How to Get Involved as a Transfer Student

The daunting decision of transferring schools becomes less so after time as a Patriot


A new and fresh start as a transfer student can be an overwhelming but joyous time. Communication majors Reagan Ortiz and Tyson Samuels know this personally, as they call Mason their home after transferring from Towson University and Old Dominion University respectively.

Ortiz, a junior, said she was not as involved in activities on her former university’s campus. So upon coming to Mason, she jumped at any opportunity she could to step out of her comfort zone. Staying involved and attending campus events as an active student eased Ortiz into the transition as a newcomer.

“My biggest tips would be to find what you love, do it [on campus] and find your way off campus whenever possible,” Ortiz said.

No matter what interests a student has, getting involved is as easy as following a passion or favorite pastime with organizations like Student Media, Patriot Activities Council, Ballroom Club and much more.

For Samuels, a senior, the organization-listing website GetConnected was a great resource to find events and know what’s happening on campus. Along with using it, Samuels opened up to his peers and searched for more ways to get involved through word of mouth.

Samuels was also curious and conflicted in his transfer process. It was always in the plan for him to attend Mason, but when his first application was denied, his spirit remained strong.

When it finally came time for Samuels to transfer, the whole process was more stressful and overwhelming than he expected.

“Be open minded about things, and don’t be so scared to talk to people, and ask for help,” are some words of advice Samuels would’ve given himself at the start of his journey at Mason.  

Asking for help from others can add another level of horror to this daunting transition, but there is nothing to lose when seeking help or advice from peers or classmates. Although jitters, fears and worries about a clean slate are inevitable, relinquishing as much of this as possible can help.

There are also plenty of on-campus resources for adjusting to Mason life. The Office of Transfer Services, located in Student Union Building I, provides students with an open space for guidance on transfer requirements and coursework counseling.

Free copies of Freshman Focus, a student-published magazine dedicated to new Patriots, are also available in the Student Media office located in the Hub. Reading material about various campus organizations, potential jobs available on or off campus as well as listicles of some “hot hangout spots” can alleviate many curiosities.

Transfer student transitions are different for everybody. Ortiz and Samuels came to Mason in their own ways, but both found Mason became their new home after coming into the experience with an open heart, unafraid of forging new relationships and strengthening their involvement on campus.