How can I improve my chances of getting accepted as a transfer?

I am currently a first-year student (technically a sophomore) at a four-year public university. I’m looking at Rice University, UNC, University of Southern California, and Notre Dame, which I realize are crazy hard to get into. I am motivated and desperate though because simply put, I hate the school I attend. I get full tuition paid for, but I can’t get over the fact that I just hate everything about it. It’s just not for me. It was my safety school my senior year, and I got rejected by a lot of top schools, which I should have realize were way out of my reach. I didn’t think going to my safety school would be bad, but experiencing it as a student there could not have gone worse.

High School:
Couple ECs including Student Council secretary, Tutor, NHS, SADD, Cross Country, Book Club, and Track
Ranked 2/118
Don’t remember GPA
ACT 32
SAT Writing 800, SAT Reading 680, SAT Math 750
SAT Subject Math II 790, SAT Subject US History 790
AP US History (5), Calculus BC (5), US Government (5), English Language (5), Statistics (5), Microeconomics (4), English Literature (4), Environmental Science (4)
Worked at a restaurant as a busboy
Interned with a lawyer

Math & Stats / Information Systems double major
Calculus III (A), Probability (A), Physics (A), Physics Lab (A+), Business 101 (A-)
3.93 GPA (I’m really going to try harder next semester to get a 4.0)
I came in with 35 credit hours, last semester I took 14, next semester I’m taking 17
Information Systems and Analytics Club treasurer, Green Team member, Optimist Club (volunteer) member, Actuarial Science Club member
I’m going to try to do Habitat for Humanity to get more service hours

I want to transfer so bad, and I can’t transfer to a school that is mediocre or only above average academically because I’m going to have to pay so much more to attend whatever school I go to so I want to make transferring worth it by going to a top school. By the way this is my first time applying to these schools. What kinds of things can I do to really improve my chances of transferring to these very exclusive schools? I’m talking about specific suggestions. Thank you in advance! :slight_smile:

Also I’m going to try to get another leadership position in either the Actuarial Science Club or the Optimist Club. Thanks again! :slight_smile:

Honestly, everything looks pretty good. Your college rigor and resulting grades are really impressive. At the schools you’re interested in, your HS record is important as well and it looks like you have an impressive HS record too. Wish you remembered your GPA though, because colleges will look at that too (obviously) and it would help me better match you to some schools.
To me, it looks like you can handle the coursework and seem like a pretty impressive applicant all around. Just make sure you write really good supplement essays and get great teacher recs (should a school require one).

@camover I think my unweighted GPA was somewhere between 3.8 and 3.9 while my weighted GPA was 4.27. Not the best, but that’s why I tried to do really well in college and am continuing to do so. I think I can get a really good teacher recommendation from my stats teacher. I was one of the only two freshmen in his class and he really liked me, plus I’m in the Actuarial Science club in which he is an advisor. Also, thanks so much for your feedback!

You sound like you have a really good shot. Most top colleges consider 3.7-3.8 competitive so your GPA is pretty impressive (especially with the classwork).
Just did a quick check, Rice admits 17% of transfers, USC admits 29%, UNC admits 39%, and Notre Dame admits 25%. I think you’re probably at the top of the pool. Just perfect your apps and you’ll probably get in to a couple of them.

@camover Thanks again! Yeah, I’ll make sure to spend a lot of time on those applications!


What is your plan if you aren’t admitted anywhere with enough aid to make it affordable? You need to think that through, and run the numbers by your parents and/or whoever else would be helping you pay for your education.

@happymomof1 If I don’t get admitted anywhere I’m probably just going to stick it out at my current university unfortunately. With my credits I can graduate early and I guess that would be it. I wouldn’t like it, but that’s what would have to happen given the circumstances.

With your gpa and courseload you could probably get into top 20 schools for sure. So I think that is within your range.

@1sttimetransfer Thank you for your feedback. Yeah, I really hope I get accepted to at least one of my schools. Rice would be nice but I’d be grateful getting into any one of them.


I got accepted to all the schools I applied to. Yay. Believe me. If I can, anyone can.