For some students, transfer center isn’t a luxury; it’s a neccessity


(Scott Baba / The Inquirer)

Limited course offerings, cut programs, $66 per unit and, now, no Transfer Center.

Due to budget reductions, the center’s summer hours will be eliminated and it will completely close in the fall semester.

As of June 30, the Transfer Center’s senior office assistant, Marcia Perata, will be laid off. Also, the center’s interim coordinator position, currently held by Bianca Estrella, will be put “on-hold” until an unknown future date.

In these times of financial instability, the recent reductions are turning the community college into mainly a transfer institution. So, students need the tools and services necessary for successful transfer now more than ever.

Gov. Jerry Brown prioritized “course offerings needed for transfer” in the overview of his proposal published on California Community College Chancellor’s Office website.

Of course, there is transfer information on the Internet; however, some students may need help finding the correct information.

In fact, so many students have trouble navigating the Web, the Foundation for California Community Colleges has been focusing on California Connects, a program which is trying to close the apparent digital literacy problem in community colleges.

Some four-year institutions have centers that deal with transfer students; however, students shouldn’t have to make the trek to the Transfer Center on the UC Berkeley campus to get detailed information on how to transfer there.

To combat the Transfer Center’s elimination, the counseling department is proposing a plan to organize its staff in order to elevate the center’s duties.

Piling more work onto a diminished amount of people is not going to solve our problems; it will probably lead to the transfer process becoming more and more impersonal.  

The Transfer Center makes the transferring process personal; students need an environment of readily-available transfer information instead a page of links.

Students can get brochures and important information about UCs, CSUs, private colleges and other institutions both inside and outside of California.

Also, the Transfer Center is the hub for meeting and lecturers from college representatives.

In fact, the Transfer Center hosted meetings with representatives from UC Berkeley, UC Los Angeles, Academy of Art University, Golden Gate University and Saint Mary’s, just to name a few.

The Transfer Center staff can sit down with students and help them complete any online application.

They also provide one-on-one conversations about matriculation and other details such as transfer, graduation or major requirements.

Further, a New York Times article stated transfer students need to be aware of course requirements since “colleges won’t give the official word on what [courses] they will accept until they have an enrollment deposit in hand.”

The same article quotes a University of Michigan assistant professor urging community college students to talk to some sort of counselor and get a “second opinion.”

In short, the Transfer Center provides the preparation students need. Take a look at the CSUs,  for example.

Even though CSUs accepted spring transfers for 2011, the system is facing a billion dollars cut from the state, according to a San Francisco Chronicle article.

The same article said that CSU Chancellor Charles Reed suggested that tuition be raised 32 percent and spring enrollment be closed.

If students are faced with only applying in fall for universities like CSUs, they need to be better equipped and knowledgeable for applications and transfer.  

There are no arguments and little alternatives.

Simply put: DVC students need a Transfer Center.