Chances for USC Transfer

Hey guys! I am currently a freshman at VT and I intend to transfer to USC next fall as Applied and Computational Math major. I so far completed 19 credits and finished with a 3.94 GPA. I also have 38 credits transferred over from high school if that will have any significance. I am currently taking 17 credits this spring semester and I will have met all the required and recommended courses for my desired major by then.

As a high school student, I had a mix of As and Bs and finished with a 4.22 GPA. My SAT was a 1470 (M: 760, RW: 710) and my Math 2 Subject Test was a 750.

I would say my extracurriculars are pretty good because I continuously stayed involved in the area I wish to pursue. I have over 700+ volunteer hours from helping out in medical centers, American Red Cross, and other organizations to provide health safety. I volunteered in a veterans hospital in DC over the summer for four years where I spent time at the ER, OR, and Pharmacy and also gave back service to our veterans. I also volunteered at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center where I helped my Occupational Therapy supervisor find useful technology for disabled soldiers. I also performed research in the 2019 summer where I primarily focused on Calcium signaling.

In my essays, I emphasized my goals to use data analytics in healthcare and what I hope to do and achieve at USC. For my recommendations, I asked my high school teacher from senior year instead of a professor because remote learning severely limited my relationships with them. I also asked another recommendation from one my supervisors at the veterans hospital. I don’t think USC really cares about recs since its optional but I still sent them incase if they’re helpful.

Will I have a good shot at USC to attend as a sophomore next fall? Appreciate any input!

Is it affordable? They have very expensive tuition. Transfers don’t get too much aid.

They are very specific to ”fit”. You have to “fit” the current class that you will join.

Did you complete the general education requirements?

Your high school AP credits will be considered general electives. It’s the college coursework they will review thoroughly.

I am aware of tuition and my parents are willing to generously pay for most of my tuition. I also understand USC caters towards a certain fit, and I feel like I would be better in USC’s atmosphere than Virginia Tech.

I may have completed around 2 GE requirements, maybe 3-4 if USC accepts my AP credit to transfer. I already also met the required courses needed to transfer For the major I applied (Computational and Applied Math), I will have met all the recommended courses by the end of spring semester. I have completed Calc 2 and Physics last semester and I am currently taking Linear Algebra and Multivar. I received an A in Calc 2 and an A- in Physics.

I prioritized meeting the recommended coursework because in the USC brochure, it said that competitive applicants for Dornsife should make progress for their recommended courses.

Do you think I have good shot at a USC transfer based off a snapshot of my application?

Difficult to say how your chances will go because it depends on what they need; for instance, if they need a tuba player for the parade band, then that’s what they will be noting in the apps. With the pandemic, we don’t know how the universities will respond.

(For instance, if they really want current feedback and If you’ve sent recommendations, and they weren’t from your current university, then they may question why those weren’t sent.)
My sister attended USC and was in the band. This was apparently a strength in her application.

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Appreciate the advise!

I also spoke with my admissions counselor beforehand and she said it is totally fine to ask my Calc teacher from HS in my senior year. I thought it would be best to ask my HS teacher since she has a better understanding of myself in an academic environment. Though I performed well academically last fall semester, virtual learning forced limited interactions and made it difficult to develop close relationships with professors.

Since I plan to pursue data analytics in healthcare, I wonder if there might be a greater need for health bc of the pandemic.

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I believe you have a very good chance to transfer as long as you maintain the high 3.9+ gpa. To transfer to USC, it is very important to have a high gpa (the average is 3.7+ for transfers) and to fulfill USC’s writing and math (which you obviously done as a math major) requirements. My Son transferred to USC after spending 1 year at a UC with a 3.94 gpa. It was a little tricky converting units from a UC quarter system to USC’s semester system. He is about to graduate with Phi Beta Kappa honors from USC. Despite his near perfect gpa, he was offered no merit scholarships even though he applied for several. Be prepared to pay high costs if you are not awarded any scholarships.


Thank you so much for the input! If I may ask, did your son receive an Spring Grade Request or did he get into USC without one?

@DonnieAzoff18 : He did not receive a Spring Grade request. Otherwise, with Spring Quarter ending June 15, he would not have heard until as late as July. As soon as my son finished his Winter Quarter (around March 15) and when the unofficial grades were posted, he sent them in asap with a note that official transcripts to come. He was accepted around April 30th/May 1st or early May. His UC freshman friend, with slightly a higher gpa (3.96) applied to USC with the same results by sending in his Winter Quarter grades asap. This friend also applied to the University of Michigan and was accepted earlier than at USC. He chose USC.

One thing to kept in mind is that if the Fall Semester is on campus and not virtual, you should seriously consider applying for housing as soon as you can. Freshmen and continuing sophomores have higher priorities for USC housing than transfers, even sophomore transfers. Before the pandemic, there was a very high demand for very limited USC housing. If not USC housing, start looking early for the private housing near campus.

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Also, if you are currently on a semester system, you might get a spring grade request which can delay a decision into July. USC likes to look at a trend and maybe one semester is not enough. As soon as you know your grades, send them in asap even though they might not be official grade.

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The question now is…why? You already have an affordable school you’re obviously thriving in. If it’s about atmosphere, 2500 miles is a long way to travel just for that, especially when you’re paying 5 times the tuition for a bachelors degree. Health and financial are good reasons to transfer. Prestige is not. If you can afford an exotic school right now, that might not be true in 1-2 years. You lose credits transferring, and if the worst happens, you lose credits transferring back…without parents funds…and you run out of financial aid too. Believe it or not, that’s not uncommon. My advice, don’t fix what isn’t broken, unless you want to risk breaking something else.

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I have a couple personal and academic reasons as to why I wish to attend USC. The health resources are limited for the pathway I wish to pursue. Since Virginia Tech is located in a rural college town, it is very difficult to pursue medical research and health opportunities in the area. The community at VT was not a place I was comfortable in and felt very much like high school over again since majority of students in my area go there. VT also places a heavy emphasis in their Engineering department while other departments like health studies are weaker. Whereas USC, being situated in a metropolitan area will help me tremendously in volunteering in hospitals and partaking in medical research. USC also has a very strong data science department and health studies program. I am also grateful for my parents to help pay for my tuition.

I am also applying to UVA since it is in-state and also has strong health programs. USC is my top choice though because the opportunities and location is unmatched and this university would best help me reach my aspirations.

Alright I will keep this in mind if I get admissions into USC. Thank you so much for the advice and input!

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