It is a common feeling to enter Millersville University feeling lost, confused and intimidated. Many transfer students feel this as they begin courses at MU after leaving their previous institution. However, someone is here to help. Kim Morton, newly appointed Advisement Coordinator of Transfer Students, seeks to extend a helping hand. Although Morton’s first day at Millersville was only three weeks ago, she has been working with transfer students for the past ten years at a community college in Virginia.
“I often heard of their frustration as they were in the process of transferring which led me to focus on that topic for my doctoral dissertation, said Morton. “I brought all that knowledge here to Millersville to help students transferring in.”
The Department of Academic and Student Development have been researching the needs of transfer students over the past two years. This research has involved an email survey sent out two years ago followed by two focus groups in the spring semesters of 2013 and 2014. This gave Millersville the information it needed to create Morton’s position of Academic Coordinator of Transfer Students.
In an effort to reach out to transfer students, Millersville has offered Transfer Orientation and Transfer Advising Days for many years now in order to assist students with the registration process and get acclimated to Millersville’s campus. While these events prove helpful to transfer students, they occur infrequently. “My hope is to not only welcome the students through Orientation, but help them with the transition long term,” said Morton.
To achieve this goal, Morton has created the MU Transfer Student Brown Bag Lunch Series as well as a Facebook page dedicated to transfer students. Every Tuesday at noon beginning on Sept. 16, transfer students are invited to bring their lunch to Club de’Ville to learn about various topics relating to success on campus. These topics include, but are not limited to, “Tools of the MU Library,” “Carnival of Majors,” “Managing Stress,” and “Getting Involved at MU.” Millersville’s own faculty and staff will be presenting the topics for the Brown Bag Lunch Series.
Presenters include Tatiana Balkenhol from the Library, Dr. Bessick from Learning Services, Dr. Martinez from the Center for Student Involvement and Leadership, Dr. Tim Shea from Global Education, Dr. Lynch from the Counseling Center, and Katherine Kealey from Transition Programs. For those students who are unable to attend the Brown Bag Lunch Series, be sure to check out the Transfer Student Facebook page at www.facebook.com/mutransfer for updates following the presentations. This is also a great place for transfer students to discuss issues or plan gatherings.
Morton has found that the biggest concern for incoming transfer students is how their previous coursework will transfer to Millersville.
“I’ve gotten lots of questions about how classes transferred over and what to do if they didn’t transfer over as they had thought the classes would” she said.
Transfer students are welcome to email Morton at Kimberly.Morton@millersville.edu with any questions or concerns pertaining to their adjustment to Millersville. Morton is also very flexible and encourages students to stop by her office located at Lyle Hall in Room 261.