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The seventh annual Transfer Summit is a way for high school counselors, admission counselors, academic advisors, and transfer coordinators at both community colleges and four-year institutions to connect and talk about hot topics regarding transfer students. Join us virtually over a two day experience.


All sessions will be recorded and made available following the Summit conclusion. ISBE PD hours will be available for school counselors that attend sessions live and upon verification of attendance 75% of the session.

The most up to date version of Zoom is recommended for an optimal experience.

Thursday, February 17th

1:00 pm

April Ponte, IACAC Transfer Advisory Committee
Brian Hodges, IACAC President-elect
Nicholas DeFalco, IACAC Transfer Advisory Committee

Keynote Speaker: Marcela Calderon, 2018 IACAC Transfer Scholarship Winner, Graduate of Downers Grove South, College of Dupage, and Roosevelt University

2:00 pm (choose one)

Session 1A: Creating a Personal Touch
Jorge Colon, Illinois State University
Morgan Johnson, Illinois State University

Our approach to communicating with transfer students is always evolving. One thing that we found effective is adding layers of personal touch in our outreach to students. We plan to share what has worked for us, invite others to share what they have tried, and brainstorm new ideas. Other institutions are encouraged to attend and share their efforts in personal engagement with their prospective students!

Session 1B: Explain Fully: The Special Circumstances Essay
Presenters: Hanna Stotland, Hanna Stotland – Admissions Consultant

How do you help a student who has the right academic credentials, but has a problem on his or her record that requires further explanation? Colleges can be forgiving when the student owns the problem and explains the recovery persuasively.

Session 1C: Undocumented Transfer Student Success
Presenters: Ireri Rivas Mier y Teran, TheDream.US

TheDream.US is the nation’s largest college access and success program for undocumented students. More than a third of our Scholars are community college transfer students. This session will detail the obstacles our students face in transferring, with a particular focus on the challenges of the past two years; will highlight their successes and share best practices from our work.

3:00 pm (choose one)

Session 2A: Supporting Transfer Students through Golden Apple Scholars
Ziggy Blackwell, Golden Apple Foundation
Norma De La Rosa, Golden Apple Foundation

There is a critical teacher shortage in Illinois and Golden Apple is committed to making a material difference through its Scholars Program. Golden Apple Scholars is a teacher preparation program that provides tuition assistance, mentoring, job placement assistance and academic and social-emotional support for aspiring teachers. Learn how Golden Apple Scholars supports transfer student’s pathway into teaching.

Session 2B: Recruiting Veterans Students to Your Campus
Alejandro Campos, University of St. Francis

This session will provide some practical lessons on tapping into the veteran market and why recruiting veteran students brings many benefits to your campus. Learn how these students can use federal benefits (GI Bill, Yellow Ribbon, IVG) on your campus to help them enroll and matriculate at your institution. We will also share strategies to help support this unique group of students to navigate the higher education landscape to degree completion.

4:00 pm

: Join in for an informal virtual meetup to connect on all areas of the transfer process. As colleagues, we can discuss everything from transfer best practices, frustrations and pain points in supporting transfer student success (as well as how we respectively approach those obstacles at our institutions), sharing ideas and projects, or whatever comes to mind! As we wrap up Day 1 of our Transfer Summit, sit back, relax, and meet other professionals who are interested in these discussions.

Friday, February 18th

9:00 am

Session 3A: Creating a Transfer Student Community
Morgan Johnson, Illinois State University
Jilashli Kim, Illinois State University Graduate

Are your transfer students feeling isolated? Find out how Illinois State University incorporated Transfer Redbirds into their institution! This organization helps to acclimate students to their new environment and foster connections between members and university programs, organizations, and resources. They’ve also played a key role in celebrating NTSW. You’ll leave this session with the building blocks to start an organization of your own!

Session 3B: Removing the Roadblocks: Assisting Non-Traditional Students in their Path Through Higher Education
Olivia Mendez-Alm, University of Missouri – St. Louis
Zakery Tierney, University of Missouri – St. Louis

Utilizing a combination of dedicated academic advisors in Admissions, high-touch student-focused communications, pre-admission degree audits, majors designed to maximize transfer credit, and flexible course formats, University of Missouri-St. Louis has breathed new life into the recruitment process for non-traditional students. Learn new strategies to better connect with adult learners as they navigate their way to and through higher education.

Session 3C: The High School Transition to Community College
April Ponte, Oswego High School

High school counselors see a large number of students matriculate to the community colleges in their area but what happens after? What do you say to your student when they ask about the transfer process? Learn how to best prepare them for what’s to come to ensure they have a smoother process moving from high school, to community college, to their 4 year college, then to their career.

10:00 am

Session 4A: Creating Accessible Communication
Elena Roth, Illinois State University

Learn the basic building blocks of creating accessible communication for students with disabilities. This session will discuss best practices for digital accessibility within social media, email and text messages, PDFs, and websites. It’s important to make recruitment communication inclusive and ensure we are meeting students where they are.

Session 4B: Early Partnerships for Transfer Success
Olivia Ballhagen, University of Northern Iowa

This session provides community college advisors insight on early intervention transfer resources for community college students in their first semester to maximize students’ time & money. With the UNI Transfer Connection Program, transfer tools and community college partnerships we are able to supplement the advising at the community college & benefit a smooth transition for students to the university.

Session 4C: Transferring to the UK – how to make the most of your college credits
Raluca Pasare, The University of Manchester

This session aims to highlight the process for transferring from Community College to UK universities. With a 3 year degree standard, UK universities accept students with college credit, but often the process is unclear. This session seeks to demystify some of the process and bring alternatives to students who are enrolled in college credits.

11:00 am

Birds of a Feather: 2 yr; 4 yr; High School Counselors; CBO/Other Breakout Session and Closing Remarks


Contact the Transfer Advisory Committee.

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