Alumnae offer tips on transfer

Cal State Berkeley ambassadors are using a different approach to help new transfer students get accustomed to the idea of a four-year university lifestyle.

The new presentation style focused on a student familiarity theme, which highlighted real students and their personal experiences at a four-year institution. The workshop event, facilitated by the Los Medanos College Transfer Program staff, was held Wednesday, April 8, at 12:30 p.m. in L-109.

A dimly lit room slowly started to fill 29 of the 40 pre-appointed seats designated by the information packets that adorned them. The silhouettes of eager transfer students appeared as a collage against the backdrop of the bright projector screen.

Sabrina Gonsalos, a representative speaker at the workshop and an alumna of both LMC and UCLA, spoke first explaining some of her experiences with housing.

“I decided to live off campus because it was more convenient for my educational purposes,” she said, “but there are other available options for housing, such as dorms and on-campus living.”

She added, the college community also offered programs to help house students with low-income requirements.

Leading into her presentation she smiled as she introduced one of a series of YouTube video segments like “Cali Cribs,” college version spin-offs of reality sitcoms like MTV Cribs, Real World and other popular MTV reality shows of the ‘90s.

Her enthusiasm drew the attention of the audience to the screen while creating an atmosphere of a movie theater-like setting.

The audience was hooked and absorbed more information than at previous transfer events, said Ade Origunwa, LMC’s transfer program coordinator.

Gonsales explained she wanted to go with the theme of real students explaining to other students the reality of getting accustomed to four-year institutions.

“And with this new approach to the transfer workshop we hope to help students understand what to expect beyond just the technical criteria of transferring,” she said, adding that this new presentation style was inspired by student ambassadors from both LMC and UC Berkeley.

Yessenia Tores, an alumna from both LMC and UCLA, spoke next about the ease of transportation to Berkeley commuters, as well as the food benefits offered to students on and off campus. Tores also showed a similar YouTube reality sitcom video corresponding to her particular topic. The whole event resembled a brochure, said one of the students attending the workshop.

“I had already been considering transferring to UC Berkley and this presentation really helped me understand what college life was like after transferring,” said Darren Meeks, secretary of the STARS club at LMC and event organizer.

School spirit was one of the last few topics covered in this workshop and this time both Tores and Gonsalos presented eloquently in unison, focusing on tradition and prestige of UCLA.

As the presentation was drawing to a close the speakers fielded questions, then Tores reassured the audience that university students enjoyed benefits that most of the public does not, solidifying the importance of familiarity with each campus and its community resources.

Tores completed the workshop event by reminding the audience that transferring and acclimating to a new institution is easier than it seems and more exciting than they realize. And she advised students to always make a point of knowing their professors’ office hours because it will make a world of difference.

For more information about transferring to a four-year institution or about future workshops, stop by the Transfer Center or contact Ade Origunwa online at [email protected]