In 2017, the National Institute for the Study of Transfer Students (NISTS) organized the first National Transfer Student Week. During the third week of October, institutions across the United States are encouraged to celebrate transfer students and the people that support them. This year, CollegeSource decided to participate and share some of our experiences. What you might not know is that many people on the CollegeSource team previously worked in institutions of higher education. In fact, we have more than 245 combined years of experience in previous roles in Higher Ed. A primary reason we created a Transfer Week Webinar Series to take place during National Transfer Student Week was to share our experiences, and provide a platform for users in our community to discuss this important topic. After all, the mission of CollegeSource is: “Maximizing human potential by expanding awareness of educational and career opportunities”
Each day of Transfer Week, we had an expert in the field of transfer, paired with a CollegeSource team member, speak for an hour on a designated transfer topic. I was fortunate to host two of the five sessions, “Best Practices in Transfer Evaluation” and “Pathways and Articulation Agreements,” and the experience was amazing. The “Best Practices in Transfer Evaluation” was the largest webinar CollegeSource has ever hosted and the most people I have ever spoken to at once! I really had to overcome my public speaking fears, though the fact it was an online discussion helped. That webinar had more than 600 registered and 375 participants actually attended live, with many submitting questions and creating fruitful dialogue on how to help students during their transfer journeys. My co-host Sarah Hatfield and I spoke about the best practices in the evaluation of transfer credits. It was great to be able to share experiences from two different methods of evaluating transfer credit.
The feedback was fantastic.
“Thank you for the webinar yesterday… it was simple, to-the-point and very helpful! We had many ‘Ah-ha’ moments during the presentation 😊. We also really liked the polling feature and will be analyzing the results as a team!”
—Ritu Sachdev, Marquette University
“Thank you! The recording will be great for my co-workers that were unable to listen.”
—Allison Swenson, Eastern Washington University
“Listening and Learning. Thank you CollegeSource for the free webinar series during National
#TransferStudentWeek! Be Transparent, Get Feedback!”
—Lorena Márquez, Cal Poly Pomona (via Twitter)
Although we didn’t get a chance to tackle every question during the live webinar, Sarah and I responded individually to each person who submitted a question or comment. One of the hardest parts about hosting a webinar with so many attendees is that it’s hard to gauge reactions. The follow-up emails showed that what we presented had really inspired our audience. We helped one user come up with a creative solution to deal with a staffing shortage by offering an internship option for students at her institution to support the evaluation and data entry of transfer credit evaluations—this a great idea and I had to share!
The other sessions in the week focused on “Transfer Students and Institution Bill of Rights,” “Statewide Transfer Portals: A Competitive Analysis,” and “Advancing Reverse Transfer and Transfer Pathways Through Data Mining.” These were very thought-provoking sessions and I highly recommend checking them out.
All webinar recordings and supplemental materials like slides, transcripts, and handouts are available at collegesource.com/transfer-week.
Thank you again to all of our presenters and attendees who helped make this week a success. As our CEO Kerry Cooper likes to say, “Teamwork makes the dream work.”