Why I Transferred Colleges After One Semester

By Emily Bernard

Wow, okay. What a school year it has been. I finished all of my finals (solely by the grace of God), and as I’m posting this I just got out of my last class of the semester. Hallelujah! Looking back over this whole year, it’s been a whirlwind to say the least. In just my first year of college, I’ve gone to two different colleges and had two completely different experiences.

I started my college journey at a Bible college near my home in Pennsylvania. I had a lot of friends there, it was close to home, it was a small campus, and it was safe. Now, there is nothing wrong with any of those things, and I went there thinking I wanted all of that. So, when I arrived as the eager little freshman I was, I immediately got involved on campus and saw that college life is pretty neat.

But by the end of my first semester, I realized that I had spent those last few months only convincing myself and others that I was happy there. I desperately craved a new environment. I longed for a place far from my small hometown; a place that was filled with more diversity and less agriculture. At that point I had a (not-so) mini breakdown and questioned everything I was doing with my life. I made numerous pros-and-cons lists that helped some, but when it came down to it, I knew that I didn’t want to be where I was, and I didn’t know where to go from there.

So this is where things started getting crazy.

The month of December is a long story, but, basically, I got accepted to a new university 4 days before the beginning of the spring semester. I wish I could go into detail of that crazy experience, but for your sake I’ll keep going. So I had 4 days to transfer, meaning I had 4 days to drop out of my last college, get housing for this new school, get my class schedule, move out of my old room, and move into a new college 6 hours away. Did it seem crazy? Yes. Did everyone think I was being spontaneous and a little irrational? I didn’t ask, but yeah probably.

Guys, that spontaneous, dramatic decision to transfer colleges in my freshman year was one of the best decisions I have ever made thus far in my life. I am now at a university that I absolutely love. It is bigger, has a more diverse student body, has a more established program for my major, and the level of community is unmatched. I have learned more about myself, about people, and about God than I ever imagined I would. Like I said, the decision to come here was on the edge of irrational, so I had no idea that I would fit in so well as a part of this campus.

There are many more crazy details as to why I went to two different colleges in my first two semesters, but I will tell you this: since that one crazy decision to transfer last minute, I have found myself becoming more adventurous and confident in everyday decisions. I never thought I’d be as lost as I was in December, but God is faithful. And I never would have imagined myself living in Virginia, but now I say “ya’ll” all the time and I think that’s pretty cool.

Anyway, I wanted to share my story with you as my way of saying that it’s okay to not have it all figured out, it’s okay to change your mind, and it’s okay to take a leap of faith that will change your life. This year has been challenging beyond belief, but more rewarding then I can explain through one blog post.

Much love for you all!

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