The Next Steps: Making the Transition to a Four-Year Institution

Before SpringFest last Saturday, I – along with fellow GMC and PTK alum Shayne Williams –  had the opportunity to lead a panel on moving from a 2 year school to a 4 year university for the the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society Regional Conference. Luckily for me, the conference was in Milledgeville, hosted by Georgia Military College, so I could make both events. You can view the slides here, or look over the outline below.

The Next Steps: Making the Transition to a Four-Year Institution

About Us

Daniel R. Simpson, MPA

  • Academic Advisor at Georgia College
  • MPA (‘10) and BA – Political Science (‘08) from Georgia College
  • AA – General Studies (‘06) from Georgia Military College
  • Alpha Omicron Epsilon Chapter VP (‘05-’06)

Shayne Williams

  • Mass Communication/PR and Political Science student at Georgia College
  • AA – General Studies (’12) from Georgia Military College
  • Alpha Omicron Epsilon Chapter President

Top Ten Tips

Complete your Associate Degree

  • Credit transfers more easily if the degree is awarded
  • If no degree is awarded, the follow institution can pick and choose by class
  • If everything does not transfer, you may fall behind

Find YOUR best fit

  • The best college in the world is worthless if you do not like it there
  • Find one that has the program you need
  • Find one you can afford
  • Find one where you will be happy

Plan Ahead

  • If you know where you want to transfer, incorporate their requirements into your current degree plan
  • If your follow on program has prerequisites, go ahead and take them if possible

Do not be shy

  • Maintain an open dialogue with your transfer admissions representative
  • Once you are admitted, contact your academic advisor to discuss course selection
  • Visit campus and find your way around before the first day of classes

Choose a major

  • By the time you transfer, you will mostly be in your major classes
  • Because of this, you will need to have selected a major

File all the necessary paperwork

  • Do not forget your final transcripts
  • Make sure to have them sent AFTER the degree posts, not just final grades

Take Care of Financial Aid

  • You will need to include the new institution information on your FAFSA
  • Look into specialized scholarships for transfer and ΦΘΚ students
  • Also check major based scholarships

Attend Orientation

  • Will help you find your way around your new campus
  • Will let you know what resources are available
  • Will give you a chance to meet important contacts

Stay Focused

  • Your classes will be tougher; meet the challenge
  • Remember the basics of academic success
  • Ask for help when you need it

Make Use of Your New Resources

  • Your Academic Advisor
  • Tutoring Center or Supplemental instruction
  • Organizations especially for transfer students

For More Information

Daniel R. Simpson

  • (478) 445-6294

Shayne Williams



  • Hyman, Jeremy S., and Lynn F. Jacobs. “10 Tips for Transferring From Community College.” U.S. News and World Report, 2009.

The 2012 Meetings of the Georgia Political Science Association

A couple of weeks ago, I attended the 2012 Meetings of the Georgia Political Science Association. This is a conference that is very near and dear to me. It was the first one I attended, as a senior in undergrad. They listened to me stumble through my rather horrid paper on using social networking in the political science classroom, and remained encouraging. I have presented several times since, on everything from election administration to budgeting policy. This year though, I was there only as an attendee.

I got to Savannah early, so I kept driving a little further out to Tybee Island. I had been there over the summer, but some beach pictures are just better when the crowds are elsewhere.

I love piers. They are so peaceful, yet active at the same time. Even as I was being attacked by seagulls while I was taking this picture.

Yeah, this shot was impossible during the summer.

I had totally missed the lighthouse on my last visit. Not entirely sure how that happened.

I didn’t think about getting any pictures around the conference hotel or surrounding area, but it was in the Savannah Historic District, so you know it was amazing. Savannah is one of my favorite cities; has been since I was young and going with my father to conferences. If you ever get a chance to visit, do so. Stroll down the Riverwalk. Have lunch al fresco at one of the cafés at City Market.

The conference itself was all that I had hoped. There were election round tables  and public administration discussions, not to mention the American politics and political history papers. It was great to see everyone from around the state, and I was highly impressed at some of the undergraduate research. Can’t wait until next year.