Whatcom’s transfer students “fair” well

Quarterly fairs help students navigate options for completing four-year degrees.

According to the Whatcom Community College website, 79 percent of the student body is attending Whatcom for transfer degrees. To support those students, a quarterly Transfer Fair is held on campus where a multitude of major schools visit Whatcom.

The transfer fairs give students “a great opportunity to connect with admission counselors from a wide variety of Washington public and private four year colleges and universities,” said Sharon Link, Career and Academic Advisor.

“The schools come to us, so it saves students time and expense in going to visit. They’re able to get on the spot information, and do their research. It’s never too early to start doing that.”

“Everyone is really great at informing about credits needed,” said Nathan Cowley, an electrical engineering student. Transfer advisors are “expanding on getting Western departmental advisors to come over for visits,” said Link.

Link mentions that Western Washington University departmental advisors are enjoying visiting Whatcom on a quarterly basis, to talk one-on-one with students in the Career and Transfer Center, and that “it’s working to be a good partnership.”

A Career and Academic Advisor Jordan Keithley said, “the depth of classes tend to go up once they’re done with their associate’s degree,” on explaining a reason students decide to transfer.

“As a community college, we can only offer 100 to 200 level courses, so if a student wants to go in depth with a subject, the way to continue that education is at the university level.” 

“The advantage of meeting an advisor when they’re here on campus establishes a relationship. Then you have a connection within the university and that helps keep stress levels low,” said Link.

Transfer fairs are not the only transfer resources to be held on campus.

“For years, Western has come and done a personal statement workshop, for the transfer application. We have transfer application workshops, so students don’t have to try and figure out how to do it on their own,” said Link.

The next Western personal statement workshop, which is a chance for students to ask questions and have assistance in how to write the statement that many colleges require in an application, will be held on Nov. 13 at 4 p.m. in Cascade Hall 111.

University of Washington will be putting on a webinar on Nov. 4 at 4 p.m. in Laidlaw Center 124 for Whatcom students to sit and electronically ask questions to their admission counselors.

Two university transfer application workshops will be held on Nov. 6, at 2 p.m., and Nov. 7, at 11 a.m in the Career and Transfer Center located in Laidlaw Center 118.

“We’re looking into hosting an event on online bachelor’s degree programs, where students can learn more about online options to completing their degree,” said Keithley.

The online degree information event is being planned for winter quarter to discuss options for students who don’t want to attend Western, and do not have the option to move out of Bellingham. A date is yet to be announced.


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