National Transfer Student Week Assists, Celebrates Transfer Students

by Lauren Provencher / Oct 17, 2020

It’s that time of year again—time to celebrate transfer students. Organized by the National Institute for the Study of Transfer Students (NISTS), National Transfer Student Week (NTSW) will take place October 19-23.

NTSW is dedicated to commending transfer students and those who help them on their academic journey, in order to show that the transfer pathway is valuable in the effort to attain a bachelor’s degree. This year’s theme is “Thriving Through Transfer.”

Given that the number of students transferring between institutions is increasing, additional support to assist these individuals and their diverse needs is more crucial than ever. NISTS aims to instill transfer pride among students and professionals and create greater awareness of transfer barriers through NTSW.

Shared experiences are extremely important in instilling that sense of self-esteem, especially since there is a stigma surrounding transfer students, according to NISTS. One of the most common misunderstandings about transfer students is that they are underprepared to complete bachelor’s-level coursework, though they often perform at standards equal to or above non-transfer students. This line of thinking can cause insecurity among transfer students, so sharing stories within this population can create a sense of community and reduce isolation.

NISTS encourages campuses to engage in three specific actions to increase transfer student success:


This involves illuminating the inherent complexity of transfer processes by sharing student stories and data. NISTS suggests institutions work with their institutional research offices to compile student data and share it publicly via social media and campus newsletters. It also recommends that universities collaborate with their relations offices to publish transfer student stories that highlight diverse experiences throughout NTSW.


The focus here is on holding events and activities that support the transfer student experience by acknowledging this population’s diverse needs and identities. For this facet of NTSW, NISTS suggests campuses foster opportunities for students to interact with each other and faculty and staff through forums or social event. NISTS also suggests collaborating with prominent student organizations to get the word out and host similar events.


This tactic promotes NTSW and enhances inclusivity and conversations. Universities can create buttons or stickers that say “I’m a Transfer Student” or “I was a Transfer Student” to showcase shared experiences and increase transfer unity. NISTS also recommends holding giveaways solely for transfer students, with items that may include university-branded stickers, pennants, or T-shirts.

Every day throughout National Transfer Student Week, CollegeSource will host the third annual Transfer Week Webinar Series, which offers free presentations and panels that feature higher education professionals who discuss transfer topics. This year, for the first time, participants will be able to network and learn from colleagues in small breakout sessions. The webinar series will offer the following presentations:

  • Thriving in Transfer: Recruitment, Admissions Advising, Student Support
  • Panel: Policies and Processes
  • Solving Stranded Credits
  • Panel: Awarding Credit and Applicability
  • Articulation Agreements and Pathways
  • Supporting Student Success: The Transfer Student Bill of Rights

If you know a transfer student or individuals in higher education who place great importance on the transfer process, please spread the word about National Transfer Student Week, and make sure to register for the above webinars!