Michael Schwartz Center addition to be a place for transfer assistance

Kim Brown

Students can expect to see a new office in the Michael Schwartz Center by late spring as a transfer center nears completion in the Registrar’s office.

The new addition is designed to provide students with a place to help understand the credit transfer and evaluation process to quicken the overall transcript transfer.

“It’s the idea of taking the academic advisers and admissions office and putting the two in one place so students can get those services in one area,” admissions associate director Mark Ledoux said. “We’re going to pull all transfers into one place, and that should hopefully help students.”

The office will also help new Kent State transfer students determine credit transfer from their previous schools and make academic guidance available. He said Kent State typically has around 1,000 new transfer students every year.

“I think it’s a good move,” University Registrar Glenn Davis said. “It allows the university to provide more focus to a group of perspective students in a way we have not been able to do in the past. We can give immediate attention to concerns and questions.”

Ledoux said it can be confusing for current students to figure out how credits transfer from courses taken at another school. He said many students do not realize the admissions office must receive course permission and the transient student’s transcript in order to transfer credits. He said it is important to address how to help students understand the policies in the transfer process.

“I felt like I was asking a lot of questions during the transfer process,” sophomore marketing major Elizabeth Whiteman said. “I wasn’t sure when I would receive the actual credits on my transcript.”

Whiteman took microeconomics through Columbus State Community College last summer in order to get ahead in her major. She said she feels there was not enough information and guidance available from Columbus State and Kent State to understand the process.

Davis said the center is meant to provide feedback and enhanced help as quickly as possible to current and transfer students. He said students want to know and should know the transfer process.

He said in the future, a student’s transfer work will go directly to the center rather than going through the advisers and admissions first.

Pete Goldsmith, vice president of Enrollment Management and Student Affairs, said the department wants to increase transfer student enrollment. He said the transfer center should help focus on transfer students and transfer evaluations.

“The process wasn’t difficult, but not all of my credits transferred from my previous school,” said Mark Beckerman, junior health and physical education major.

Beckerman transferred from Marietta College to Kent State in 2006 and changed his major from athletic training. He said he tried to work with advisers from both schools in order to have the credits transfer.

“On Kent State’s end, I kept getting the run around. No one really pointed me in the right direction or who to go to for help,” he said.

Ledoux said admissions and other departments can answer questions in a basic way but do not have similar training as academic advisers. The new center is meant to ease the confusion of which department to go to for the transfer process.

Davis said there is usually delay with connecting transient students to the right department, and the center will assist with those problems to help build relationships with the specific department for a faster transfer. He said the center will take the department into a new phase in order to provide better service to students.

Goldsmith said the department is in the final stages of hiring a new staff to accommodate the transfer center.

“We think the center is going to be a very exciting development that will provide good service for students,” Goldsmith said.

A benefit of hiring a new staff, Ledoux said, is that those people can be trained for new positions to handle transfer credits and understand how credits apply to the current curriculum.

Contact student affairs reporter Kim Brown at [email protected].