More transfer students attend Queens College than first-year

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Queens College surpasses other CUNY colleges with the highest number of transfer students, according to CUNY’s Office of Institutional Research.

In fact, there are twice as many incoming transfer students than first-year freshman based on the office’s data.

Yet students, not just transfers, come to QC for a multitude of reasons, including the college’s rich scenery.

“Out of the four CUNY senior colleges and one non-CUNY college I visited, I fell in love with Queens College right away.” Chu Paing, a transfer student at QC, said. “Open air, the beautiful Quad and the breeze that carries the smell of fresh cut grass made me feel as if I could be out of town within the city; that feeling was exactly what I was looking for.”

The 2014 Princeton Review’s Guide to 334 Green Colleges referred to QC as the ‘jewel of the CUNY system’ with a beautiful campus filled with 80 acres of trees surrounding the grassy open spaces and the Quad.

QC was also the first-ranked public college in the nation as the ‘Best Bang for Your Buck,’ according to Washington Monthly. QC’s generous financial aid packages as well as its relatively low costs with more than 60 percent of students receiving such aid play a role in such a recognition.

The affordable college allows talented people of all backgrounds and financial means to get a first-rate education.

Paing said there were two reasons why transfer students did not adjust well when heading to their second school.

“First, they transfer as either upper sophomore or junior students, so they do not have much time to mingle with the college and feel the sense of belonging just as the other students would have already instilled. Second, there are not many programs that exclusively provide transfer students with financial assistance and academic help such as Macaulay Honors Program does for freshman. During my research, I learned about QC’s Transfer Honors Program,” Paing said.

The Transfer Honors Program, meanwhile, began with its first cohort in spring 2014. It offers scholarships and academic support for high achieving students who transferred from community colleges.

“[It] began as an effort to complement the honors communities transfer students enjoyed at their community colleges and a way to attract and support high-achieving transfer students,” Barbara Simerka, director of The Transfer Honors Program, said.

Students in the program participate in various honors minors on campus including Honors in Social Sciences, Humanities and the Business and Liberal Arts program.

“The program identifies areas where transfer students encounter difficulties and shares that information with campus administration in order to create new policies that will improve the transfer experience for all students,” Simerka said.

Additionally, there are various programs and resources at QC helping incoming transfers transition smoothly from community colleges.

“I’m very proud that, over two years, we have provided funding for nearly 70 students. In many cases, the scholarship funding allows students to enroll full time rather than part time and enables them to graduate within four or five semesters, instead of needing several years,” Simerka said.



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