By Shane Surrey
According to a 2008 report by the U.S. Educational Department, 1 in 5 undergraduate college students is a transfer.
At AJU, a little over half of the student population is transfers; Dean Stuart Sigman stated that the proportion of transfer students has been consistently growing.
This is no surprise: transfer rates have been increasing at every college and university. The UC system has seen its total number of transfers increase from 8,164 in the 1989-1990 academic year to 14,690 in the 2009-2010 academic year. Transfer rates from many community colleges have increased as well. Santa Monica College’s transfer rate increased from 1,242 for 1989-1990 to 1,833 for 2009-2010.
However, transfer rates have dropped in the last year, possibly due to economic hardships, as some students seem to be dropping out of school to enter the workforce rather than transferring to a different college. Despite this recent trend, transfer rates are still relatively high.
Students transfer to AJU for a wide variety of reasons, whether it be the school’s small size, academic offerings or location in the heart of L.A.
Neti Dembowich transferred to AJU because, after completing the curriculum at a two-year institution, she wished to continue her education. In addition to continuing one’s education, Director of Residence Life Jacob Gown added that another reason people come to AJU is for the close-knit environment.
“Some people come here specifically for that community,” Gown explained.
Indeed, many transfer students have actively immersed themselves in campus life; all of the Residential Advisers this semester happen to be transfers. Dembowich, who has attended AJU for almost two years, is not only one of the Residential Advisers but also the school’s Israel Culture Programs Coordinator. Last year, she organized 10 events for the school and found the funding from outside resources.
She stated, “Having transferred here, I know what else was out there, and it’s made me grateful to be here.”
The transfer policies seem to be easy enough. The only common issue in the transfer process is the transferring of credits. The school accepts most credits as long as they came from an accredited university or college and the student received a C or higher in the class.
However, any credits being transferred must be less than seven years old. This is usually where most issues arise. Although Sigman said that there have been issues because of this in the past, exceptions have been made, typically when a student is trying to transfer previous science or math courses.
Overall, any potential difficulties with transferring credits seem to be outweighed by the campus life and opportunities that AJU has to offer.