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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Advisers explain essential details for scholarships

January 22, 2020 | Dang Le | managing editor
photos by Brooke Baldwin/The Collegian. NE transfer center coordinator Brittni Hollis explains the requirements for the student to optimize his transferring process to UNT during a session Jan. 15.
photos by Brooke Baldwin/The Collegian. NE transfer center coordinator Brittni Hollis explains the requirements for the student to optimize his transferring process to UNT during a session Jan. 15.

Most TCC students plan to transfer to four-year colleges and universities, but academic advisers say the transition requires more planning than some would think. Students not only have to prepare the documents, but they also need to be ready mentally.

“They are usually afraid of the new environment because they’ve been so comfortable here at TCC,” TR academic advisor Anamaria Olivares said. “The thought of leaving causes stress for them and maybe even gets them to start a new degree or two, which sometimes makes sense.” 

TR transferring center coordinator Laura Escamilla points out even more personal reasons.

“Sometimes, being away from family is too much for them, or there are just some family tragedies,” she said. 

When the students try to complete their degree at TCC, they may make mistakes that could hinder their possibility to transfer efficiently.

TR student Tulasha Biswa (right) talks to student development assistant Brianna Frenzel (left) about setting an appointment for advising on transferring steps from TCC to a university.

“Take an Associate of Arts degree as an example. It is very flexible to transfer, which is why students choose very easy math courses to complete,” Escamilla said. “However, I can take a math class and be core-completed, but that doesn’t mean that I have the right class for a degree in my major.”

Escamilla also mentioned how students usually wait until their last semester to complete their more challenging courses. 

“Unless you are majoring in engineering, there’s no need to take two science classes together and a math class,” she said. “I have a student who has one more semester left before they finish, so they’re looking for what to take this last semester: They haven’t done their math, and they haven’t done their science.”

As to when students should start their transfer applications, Escamilla believes it’s never too early to plan the process.

“Connect with universities, get some information and go visit the school,” she said. “Start as early as possible because the key part is to get the information, whether at the transfer center or universities’ transfer fairs.”

According to UTA admissions counselor Trevor Meagher, students’ biggest mistake is to wait and apply at the last minute. 

“We always encourage students to apply early, ideally about two semesters before they actually want to begin at UTA,” he said. “This ensures that we have plenty of time to review paperwork and get them prepared for a smooth and successful transfer.”

Meagher also said UTA would accept students until a term starts, but for Escamilla, she noticed students frequently misunderstand the concept. 

“Students are usually fixated by application deadline versus scholarship deadline,” she said. “March 1 is a common scholarship deadline.”

TR student Caleb Montana is a work-study student in the TR Idea Store who plans to transfer to the University of North Texas or Dallas Baptist University next semester. 

“I’m gonna miss TCC because this is my first college,” he said. “I’ve already known a lot of people here, and it was really fun.”

For Montana, the biggest challenge will be trying to adapt to the new environment. 

“You have to get used to the new life,” he said. “There’s a lot more space and people, and you can get lost in the crowd.”

To solve the problem, TR director of counseling Deidra Turner advised students to explore the new college to get ready. 

“The earlier you get connected to the campus, the better,” she said. 

The representatives also reminded students not to panic because there are a lot of help centers around them. 

“Sometimes, students forget that myself and the other admissions counselors are here to help,” Meagher reminded. “Never be afraid to check in with us so that we can keep you filled in on your application status and any other details you may need.”

In the event that students worry about working with the university’s admissions counselor, TCC transfer centers have a great support system to help students ask a college representative for the most helpful information.

“If a student has worked with their advisers and counselors at TCC, they are usually very knowledgeable by the time they speak to me or another university representative,” Meagher said.

And lastly, there’s nothing wrong if students are lost within the transferring process. 

“You start slow doesn’t mean you have to know what you want exactly but start determining what you want to do and give yourself options,” Escamilla said.

 

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