TCU Frog Camp facilitators Austin Fontanes and Rachel Brenk welcome students, both first-years and transfers, to campus Aug. 13. (Photo courtesy of Rachel Brenk)
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TCU is trying to ensure that transfer students still get the full first-year experience amid the pandemic.

This fall, 443 students transferred to TCU.

“That is 443 new connections that I get to make; 443 new students that I get to help find their place here at TCU,” said Stefan Altheide, the assistant director for Student Development Services (SDS).

Altheide oversees the transfer student experience and manages a variety of programs throughout the semester to engage and connect the students with each other and resources on campus. 

“Virtual hangouts happen every other week,” Altheide said. “It gives them the opportunity to hear that they are not alone and going through something, but that it’s possible to get involved and be successful here.”

Jordan Weaver, a sophomore marketing major and transfer student from the University of San Diego, said switching universities during the pandemic “made the situation harder since the normal activities and events that would be going on are not.”

The Transfer Connection Center in the North Tower of GrandMarc is now limited to just one student at a time due to social distancing guidelines.

“I want to make sure there are other options out there for them,” Altheide said in light of these restrictions placed on the center.

Another transfer student, Harry Denzak, said it has been harder to meet people because of the pandemic.

“Socially, it’s definitely hard to meet people in a pandemic,” said Denzak, a sophomore finance major who transferred from Arizona State University. “I was lucky to already know some people from TCU, but for others, I can see a problem with connecting to other students.”

Altheide said SDS will continue working and innovating to help transfer students adjust to TCU this fall.

“You are part of the TCU family now,” Altheide said. “You’re not just a transfer student, you don’t just fit in that box. There are so many other things that you can do and get involved in.”