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marbel

Transferring from CC to Uni - spring semester - is that a bad idea?

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I have a kid planning to transfer from CC to Uni.  Because of LD issues, he only takes 12/13 credits a semester so will graduate in December (5 CC semesters rather than 4).  So that would set him up to transfer in spring semester.

 

I've heard pros and cons to transferring in the spring.  Of course it would save time for him not to wait a semester.  But I'm thinking of the social aspects. This kid will have a hard time assimilating into the living-away-from-home environment.   It seems like it might be better when more of his fellow students are also new to the school. I did some googling and what I saw indicates that a much higher number of students transfer in fall than in spring - which is understandable. But I was surprised at some of the numbers - 50 fall, 10 spring, for example. 

 

I don't love the idea of him delaying any longer, but he is a kid who has always needed more time. (You might have been my chat thread on late-blooming boys.) Lots of issues I won't get into here, but ADHD, LDs including non-verbal learning disorder, some anxiety, social awkwardness.   

 

Any thoughts here?  

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I started college in the spring and it WAS very difficult to jump in what felt like midway.  However, I have difficulty with these things in general so it is hard to say if it was the situation or me.  But I dunno if I'd make him wait either for that reason.

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I started college in the spring and it WAS very difficult to jump in what felt like midway.  However, I have difficulty with these things in general so it is hard to say if it was the situation or me.  But I dunno if I'd make him wait either for that reason.

 

He has difficulty with pretty much everything, especially situations involving other people.  

Edited by marbel

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I'm good at tuning people out so...LOL

 

I'll just say that I did not enjoy living on campus and that was the one semester I lived there.  I transferred after that to a local school and finished there.  I don't think anything could have been different to make me want to stay. 

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It's going to depend what kind of school he's transferring to -- a primarily commuter school will have less of that -- but yes, in general all the "welcome new freshies" stuff is in the fall, so spring people are kinda jumping in. If he has difficulties anyways, it might be a good idea to aim for the fall. 

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We did have some welcome new people and welcome back for the new semester type events.  One of the gals in my dorm room was also new.  Everyone was also very welcoming towards me and invited me to stuff.  The fact I didn't get all that involved was me and not the school or the other people. 

 

My older kid is like me.  He doesn't want to go away to school.  One school he is eying might mean he has to go there.  I'm hoping he can get a private dorm room because I think that would just be better for him.  He so badly hates the idea of living there though that he considered driving nearly 2 hours one way there.  Nutty kid.  So I'm hoping he ends up going closer. I do understand how he feels though. 

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The hardest thing about transition mid-year, I would think, would be transitioning into dorm life.  Some extracurricular activities may be difficult to join mid-year, but most schools will have plenty of activities that will not require fall involvement.  Does the school have any orientation or special programs for those who start in spring?  If so, the transition may be easier.  Or, if it is a school where the RAs in the dorm typically are highly involved with the students, it will be easier.  (I have seen some schools where an RA would recognize the situation and make an extra effort to get the new student involved and feeling comfortable and I have seen other schools where the RA wouldn't even realize this is a student new to the school.)

 

One positive is some students get overwhelmed by 25% of the people on campus being new, all wandering around equally confused and anxious.  He might feel he is stepping into a more settled environment starting in the spring.

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If you have a specific college in mind, talk to them (particularly the disabilities services people) and see if they have advice.

 

Another worry with a kid with LDs would be loss of academic momentum if he takes spring semester and summer off.

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Many years ago when I was in this same situation I transferred in the spring. It was an easy transition for me but I was at a big state school and was definitely not the only spring transfer. Honestly I didn't feel like I missed out on anything and I was grateful not to have to sit around and wait until fall as taking time off of school would not have been good for me. 

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OK, thanks for these comments.  It's helpful as we think things through.  

 

Oh, fwiw, he would be happy to wait.  He is all for waiting, not rushing into anything, delaying as long as possible.  I have considered that he might need more time for that frontal lobe to mature.  He's not an immature person, exactly, but... well, those executive functions are not there yet.   Community college is working well for him, but I still give a fair bit of support. I'm more ready for him to move on than he is.  

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Out of curiosity, would he be interested in taking a few more classes at the CC? Investigate with the school of course, but sometimes they'll accept up to 72, and even if not, a few more advanced classes would give him something to do and let him take higher level classes at the 4-year and/or do better in them. 

 

Another option would be seeing if one of the CC profs would be interested in letting him do an independent research project -- I just noticed his intent. A local/public history project would be absolutely amazing and look utterly awesome on his resume when he goes for those incredibly competitive jobs. One of my facebook friends is a public historian and the projects he has his students do are wonderful. 

 

Another option -- blacksmith training, tillers international does classes. Possibly welding at the CC as well? 

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Out of curiosity, would he be interested in taking a few more classes at the CC? Investigate with the school of course, but sometimes they'll accept up to 72, and even if not, a few more advanced classes would give him something to do and let him take higher level classes at the 4-year and/or do better in them. 

 

Another option would be seeing if one of the CC profs would be interested in letting him do an independent research project -- I just noticed his intent. A local/public history project would be absolutely amazing and look utterly awesome on his resume when he goes for those incredibly competitive jobs. One of my facebook friends is a public historian and the projects he has his students do are wonderful. 

 

Another option -- blacksmith training, tillers international does classes. Possibly welding at the CC as well? 

 

These are all interesting thoughts!  I will have/help him look for credit transfer limits. 

 

He would keep busy at CC or elsewhere if he transfers later.  He is looking now for summer work/volunteer opportunities at nearby museums which potentially could keep him going for a semester "off" and yes, would look good on his resume.  

 

As far as blacksmithing, he has taken some classes though we have not found too many opportunities here. He does not see it as a career path though since he was a kid we'd joke about him being the blacksmith at a living history museum. He's not really interested in teaching though of course that could change. He's also taken some welding classes.  Community College in our county and those surrounding don't offer that though, other than as an upper-level art class (with lots of art prereqs)!  

 

Great food for thought!  Thank you!

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He's not an immature person, exactly, but... well, those executive functions are not there yet. Community college is working well for him, but I still give a fair bit of support. I'm more ready for him to move on than he is.

Would it make sense to stay at CC but have him transition from your support to the college's disability service department to practice his self advocacy skills before transferring? Even if he wound up with more credits than could transfer, it might be good practice.

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Would it make sense to stay at CC but have him transition from your support to the college's disability service department to practice his self advocacy skills before transferring? Even if he wound up with more credits than could transfer, it might be good practice.

 

Yes. I'm backing off more and more.  Slowly.  We talk about self-advocacy a lot, and he is depending more on the disabilities office as time goes on.  They are pretty helpful there.  My first answer to any question is variation on: did you talk to your adviser (disabilities office, professor, etc)?  I'll be happier when he thinks that way without me prompting him.  :-)

 

Though we don't have buckets of money to throw at college, it wouldn't be the worst thing for him to stick around the CC longer even if it means he ends up with some nontransferable credits. For example, he has to take a good bit of foreign language, and I could see him having to take something twice. 

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My son is in a quarter system school.  He jumped in as a new student in January, 2nd quarter.  It has been hard, but I am not sure it would have been easy for him to go Fall quarter.  He has ASD and struggles and will struggle no matter when the move is.

 

So I am not sure I can answer that as I think it is different for every kid.

 

Mine is making it work, loves the classes, loves the school itself, but says he isn't making friends.  What *I* see is that in 4 weeks has has 5 new phone numbers in his phone and has gone out to dinner and more social events than he ever has, so I am not sure what lens he is using! I see tremendous growth!

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Does he have specific schools in mind? If so, you could check them out specifically. My older dd's school has Winter Welcome, a bunch of activities designed for students coming in mid-year. It's not quite as elaborate as Week of Welcome in the fall, but you could definitely be doing more than one thing every day no matter what your schedule. 

 

Visits can also give you an idea of the general campus culture. We have visited campuses where people don't say hello unless they know you, and we have visited campuses where people immediately walk up to you and offer help when you pull out a map. 

 

All schools will offer accommodations, but some colleges are better than others at offering specific types of support. Nichols State University has a center for dyslexia on campus, and thus outstanding dyslexia services for students. University of Alabama offers a transition and support program for students on the spectrum. There is a lot out there, but you have to sift through a lot of information. 

 

Is there a specific geographic area you are focusing on? Like, schools within 3 hours of XYZ city? 

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Aside from how he might handle the transition, I suggest considering how it might affect where he'll be in the degree program when he enters.  By that I mean that some courses specific to a major are only offered in the fall and some only in the spring.  My son encountered that when he transferred to another school--he was off the regular cycle of course offerings for his degree.  One foundational course that is needed as a prerequisite for others might only be offered in one or the other semester.  Then the course progression gets thrown off.  My DS's progress was thrown off by a semester (meaning he'd need to go an extra semester to complete his major requirements).  Fortunately, he could fill in with some general education (core) credits to remain full-time in the first two semesters, but as he began planning for his last two semesters at CC, he realized that he couldn't do it and was forced to take one more foundational course in his major before adding in the remaining major courses.  He since side-stepped this by changing his major, which allows a concentration in what he was originally pursuing as an two degree, and he'll get to the 4 year as planned.  Looking ahead, though, he will be entering in the spring semester yet again when he transitions to the 4 year, and he's going to have to consider taking some courses during the summer (and online with the 4 year while he's still on campus at the CC--he's admitted under a dual admission agreement) in order to be on track for the progression or major courses he will take at the 4 year.

 

My son hates planning out what's ahead, but he was forced to consider all this carefully in order to graduate when he hopes to.

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My son is in a quarter system school.  He jumped in as a new student in January, 2nd quarter.  It has been hard, but I am not sure it would have been easy for him to go Fall quarter.  He has ASD and struggles and will struggle no matter when the move is.

 

So I am not sure I can answer that as I think it is different for every kid.

 

Mine is making it work, loves the classes, loves the school itself, but says he isn't making friends.  What *I* see is that in 4 weeks has has 5 new phone numbers in his phone and has gone out to dinner and more social events than he ever has, so I am not sure what lens he is using! I see tremendous growth!

 

Just an update.  We went down this past weekend for his birthday and he came and stayed at an AirBnB with us.  He needed to decompress a bit.

 

Then on Sun we went out with him AND a FRIEND to early lunch before heading back.  

 

Overall, we are thrilled and think he is doing great.

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Mine is making it work, loves the classes, loves the school itself, but says he isn't making friends.  What *I* see is that in 4 weeks has has 5 new phone numbers in his phone and has gone out to dinner and more social events than he ever has, so I am not sure what lens he is using! I see tremendous growth!

 

Maybe the same lens my dd used in preschool? I went to her teacher because every time I asked her if she had fun, she would say, a little. And when I asked who she played with, she sighed deeply and said, nobody. 

 

Her teacher had me leave the classroom one day but stay outside until they got started, and then peek in the window. Little miss no-fun-or-friends was happily chatting and playing, just having a ball with numerous other kids, lol. 

 

She's in college now, and still tends to underestimate her social circle. It's some weird glitch some people have.  She's NT but quiet and definitely has to work at putting herself forward. 

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DD transferred from CC to state uni in a spring semester.  A couple issues that she ran into that I haven't seen voiced yet is:

 

1. School scholarships. These are usually doled out in the fall so there was nothing left for DD for the spring semester despite her perfect grades and high test scores.  She did get a great one for the following year though by applying as a continuing student once at that school.

 

2. Internships for the following summer.  The application systems couldn't grasp that she was attending school 2 but only had a transcript for school 1 since she had just started at school 2.  They would weed her out as having an incomplete application without that second transcript. She did end up in a research internship through her uni so it worked out in the end.

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