College Confidential's "Ask the Dean" column. She also taught language arts, social studies, study skills and test preparation in 10 schools, including American international schools in London, Paris, Geneva, Athens and Tel Aviv. As senior advisor to College Confidential since 2002, Sally has helped hundreds of students and parents navigate the college admissions maze. In 2008, she co-founded College Karma, a private college consulting firm, with her College Confidential colleague Dave Berry, and she continues to serve as a College Confidential advisor. Sally and her husband, Chris Petrides, became first-time parents in 1997 at the ripe-old age of 45. So Sally was nearly an official senior citizen when her son Jack began the college selection process, and when she was finally able to practice what she had preached for more than three decades.

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