Transfer Student seeking Advice


<p>Last year I chose to accept a very generous scholarship to a local university rather than leave state. Yet after being there for a nearly 2 months I feel completly different; the student body is apathetic (most are commuters and frankly just want to get their degree and leave) and I feel like the current program isn't right for me (I'm doing BME and I really hate the lack of core science classes/focus on biosensors). </p>

<p>So I'm thinking about transferring another university and hopefully will find a better match; My current list is Stanford (Has the Bioinfromatic focus I want), Upenn (established BME program/recently built a new wing), U.Chicago (Doesn't offer BME but offers excellent Biophysics) and Northwestern (Great BME/Nanotech departments). My only concern is that m HS statistics aren't "that" impressive compared to other students. I had poor froshie years and even though I improved drastically my junior/seniors years and got a 1560, I'm still worried colleges will weight my HS transcript well over my college transcript. </p>

<p>Right now Im taking roughly 18 hours of Engineering and if all goes well I'll have an 3.7-4.0 at the end of the semester. I really want to transfer as a sophie (I can't imagne spending another year here) and would like advice/suggestions on any course of action i should take.</p>


<p>I think your GPa for this semester will be crucial--showing tht you excel in classroom work. That will help erase the poor HS frosh year. Get involved in something that will make you stand out; are there any research opportunities you can take part in at your school? When you apply, pinpoint things that are lacking in the school you're at which do not denigrate the school itself or the people there--an area of focus, a particular program or professor that's at the intended school, etc. Don't say that the rest of the students are boring or apathetic (though you can say that many don't have the same academic aims you do--if that's true.) The best way to look attractive to another school is to throw yourself into the one you're at.</p>

<p>thanks Garland, I'll work hard to build up my GPA and involve myself around campus. Overall, do I essentially need a 4.0 to be competitive or do I have some leeway?</p>

<p>I don't imagine that you will need a 4.0. In reality many engineering students don't have 4.0 GPAs.<br>
I did the opposite of what you are doing. I left an elite engineering program with a 2.0 to go to a state school where most students are commuters, and many engineering students in my classes are more concerned with simply getting a degree rather than learning the fundamentals that are required to do well in the courses. I have a 3.51 since I was able to learn better in the different environment. And the professors make more of an effort to make sure students understand the material. </p>

<p>However, I do sometimes wish I was back at my first school. But I am getting more opportunities (good grades, research project, internship) at my current school.</p>

<p>I understand your perspective Justin; for me my current BME program isn't really flexibile and doesn't really offer the education I want out of it. If you don't mind me asking, where did you transfer out of and what engineering were you doing?</p>

<p>Transfered out of Cornell University. I did computer science for three semesters and switched to mechanical engineering in my final semester but didn't do so well. I re-started mechanical engineering at the new college and doing well. At Cornell you need good grades in MechE courses before being accepted into the program. At my current school the requirements are different so even though I didn't equal Cornell's standards I was accepted into the MechE program here immediately. I won't bother saying where I transfered to because that would pretty much give away my identity.</p>

<p>Why am I doing so well now? Basically because I didn't understand anything at Cornell. Nothing clicked and I simply spent my time trying to finish problem sets rather than learning the fundamentals. Cornell is fast-paced and students are expected to learn topics quickly without much difficulty. At my current school the pace is slower (some one semester courses at Cornell at offered as two separate courses here) and so far the profs take more of an interest in making sure students understand the topics. So now when I study real hard I get 80-100% on exams. At Cornell I had to study real hard just to get a 60%. </p>

<p>Computer science: Simply never should have chosen that. I don't have the kind of mind it takes to learn complicated programming. My sophomore year I had to write a compiler. I was clueless and my partner ended up writing most of it. He never talked to me again after that semester.</p>