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Adjusting to Briar Cliff from a Community College

February 5, 2019 | by Asi Tupua


Students transferring to Briar Cliff University from two year institutions find new experiences in everything.


Students coming from two year institutions find new and diverse experiences when transferring to Briar Cliff University. Students come from far and wide, but they all have one thing in common, they all have to adjust to a new lifestyle.


Erin Small, director of new student programs, interacts with new students at Briar Cliff year-round. Her team try and create a positive and welcoming experience and do their best to help students adjust and find a new community. Small’s goal is to make sure students graduate and have a fun interactive experience along with it.


Small also understands the difficulties when advising new students. “At BCU specifically, we see issues with getting all the necessary transcripts in. Students are used to taking online classes or classes where attendance aren’t closely monitored.” said Small. Many students take longer to adjust and uncertainty takes a toll. Some student athletes face eligibility issues which results “in them feeling disconnected from the reason they came in the first place.” said Small.


Student development does a lot of social events to help students struggling socially and academically to relieve stress and connect with others. Briar Cliff does a good job of creating an environment where people from different backgrounds and cultures can find a way to connect.


Ben Pigg, a transfer baseball player from Sacramento, California has found his transition to be good. He previously attended Santa Rosa Community College in Santa Rosa, California. “It was a great experience, sports wise, very good team, very good coach.” said Pigg. Pigg finds no trouble in keeping his academics in check. “Honestly academics were pretty hard, harder than Briar Cliff’s”.


Dylan Speer, native from Ione, California, is another transfer baseball player who previously attended Modesto Junior college in Modesto, California. Like Pigg he has adjusted well to the new life style. He believes his two years in junior college allowed him to mature as a student athlete. “it taught me what it’s like to be a college athlete before you get to a University.” said Speer. “Overall it was a good learning experience, it put me in a good place before I even left home.”


Both transfer students have acknowledged the University’s attempt to have students interact with different people whether it’s outside of their friend circle or sports team. “I’ve gotten to know the football players pretty well, you wouldn’t get that experience if you lived off campus.” said Pigg. Speer enjoys meeting new students from different parts of the country. “It’s definitely been a great experience, you meet a lot of people out of your sport and people from all over the country. That’s one of the things that makes Briar Cliff a great place, you get to share the struggle of being a college student with everyone.” said Speer.


JUCO students adjust to their new life at a four-year institution.

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