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“We Love Our Transfer Knights” Campaign Highlights Resources Available for Transfer Students at Rutgers University–New Brunswick

Bloustein Meet and Greet

At college campuses across the country, transfer students, or students who unenroll from one school to enroll at another, often deal with many issues, including a lack of social connections, little familiarity with campus, and difficulties accessing student resources.

To build connections between transfer students and help promote on-campus resources, Student Orientation and Transition Programs, a department in the Division of Student Affairs working in partnership with campus stakeholders, led Rutgers—New Brunswick efforts for National Transfer Student Week from October 17th to 21st, with a “We Love Our Transfer Knights” campaign featuring pop-up tents, socials, information sessions, mixers, and more.

Asia Marche, Alicia Nesser, Nia Abdullah, Christina Torian, Caitlin Uriarte enjoy the Bloustein School Transfer Student Mixer
Students and staff pose for a picture at the Bloustein School Transfer Student Mixer. From L-R: Asia Marche, Alicia Nesser, Nia Abdullah, Christina Torian, Caitlin Uriarte

“National Student Transfer Week celebrates all Rutgers transfers and the professionals who support them, provides opportunities for them to gather in community, and connects them to resources that support their academic, personal, and professional success,” said Ghada Endick, associate director of Student Orientation and Transition Programs. 

“On top of events and workshops from campus partners focused on getting involved with student organizations, research, Greek life, study abroad, and more, the week also included a social media campaign that highlighted transfer tips for success and a senior year academic checklist to prepare for graduation,” Endick added. 

For Rutgers transfer students, however, the process of transitioning to Rutgers begins before they ever begin their first class. In the summer before the fall semester, a dedicated team of Orientation Leaders (OLs) serve as their personal guide, introduce them to resources, and get them excited to be a Scarlet Knight. 

In their subsequent semesters at Rutgers, many transfer students consult academic advisors who assist them in creating an academic plan, visit Career Exploration Services to consider post-graduation options, complete tutoring sessions for especially difficult classes at the Learning Centers, or access other important resources like One-Stop Services Center, Student Health, or Student Success

However, while these resources are essential for transfer students, the people who directly impact their experiences at Rutgers on a one-to-one level are often just as important to their successful transitions. As part of the “We Love Our Transfer Knights” campaign, many of those folks were nominated by students as 2022 Scarlet Knight Champions

“Dean White is so upbeat, kind, and caring to every student that comes her way,” said Alexa Scala, a transfer student who also participated in the TARGET program that Candiece White, assistant dean at Rutgers School of Engineering, previously ran for middle- and high-school students. 

“The TARGET program was the start of my engineering career. She changed my life, and now I want to build and create inventions to change other peoples’ lives.” 

For other transfer students, however, the kindness and understanding of faculty members has been what stands out to them, not just the work of staff and other students. 

“He goes above and beyond to provide help and resources for transfers and commuting student circumstances,” said an anonymous transfer student about Jason Grabosky, a faculty member in Ecology Evolution and Natural Resources.

“He has been so helpful with making me feel comfortable and successful in beginning my Rutgers undergraduate studies and is an example of a person who you can look up to and lean on for help!” 

Endick, for her part, also highlighted the importance of this recognition for both the nominator and the nominee at Rutgers. 

“Recognition programs are so important at a large, complex place like Rutgers, where you might not realize the tremendous impact you are making on a student’s experience,” she said. “Plus, on the flip side, it is just as important for a student nominator to be able express meaningful gratitude, which offers them many psychological and emotional health benefits.” 

This is especially true for members like Grabosky and White, who would not otherwise think that they had done anything special. 

“I ask folks if they are okay when we meet, and I try to enable students to have a voice and agency in the conversation that is our classroom dialogue,” Grabosky said. “When faced with challenges, I attempt to help or suggest options after listening. Really, it’s nothing special.” 

White echoed Grabosky’s thoughts. 

“I was very surprised by my nomination,” she said. “My goal each day is just to provide the best support I can for the students.”

Grabosky also highlighted things that Rutgers could do to continue to improve the experiences of transfer and commuting students, such as providing more access to online classes, enabling building access for commuting students, and investing in more resources for commuting and transfer students.

In the meantime, though, Student Orientation and Transition department ensures that transfer students have all the resources they need to succeed—with campaigns like “We Love Our Transfer Knights” at the heart of that work.

“A critical function of our department is to create opportunities for all students to thrive and be retained at Rutgers,” said Endick. “Our campaign makes a small contribution to the great work being done all across the university.”

Salome Siradze, Aditi Tyagi, Rosemary Genoa, Michael Doherty, Marck Molina sit in a ball pit at the Residence Life Transfer Social
Resident Assistants (RAs) and Residence Life staff pose for a photo at Livingston Campus — Residence Life Transfer Social. From L-R: Salome Siradze, Aditi Tyagi, Rosemary Genoa, Michael Doherty, Marck Molina

Student Orientation and Transition Programs is located in the Livingston Student Center. For more information on their work and programs, visit their website.