Advice From a Fellow Transfer Student

By Latanya Donaldson

As a transfer student you already mastered the art of partying all night while still being able to accomplish excellent last minute essays and cramming study hours into your busy social and school life. Once again, you feel like a freshman. The combination of excitement and nervousness is enough to make you second guess your decision, but still you are confident that you are transferring for all the right reasons. Now comes getting used to a new campus, rules, food, people, teachers, environment and so much more! Everyone will have a different approach as to tackle those things.
People transfer for many different reasons, but with all the same hopes that their new school of a choice will offer both a great academic opportunity and a social life like no other. As a transfer student achieving academic success can be a little easier than having the dream college social life. Clicks have already formed and apartment style living isn’t as friendly as living in a dorm. So exactly how do you make friends?

First of all be yourself (if it worked at your previous college, chances are it will work at SC). Second, get involved. I wouldn’t have the amazing friends I have if it wasn’t for my involvement in the LGBT community. I am not advising that you become a member of every club just to make friends. However, USC offers numerous clubs and volunteer opportunities and one of them is sure to take up your interest. Join a club that catches your eye. You will meet people who share similar interest as you which could lead to some of the best times of your life. Third, don’t be afraid to talk to people in your class (no one is listening to the professor anyway). People here are extremely friendly and are always open to meeting new people. You can never have too many friends it might take time, but sure enough you will be enjoying the truly amazing social life that University of Southern California offers!

My first year at USC as a LGBT transfer student wasn’t as lonely as I thought it would be. There are no specific LGBT groups that help transfer students adjust, but in all honesty you don’t need it. There is a special interest floor called the “Rainbow Floor” where the doors are always open if you need someone to talk to, play guitar hero with, or watch America’s Next Top Model.

Zachery Keyse, former Executive Director for the GLBTA and transfer student, and Wendy Barclay, a fierce LGBT supporter.

Zachery Keyse, former Executive Director for the GLBTA and transfer student, and Wendy Barclay, a fierce LGBT supporter.

The Welcome Back BBQ is a great way to meet new people and see familiar faces that you will see throughout the year. In addition to the other popular events, the weekly U-Rap meeting is another great way to meet people, voice your opinion on LGBT related issues while, and learn new things. I could go on forever, but like I previously said everyone has a different approach when it comes to adjusting to new things so just do whatever you feel comfortable with. Explore, explore, explore! Chances are USC offers many LGBT clubs and events that your previous school and high school did being that we are rated among the top LGBT friendly campus.

Apart from being involved in the LGBT community, I also got involved with things that are major related. I joined the concert committee, music industry club, and attending various events on campus. A little off topic, but if LGBT issues and events don’t interest you then get involved in things you feel passionate about. Who says just because you are LGBT means you have to attend every protest and be super involved? You also don’t need LGBT friends to help you adjust or make transfer life easier and there are other ways to meet LGBT students. You just need people you feel comfortable and have a good time with.

Just remember as a transfer LGBT student here at the amazing University of Southern California you are never alone. You will have help from getting the grade, to making friends, and making great connection in the LGBT community that can last a lifetime. Of course it will take some effort on your end, don’t be afraid to step in and make you time here one that you will never forget!

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