Transfer out of Dart

Hi. I am a soph at Dart. I hate it. Everything is centered around Greek life and I can not find ppl who aren’t fake. Honestly there is NOTHING to do here. I want to transfer but don’t know how that looks this being my first time in campus since HS. Looking for advice. Also dreading the winter with nothing to do since I will not have Greek life/ any type of social life.

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I’m not sure I understand this. Any college you transfer to is going to be primarily interested in your grades. Very selective colleges will also expect excellent rec letters from professors, as well as campus involvement, etc… Typically, apps to other selective colleges are due by mid-March.

There will be stduents all over the country transferring out who haven’t been on a campus since HS. It’s not an issue.

I guarantee there are people at Dartmouth who are not involved in Greek Life. There will definitely be clubs where members are not focused on that. Not everyone is partying hard all the time. You can volunteer, get involved in a campus religious group, or work at a fun place on campus, like the book store or dining hall where you can meet other people.

If you really can’t handle the thought of a whole year, get the highest grades you can and spend a semester at community college getting very high grades, or transfer to a local public uni and commute for a semester. There’s no shame in that.

Edit: I failed to see that’s you are a soph when I first wrote this, but this is still relevant info.

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Is this the first year you are on campus, due to COVID? Were you home last year doing college virtually? If so, I would give it time. I know that is trite advice, but so many students are unhappy the first few months of residence at college.

Hanover is a great town and I love the whole area, so I am biased. Try to get involved in things on campus and off, and find people who aren’t involved in Greek life if you can. Are there outdoor activities that you like doing?

If it helps you, apply to transfer or make plans for community college or whatever, so you don’t feel trapped, but I would not make a decision until you have given Dartmouth a chance through the spring.

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I should be clear. I have good grades that’s not the issue. I have no friends. Can’t meet anyone who is not obsessed with Greek life or social climbing. School advertised as a chill, collaborative environment but it’s completely not true. Wanting to transfer because of social scene and nothing to do / no town…stuck on campus with no hope.


I was home because of CoVid and I did not do college virtually. I worked at a low paying service industry job as I wanted to have a “normal” college experience. I feel completely isolated here and going into week 5 of 10 week fall term not sure I see any hope. Wouldn’t have any recs, activities or any thing to put on a transfer app. Wondering about how to even do that. All I have is grades.

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I’m sorry you’re in this situation, on top of the pandemic monkey wrench in your college career. Dartmouth is the most “Greek” of all the Ivies, plus it’s in the most rural, remote location. I think that a lot of students who are not interested in Greek life, but want the prestige of an Ivy, fail to consider this when applying.

If you have any religious identification, seek out that group. If you are a sexual minority, seek out that group. If you have any interests other than the “Greek” one (partying), seek out that group. You’ll find like-minded people if you join groups/clubs focuse on any interest other than drinking and drugging in a frat.

Meanwhile, I wholeheartedly agree with the recommendation to throw yourself into your schoolwork and get the highest grades possible. Go to every available office hour and get to know your profs, so you can ask for letters. Can you apply to transfer now, based upon last year’s grades?

I worry that good schools won’t be taking many transfers, because they’re so over-enrolled this year with those who deferred, or upperclassmen who took off a year.


So where was freshman year if this is your second year? We want to help, but not sure I understand the timeline.

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I cannot tell you how many students feel this way in the first months of college, and end up thriving. Try going off campus and getting to know Hanover. Try doing something outdoors:: is there a hiking club? We don’t know your interests so it is hard to make suggestions.

You have just had a traumatic year, as have all of us. Your path in life was disrupted. You probably spent more time with your family so it might have been harder to leave them. Do you think you are homesick?

Are you from a city? I understand Hanover can seem like a small town if you are.

Two out of three of my kids were miserable at this point in their first year on campus. I visited and talked with others in the same state of wanting to leave. It is very common. Some schools, including Harvard, have groups where you can talk about loneliness and ways to cope.

I think it would be a good idea to check in with the counseling service to see if there is a group like that, or if they have suggestions. I cannot tell if you are depressed but for the common misery of loneliness when first on campus, they may also be helpful.


I stayed home and worked at a minimum wage service industry job. I am now on campus and considered a sophomore even tho it’s my first time on campus. Freshman class was given trips, orientation and basics of getting to know college CLASS or 24 (me) was given no intro & no bonding. School completely (IMO) misrepresented all the clubs/ activities to get involved in.

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Remember that little thing called the pandemic that shut down in-person learning, on campus, last year?

You start now. It’s not too late. You’ve had good suggestions here.

You can go to the volunteer center or look for community volunteer opportunities. You can fill out a campus job app. You can ask to meet with a professor to discuss a class. You can see what meetings are offered by the campus chaplaincy. You can set up a session at the campus therapy center. That’s all stuff you can do right now.

And you can also decide to finish the semester and leave. Just keep the grades high. Transfer to a public Uni if you have to. You DON’T have to stay forever and be miserable. There are choices you can make, and being miserable is one of them. Good luck.


Thank you for sharing about your kids experiences. I am lonely however the counseling office is not helpful. Not even kids have signed up for groups to form. So they don’t have much support other then one/ one counselors… I am looking for advice on how to transfer as I am sure winter will be very challenging here. I don’t look anything like the HS lod who applied - no ECS or prof recs

Hmmm…if you deferred entrance, you would be considered the Class of 25, not 24 (at most other colleges that do not take AP Credits). I am surprised they did not include students that deferred in the first year activities unless you misunderstood something in the communication.

Dartmouth does a rotating quarter schedule with groups of kids off and on campus. So my understanding was there was always a shifting of who was doing what with each other and friend groups changing.

It does sound like you are hitting a typical wall for first year college students after being on campus for a month. Give it a little longer to try to go to a few gatherings or things that interest you.

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If one on one is available, can you try that? One of my kids got referred to a group (for chronic heath conditions) only after seeing someone individually. It might help you feel more connected.

Is there no activity on campus that you can participate in?

Once you know your major, often a department can make you feel a sense of belonging.

Winter in Dartmouth is beautiful. You don’t need to ski to enjoy it. Why do you think winter wil be challenging? Are you from a different climate?

Do you miss home, friends and family? Our first experiences in a new place can be so lonely but it is a skill for life to try to endure for a little longer, and learn that things can improve.

If you still feel this way by March, then by all means leave, but I really hope you will try to stay.


Thank you!! Appreciate the support and suggestions. I will look into on campus job and keep grades up. I don’t want to be miserable but I also know I can’t transfer to highly selective college with just good grades. So do I stay and be miserable or move to a CC / less academic school. I was seeking to see ppl who transferred from highly selective colleges to less so and wondered how they did… of course this would all be pre CoVid.

Again, YOU can change that. Easily. You have to start doing and stop thinking.

Yes, if you have to. Because being miserable is not worth it. Ever.


My family lives nearby in Woodstock VT so I know the area really well. I truly believe you can be happy at Dartmouth. The loneliness of first months at college can be unbearable. It gets better. In fact, throughout life there will be times when you are in a new place and lonely and this experience of adjustment will help you in the future.

Please try counseling. They are experienced with new students and will have suggestions. Talk to an advisor as well. There are resources available. And understand that COVID has impacted the way colleges are functioning and that will improve as well.


Again, thank you. I don’t want to be miserable - I just wanted someone on here who has transferred and how they felt afterwards. Yes, only I can change it but the EC/ groups i have gone out for (10 including sports & clubs) have been beyond competitive- not just “sign up” and you can attend. Again- not what school promoted with their EC’s (or the ones I’m interested in) the religious affiliation groups are not really a thing here. Went to a few and only 4-5 kids who were not relatable attended…Again everyone seems to be obsessed with frats and I can’t seem to rally and be fake and to rush the entire process is gross to me. So now that I can see the school is about secret handshakes, school spirit (which I can not relate to) I am not thrilled to be here. I came for the outdoor clubs as well but again not as advertised once I here. I am a social person. Again thanks for your suggestions


Dartmouth has excellent outing clubs…hiking, skiing, etc. These happen year round. There are tons of clubs on the Dartmouth campus. Find something that interests you…and get involved. Go work out at the gym. You will meet people there.

I also don’t understand how someone who deferred enrollment would be considered a second year student. Please explain.


Typically, apps to other selective colleges are due by mid-March.

I am posing the question now as apps are due DEC/ JAN