Interview with Transfer Student Bailey Chiesa

The process of transferring schools is different for everybody. Some find the process to be easy-breezy, while others find it a complete headache. Some must transfer multiple times until they find the right schools. And some have the whole world locked down when they are trying to go through such a big transition period in their lives. Today, I am speaking with Maryville senior Bailey Chiesa, an English major who transferred to Maryville during the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Amelia: What made you transfer schools? Why did you choose Maryville?

Bailey: My senior year of high school, I graduated a semester early. I wasn’t sure where I wanted to go to school, so I decided to go to community college for my first year. While I was at community college, I decided to look into local universities to see what my options where. I chose to go Maryville because of the small class sizes. With a small class size, it’s easier to build a connection with your classmates and your professors, which is something I really wanted.

Amelia: What are you most excited about now that you’re at Maryville, or what do you like the most about Maryville?

Bailey:  One thing I really like about Maryville is how I’m able to build relationships with my professors and classmates since the classes are so small. I also like how small our campus is. It’s not too small where you run into the same people every day, but small enough that I am able to get in between classes without feeling rushed.

Amelia: What did you find easy about the process of transferring to Maryville? Were there any advisors or staff at Maryville that made the transition easier?

Bailey: The things I found easy about transferring here was that all I had to do was turn in a copy of my transcripts. I didn’t have to write an essay or anything that some colleges require you to do. One of the staff members that helped me with my transferring process was my admissions counselor, Terrence Andrews. He helped me with any questions I had about documents I needed to turn in to make the transforming process easier. He also made sure that my credits from the community college transferred over so I wouldn’t have to take extra classes.

Maryville Admissions Director, Terrence Andrews

Amelia: What did you find difficult about transferring to Maryville? What concerns/questions did you have that went unaddressed?

Bailey: One thing I found to be difficult about transferring to Maryville was making new friends and getting involved. Since I am a transfer and a commuter student, I found it really hard to get involved. I also came to Maryville in Fall 2020 during COVID, which didn’t help. When I got here, I felt like everyone already had their group of friends. Now that everything is opened back up, I am slowly finding my group of people! It was just hard at first because I was new.

Amelia: Did you enjoy orientation? If so, what did you like? If not, what would you change?

Bailey: I had a different orientation experience than most people. Since I transferred here during the Fall 2020, everything was virtual. Orientation helped me a little bit, but not much. I just kind of had to figure everything out on my own. When I transferred here, it was also my friend’s first year at Maryville. We both didn’t know what we were doing, so we would help each other out when it came to figuring out how to set up student ID, finding classes, etc.

Amelia: What is one thing you like about Maryville?

Bailey: One thing I like about Maryville is how nice everyone is. Even though I’m a senior, this is the first year I have been able to get involved in events because of COVID. For example, I participated in MRO this year for the first time. I was nervous because I did it by myself, and I didn’t know anyone in my group. When I got there, everyone in my group was extremely welcoming and super nice. I’ve experienced this with many other events at Maryville too.

Amelia: How is Maryville different than your previous school?

Bailey: Before Maryville, I attended a local community college. At the community college, I felt like everyone was just treated as another student passing through until their next journey. None of the professors really cared about their students, they just did their presentations and gave us the homework and told us when the test was. They didn’t take the time to genuinely get to know us. At Maryville, all my professors know my interests, hobbies, etc. My professors take the time to get to know me. They care about my education.

Amelia: How would you describe your transfer process overall?

Bailey: Overall I would say my transfer process was good. It was hard because it was during COVID, so I didn’t get the typical experience. All of my credits transferred, and I was able to find my classes which is what I was worried about the most.

Amelia: Do you have any advice for Maryville transfer students, or students thinking of transferring?

Bailey: One piece of advice I can give to students who are thinking about transferring is it’s okay if you don’t know anyone. Don’t be scared to get involved. Sometimes it can be scary to do things on your own, but everyone is so nice and welcoming. I was scared of going to events at Maryville on my own, but once I did, I found a group of people to hang out with. I never regretted going to any of these events because I always had fun! So, get involved because you won’t regret it!

COVID-19 isn’t over, but thankfully we have found ways to come together as a student body despite the changes we’ve had to face. To learn more about how to get involved at Maryville, talk to your Life Coach or visit https://maryville.campuslabs.com/engage/. If you ever have any questions or concerns, please reach out to Maryville staff and Life Coaches for guidance. Thank you, Saints!

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