TNE Editor
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Smart Choice Transfer eases student transitions

Published 1/31/19

Roxanne Grabe

TNE Writer

After a student receives their associate’s degree, they either choose to go out into the world to search for a job or they can continue their education at a four year university to reach further for a bachelor’s degree. NSU has worked together with multiple two year colleges and universities to help those students have an easier time of transitioning from earning an associate’s degree to receiving a bachelor’s degree in the program of their choice.

Transfer Student Services created a program in 2008 called Smart Choice. This program is a partnership between NSU and two-year colleges such as Carl Albert State College, Connors State College, Eastern Oklahoma State College, Northeastern Oklahoma A&M and Tulsa Community College. It serves as a way for students who are finishing their associate’s degree to transfer to NSU to complete a four year degree and to support the long-range goal of increasing the number of Oklahoma citizens with a four year degree.

NSU and CASC entered this partnership in November of 2010. This program promises both the faculty and staff at both universities work together to help students achieve an easy transition from CASC to NSU.

“They make the transferring process seem less scary and their goals more achievable because they have a tangible plan laid out in front of them,” said Rachel Johnson, CASC Career and Transfer Center coordinator. “We invite NSU transfer recruiters to our campus to visit with students and expose them to the idea of transferring to NSU. We advertise events like RiverHawk Rally, RiverHawk Jam and transfer scholarship deadlines in our Career and Transfer Center and through email.”

Roughly 50 percent of NSU’s students on all three campuses are transfer students from other colleges. Some of these students are coming from colleges that have only one to two buildings at most on their campus and transferring to a larger campus like NSU can be a bit surprising.

“I was shocked with how big NSU was when I transferred,” said Bailey Walden, Sallisaw sophomore. “I had a few friends help me around and help me find things.”

A university representative visits all of the partner colleges multiple times throughout the year. During each visit, they provide students with admission information, degree information and any questions that students may have. Additionally, there is an NSU Day at each of the partner institutions.

“We have representation from financial aid, career services, housing, recruitment, academic advising and faculty during these events,” said Jennifer Ford, transfer coordinator. “We want these students to know that as an institution we support them in all aspects as they transition to NSU.”

Academic Affairs works with faculty and the representative from the partner college on updating the Smart Choice Agreements. This is to make sure the classes students take at the partner college are still a part of the degree plan here at NSU and to make sure they will count whenever a student will transfer. The goal is to have them listed in the course catalog for students to find.

While the Smart Choice agreements are being updated, students are advised to check with an adviser as to current program offerings. If students have questions about transfer services, visit Transfer Services in the upper level of the CASE Building or call them at 918-444-3253.

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