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ND, SMC welcome 36 transfer students

John Paul Witt | Monday, January 22, 2007

By second semester most students have become familiar with life in the Notre Dame- Saint Mary’s community, but for others life under the golden dome is a whole new experience.

Notre Dame welcomed 25 transfer students and Saint Mary’s enrolled 11 – numbers that were on par with the institutions’ transfer expectations, College and University officials said.

Notre Dame Associate Director of Admissions Susan Joyce calls “in line with the University enrollment goal of about 125 fall and 25 spring transfers each year.”

Unlike the freshman admissions process, transfer students at both institutions must meet certain criteria to be admitted. Students must attain at least a 3.00 GPA in college courses, and Notre Dame transfers must attend another institution for at least a full year. And unlike Saint Mary’s, Notre Dame does not accept transfers into the First Year of Studies.

Notre Dame students transferred directly into the Colleges of Arts and Letters, Science, or Engineering, Joyce said. Due to enrollment limitations, the University does not admit transfer students to the Mendoza College of Business, and the School of Architecture has not admitted transfer students in “several years” because of limitations imposed by the architecture program’s required year in Rome, she said.

Students were also challenged to find seats in classes at Notre Dame.

“So many classes are closed now that they have a real problem with that,” Joyce said. “They’ll get something, but it’s probably not the best schedule around.”

“I tell people, the first semester is going to be a little bit of a scavenger hunt, but they will get good counseling about what transfers,” Joyce said.

All Notre Dame transfer students who requested housing were placed into a dorm – something Joyce said is unusual. Of the fall semester’s 147 admitted transfer students, only 60 were granted on-campus accommodations before and during fall semester.

“All fall transfer requests for on-campus accommodations were granted by spring,” she said.

Notre Dame transfer students attended Transfer-O the weekend before classes began – orientation events conducted by 20 upper class students who had transferred in past years.

Joyce stressed the important experience that the orientation leaders brought to the event.

“Who better than those who have been through it to help them make the social and academic transition?” Joyce said.

Notre Dame junior Anne Martell, formerly of the University of Buffalo, said her experience was “amazing, especially because there’s only twenty-five students, so it’s easy to make friends.”

Saint Mary’s transfer students are not provided with a specialized orientation, but are invited to participate in the first-year student summer orientation program if they enter with first-year standing.

Students had few regrets about transferring to Notre Dame.

Junior Danielle Thompson, formerly of the University of Southern California, said she transferred because of Notre Dame’s “religious aspect” and “tradition.”