Feb

1

17 Comments

  1. don't blame  

    CU for being unfair to your GPA. You applied to SEAS, and you clearly demonstrated some degree of quantitative aptitude, since you were accepted into the *engineering* school. Now you suddenly decide that math is boring and you want to study the history of polka dots instead. Well, that's great, but you still have a commitment as a SEAS student to finish at least part of the curriculum you agreed to undertake -- even if you decide to bail out later. How are you any different from a CMU or MIT or UPenn applicant who has also decided that calc and physics are just too damned hard for his meek mind, and has requested a transfer to CC? Though, if you can't stay above 3.5 not only as a freshman but with a bunch of nontech courses padding your ass, perhaps CC should accept you simply out of mercy.

  2. Secondly

    I think it's just as unfair for you to expect Columbia to give you special attention as you believe it to be unfair that they don't.

    As the poster above said, transferring to a school is tough (I know, I was thinking about doing it at one point too) and the reasons for it are multi-faceted and vary for each person. I think we can safely assume that people applying to transfer in from Columbia have been students at schools or with programs that did not satisfy them in one way or another. Yet knowing that they wanted to transfer, they still had to work their asses off in spite of their dissatisfaction to have the grades necessary to try for Columbia. Believe me, I was unhappy my first two years of college, and it's not an easy thing to do (both to be unhappy with college and to try to be a successful student regardless).

    From reading your article, it seems like you assumed that Columbia, because of your status as a SEAS student, would look at you differently from everyone else, and would be willing to excuse your poor GPA in the very courses you first applied to the University saying you wanted to take. You slacked off; only focusing on the courses that, if you were to stay in SEAS, wouldn't matter at all, hoping for some kind of get-out-of-jail-free card. I'm perplexed as to how you could have developed this line of thinking, seeing as you probably had to work unbelievably hard to get into either Columbia school in the first place.

  3. Also...  

    Also, keep in mind that the admissions rate of CC is around 10% while SEAS is 20%. You were a type of candidate SEAS was looking for, but that doesn't mean you were what CC was looking for. Requesting special attention is manipulation of the system - If the transfer process were loosened, then there would be some people who apply to SEAS just to get into CC later on.

    (On a side not, I wish Spec still had anonymous posting)

  4. book 'em

    "I did some research on the transfer process and discovered that students required a 3.5 cumulative GPA to transfer into either of Columbia’s two undergraduate schools."

    Really? Only two undergraduate schools? This fool must be in SEAS.

  5. um, really what's  

    wrong with that sentence? do you go to barnard or something?

    • book 'em

      There are three undergraduate schools plus the affiliate (Barnard). It's alright if he wants to ignore the fact that GS exists, but if he's looking for a school that would "meet his needs" while allowing him to complete a curriculum comparable to CC and grant essentially the same degree from the same university, he'd (likely) have a decent shot at getting into GS if he took a semester or two off.

  6. In other news...  

    re: Shortbus

    "Having two first names, however, is not so common."

    -- Article Author Ashley James

    I see what you did there.

  7. also  

    ::shameless insult about the "quality" of SEAS-article author's high school, and how it translates into his incompetence here::

  8. green  

    I think the overall point made in the SEAS article is a valid one. With the current regulations, the student has three options: (1) Remain in SEAS and graduate with a mediocre GPA and no desire for further work; (2) Transfer to a (presumably weaker) liberal arts school with no GPA cutoff; (3) Get good grades in classes he hates so he no longer has to take them. Considering how unlikely the last option is, the first two really are not in Columbia's best interest (which, let's be honest, is what actually matters here) and so less stringent transfer regulations would probably be better for the school in this case.

    That being said, the whole article reeks of the kind of entitlement that is honed when 95% of your high-school class goes to college and you feel like the university is there to serve and accommodate your needs.

  9. Huh  

    I transferred into CC and certainly did not have a 3.5

  10. wait  

    i feel like that picture is a pornstar

  11. transfer student

    your article was written with complete ignorance of the entire transfer process. just because you are a SEAS student should not make you entitled to easier admissions. Do you honestly think that SEAS has the toughest engineering curriculum? Students at schools like MIT, CalTech, or CMU are subject to even tougher grading standards without the GPA bump of the writing and film class that you took. Why aren't they allowed to be considered under the limit? Yet students from tough engineering schools transfer into Columbia every year. So even if you had been allowed to apply, you probably would have not gotten in despite your "special" circumstance.

  12. uninformed writer

    even if you were allowed to apply, do you think you would have gained admission with your below 3.5 GPA when only about 50 students, all with 3.9-4.0/4.0 GPA , are selected for transfer in an applicant pool of over 1000?

  13. Resume  

    Transferring from SEAS to Columbia does nothing except 1. give you a different line on your resume and 2. change your graduation requirements slightly.

    Since you can still take as many liberal arts classes as you want, transferring is really more about removing the inconvenience of also having to learn engineering. You know what's 1000 times more impressive than writing that whiny little article? Sucking it up and double-majoring. And even if you don't get a recognized BA in English from the College on your resume, you can still complete the classes that are equivalent to it. And if you cared about academics as much as grades, that would be enough.

    Also, what about the 4-1 program?

    Also, what about all the CC students who major in quantitative fields? You make it sound like attending CC is somehow less mathematical -- really, only if you want it to be. Kind of the whole point of the College is that it's for people well-rounded enough to do more than one kind of reasoning, if they want to.

    • ZvS

      To be fair, a "not BA" in a liberal arts field isn't just about a grade obsession. I tried, unsuccessfully, to transfer to the college my freshman year. While I don't grouse about it, being in SEAS did make it completely infeasible for me to add a liberal arts double major, something I would very much have liked to do. If you really want to work in your field of choice, your next best shot is grad school.

  14. ccalum

    my RA in first year did the 4-1 program... and got both the liberal arts & engineering degrees. also, some engineering majors (i'm thinking IEOR) are less quantitative than some CC majors (such as math/physics). and ieor folks wind up being very well liked by the big IB/consulting firms come senior year. the comp sci (cc) and comp eng (seas) majors are identical, too. if you can't transfer, just make the best of it. also, as someone about to graduate from a masters program and destined to be in the same position as engineers with bachelors degrees, i am completely envious of SEAS students - you save 2 years AND can get a good job.

  15. Alum

    Back in the day, SEAS had what was called the "terminal program" in which students who wanted to transfer to the College would take College courses while spending a final semester in SEAS. If they did well enough the College would accept them. If not, they would have to leave SEAS (which meant leaving Columbia unless GS would take them). I'm not sure what "well enough" meant, but it was not the same standard the College applied to transfers from elsewhere.

    As to the people who have asked why the College should treat internal transfers more leniently, I can offer at least one good answer. Most internal transfers are already in campus housing, on the meal plan, and/or otherwise consuming the same university resources they would consume in the College. A new arrival from elsewhere would be an addition to this pool of consumers, wheras an internal transfer is already in the pool.

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