Thinking about transferring? Here’s 3 tips

Parth Upadhyaya,

The UNC campus. Photo by the News & Observer

It feels like freshman year 2.0. Attending convocation, walking around campus with Google Maps pulled up on my iPhone, trying to navigate my way to classes.

I spent the first two years of my undergraduate career at N.C. State but decided to transfer to UNC-Chapel Hill for a number of reasons. (Growing up a die-hard Carolina basketball fan definitely influenced my decision, but there was obviously more than just that.)

Coming out of high school, I thought I wanted to study engineering, which kept me from even applying to UNC. However, after just a few months at N.C. State, I realized that engineering simply wasn’t my passion.

Being a huge sports fan, I searched for ways to incorporate my love of sports into a field of study and future career. At the end of my freshman year at NC State, I joined Technician (NC State’s student newspaper) as a sports writer.

I’d always been intrigued by the idea of working in sports media, and joining the Technician sports staff opened me up to that world in a new way. As I further looked into how to break into the field, I realized that a journalism degree would be valuable — and I knew UNC had one of the best journalism schools in the nation.

But I wanted to be sure I was making the right decision before switching both majors (I was a business administration major at N.C. State) and universities. So I took a sports journalism class at UNC’s journalism school last fall (while still enrolled as a full-time student at NC State).

Through the course, I filmed athletic events and interviewed athletes at UNC and learned how to edit my footage. I fell in love with everything the School of Media and Journalism at UNC had to offer.

Although it was a tough decision, I ultimately knew I wanted to be at UNC. Thankfully, I was admitted to UNC and am finally able to call myself a Tar Heel this fall!

If you’re considering transferring schools, here are a few things you should do:

If possible, take a class at the university you’re looking at transferring to.
One of the biggest things that helped confirm that I wanted to transfer was taking a course at UNC’s journalism school. In summer 2016, I reached out to Dr. Charlie Tuggle (a senior associate dean in the journalism school) to find out more about the program. He recommended I take the sports journalism course, which he teaches. I was able to see what life would be like as a sports reporter, which was huge in helping me make my decision.

Check to see how many of your credits will transfer.
For me, this was tough. I already knew some of my general education courses from freshman year would not transfer over by looking at UNC and N.C. State’s course equivalency sites. Unfortunately, some of my business administration courses also didn’t transfer over. I ended up losing 16 of the 60 total credits I’d taken while at N.C. State.

You can search N.C. State’s course equivalencies here and UNC’s course equivalencies here. Want to learn more about transferring credits from another school? Google your school’s name + “course equivalency site.”

If possible, spend a weekend with friends at the school you’re looking to transfer to.
I was lucky to have a close friend who also transferred to UNC from N.C. State a year before I did. Through him, I got the scoop on how UNC was different from N.C. State, and I also got to spend some time on campus. Some of the best times I really got a feel for the culture in Chapel Hill came when I spent the night at my friend’s dorm after the UNC vs. Duke basketball game and the night the Tar Heels won the national championship.


Parth Upadhyaya writes for, where this article originally ran.