Last year, we investigated the soul-searching dilemma of whether or not to switch into Gallatin from CAS. The most popular switches are arguably those into Gallatin and Tisch. We’d have to do a factorial to figure it out, so we won’t list all of the possibilities. But many of you have recently made this decision – or are scrambling to make it in time for upcoming class registration.
Granted, it’s tempting to immediately accept the “NYU Admissions Decision” that alarmingly appeared in your mailbox a few weeks ago. (How many thought you were receiving a fluke acceptance to the university?) Given the hard work you put into your transfer application, it seems counter-intuitive to throw the opportunity away. But there are reasons for not switching, and NYU has more than one college because of them.
It’s not uncommon to hear that “everyone has a place in Gallatin.” The school can serve the most liberal education as well as the most conservative (pre-med, pre-law). Everyone has a specialty, and it can be hard to justify a career in English or Math when courses in those disciplines don’t fit the academic plan mapped by your school.
Whitney Meer, a freshman moving into Gallatin from CAS, conceded that the decision was not for everyone. Some people “can benefit from the structure of their major,” she noted.
In some cases, “if you know, you know”: Brittany Siler, also a freshman, realized at Steinhardt summer orientation that she wanted to switch. An aspiring writer, Siler had chosen to study teaching, a “bad decision if you don’t know what to choose – not only are you stuck with it, but the people you teach are screwed too.”
Most of the transfers, of course, come from LSP, occupying a unique position: Original acceptance to NYU arrives with a guaranteed school-switch at some point (sophomore year for Tisch, junior year for CAS, etc.). Accordingly, NYU schools accommodates these changes, taking them into account when applications from other schools pour in each spring. 202 students internally transfer each year into Gallatin, according to Transfer Student Adviser Jeanette Tran. Similar figures apply to the other schools.
It can be surprising how at length students will consider their acceptance. The possibility of changing schools implies a larger change, a grand-scale decision on the basis of college careers, and the weight of your parents’ and friends’ opinions can seem crushing at times. “College” becomes even more of a vehicle to another place: this decision will influence your major, which will narrow your career choices, and so on. But we are lucky to be in a place that not only accepts, but also supports, such changes, and equally lucky to have a variety of “colleges” and schools at our very reachable disposal.