NYU buildings and a flag.


While navigating a new world during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and finals during my first year of college, I made the decision to transfer to NYU. When I applied to transfer, NYU being my dream school was motivation enough, but I didn’t really consider the other aspects of the process. I had never met another transfer student before and was really nervous about moving across the country from the only city I’ve ever lived in. Now, as a transfer student ambassador and Admissions Ambassador, I’ve been able to learn a lot about the process. Sometimes resources for the transfer community are limited. Read on for some transfer-to-transfer advice from students who have been where you are now.

NYU transfer student ambassadors.
Transfer student ambassadors after hosting the Transfer Pre-Orientation Program (TPOP).
1) Embrace Being a Transfer Student

Transfer students bring new perspectives to the student body that should be showcased. As a transfer student, you already know a lot about what you want and don’t want in a university. You came to NYU for a reason. So embrace your prior experiences and share them with your peers! Don’t succumb to imposter syndrome. You belong here, and you should be proud of all of your accomplishments that brought you here.

2) Advocate for Yourself

The credit transfer process is one of the trickiest and most daunting parts of transitioning to a new school. As your credits start to roll in, don’t be afraid to advocate for yourself. For example, if you think a previous class you took should count for more or something different, discuss it with your adviser and work it out! Your advising team is there to help make your transition as smooth as possible. But nobody knows you and your classes better than you do. Share your knowledge!

3) It’s OK to Be a First Year

When I transferred to NYU as a sophomore, I had already done a first-year orientation and didn’t want to be viewed again as a first year at my new school. Little did I know that I would meet some of my best friends at these events. So go to all of the “uncool” social events during Welcome Week, transfer orientation, and your school’s individual orientation. NYU makes Welcome Week extremely fun, and it’s a great way to meet new people.

The author and some of their transfer student friends.
Me and my fellow transfer friends skating in Central Park! We all met through orientation and Welcome Week events.

More from Current Students:

Jillian Pizza, Politics, College of Arts and Science

“NYU is a big school and it can be really intimidating, especially for a transfer. Getting involved in any way you can helps make such a large community feel smaller. I joined Greek life here, which I never thought I would do when I was at another school. However, the nature of Greek life is super chill here, and it allowed me to find community. I think joining one of the many clubs and organizations and keeping an open mind is the best way to get comfortable with the NYU community.”

Olivia Olsen, International Relations, College of Arts and Science

“Talk to everyone, be bold, and don’t hold back! If you do, you might miss the chance to meet really cool and interesting people who could easily become some of your best friends. Through transfer orientation and Welcome Week, I was able to meet some of my best friends, and I’m so grateful I put myself out there and went to all of the events.”

Cameron Bedard, Computer Engineering, Tandon School of Engineering

“‘Transfer’ could be synonymous with ‘renaissance’ or ‘rebirth’ whether you are transferring from a two-year college or a four-year university that wasn’t quite a fit for you. You have a feeling of what worked and what didn’t. Use that as a framework for what to do and not to do while carving out a slice of NYU life for yourself. Maybe you want to go to bed earlier or join more clubs. Attend all the transfer and welcome events. Introduce yourself to the people next to you during each event, again and again. It may take a few tries, but you will meet people and form friendships. Take note of every resource they throw at you and use them all.”

Elly McCullumsmith, Economics, College of Arts and Science

“Make the most of NYU and New York City. NYU really gives students the opportunity to explore their interests. My favorite classes were ones outside of my major that were about other topics I’m passionate about. Don’t be afraid to explore classes and the city itself.”

Allie Leeds, English and American Literature, College of Arts and Science

“Transferring to NYU changed my life in the best way. I think attitude is really important. You get what you put into the experience. So put yourself out there, take interesting classes, explore the city, and I think you will make beautiful memories and relationships that will last a lifetime. The biggest thing I can recommend is saying yes and being bold—go to transfer events, ask people in your classes to grab a coffee, discuss opportunities with professors. If you do that, I think you can have a great experience at NYU.”

Alexis is a senior in the College of Arts and Science studying International Relations with a minor in Classical Civilizations on the prelaw track. Originally from Arizona, Alexis came to NYU as the first in her family to leave Tucson. When she’s not sharing fun facts about cacti and her hometown, she can be found giving a tour outside Washington Square Park, working as a transfer student ambassador, and writing for the International Relations Society. When she’s not working as an Admissions Ambassador, you can find Alexis exploring New York’s many bookstores.