What is Transfer 101?

Transfer 101 is a student-led, discussion style course meant to help incoming transfer students adjust to life at Stanford. The Transfer 101 curriculum is designed to build community and enhance belonging through four course modules. 

 "Healthy Communities, 3 weeks", "Diversity and Inclusion, 3 weeks", "Purposeful Living and Learning, 2 weeks", and "Sense of Belonging, 2 weeks".

Program Overview


Transfer 101 began in the 2019-2020 academic year with an inaugural cohort of 12 students led by two transfer students and Dr. Courtney Peña, the Frosh & Transfer 101 Program Manager. Courtney, a former community college transfer student, worked with transfer co-leads Stephen McReynolds ‘20 and Warren Mercer ‘21 to adapt the Frosh 101 pilot curriculum to respond to the dynamic needs and experiences of the transfer student population which is uniquely diverse as Transfers come in with a variety of dynamic life experiences.

Unique Context of Transfer Students:

The transfer community is diverse in many aspects including age, life experience, national origin, SES, and veteran status. This community, while small, faces many of the same challenges as Frosh upon transitioning to Stanford life. However, they also experience a unique set of additional challenges due to their status as transfers. For transfer students, finding community can be a challenge and this course is meant to help students navigate the complexities of transferring to Stanford. Whether transferring from another university, a community college, or having taken considerable time off from school - Transfer 101 is a place to find community and connect with other transfer students.


Transfer 101 is offered for two units of academic credit. Sections meet for 80 minutes a week for 10 weeks during fall quarter. This year, sections will be held virtually. Each section will be led by a pair of transfer student co-leads who have been trained on the course’s curriculum as well as best practices for leading Transfer 101 sections. 

How to Join:

All incoming transfers are welcome and encouraged to join the growing Transfer 101 community. Students can enroll through Axess by searching UAR 201.


Students who took the course reported feeling a strong sense of community and belonging. 91% of transfers who took Transfer 101 last year reported that they would recommend Transfer 101 to future transfers. One was unsure.

Here’s what our transfers had to say when asked what they would say to those considering taking Transfer 101:

  • “It was a good way to interact with other transfers once a week and maintain good relationships.”
  • “Great for the social opportunities and you get to know the other transfers better, so if you're interested in getting to know your cohort better I would highly recommend.”
  • “If you have time to fit it in your schedule, it's a very positive experience and worth taking.”
  • “Go for it. Keep an open mind and heart, and expect to collect and respect admirable human stories.”
  • “Definitely take as a transfer student. You want the community and support provided by your fellow transfers.”
  • “My initial thoughts before the class were that it was going to be about learning the things that students that came in as freshmen already know (where to go for things, how to navigate classes, picking majors, etc.) It is not that at all. It is more of an emotional check in and how to deal with the personal stress of academics at Stanford, as well as being aware of your interpersonal interactions with others on campus.”


Meet the Transfer 101 Co-Leads:

Transfer co-leads are here to help transfers navigate the complexities of transitioning to Stanford life. They care deeply about building community and are excited to lead their first sections.

Tina Wong, '23Tina Wong

Hometown: San Jose, CA

Brief Bio: After high school, I enlisted in the US Army as a medic for four years. I was stationed in Fort Polk, Louisiana and deployed to Afghanistan for nine months. After our contracts ended, my husband and I moved to California to begin our studies at the College of San Mateo, and I transferred to Stanford to study Economics in Fall 2019. Since my arrival, I have been actively involved with the Stanford Undergraduate Association of Veterans (SUAV) as a club officer and the Office of Military-Affiliated Communities (OMAC) as a student-employee.


Why Take Transfer 101? It's so easy to get caught up in the intensity of your first quarter as you constantly adapt to new norms and adjust your plans. Transfer 101 is a fantastic once-a-week opportunity to re-center, reflect in the moment, and stay in touch with your community.


Joel Johnson

Hometown: Anacortes, WA

Brief Bio: Hey everyone, I'm Joel! I enjoy carbs and dry humor. Grew up in Washington, basically on the Canadian border, and enlisted in the Marine Corps right after graduating high school where I spent five years before coming to Stanford. I'm a rising Junior studying Symbolic Systems and am applying for the Computer Science co-term, with the intention of applying for MBA programs following graduation. 


Why take Transfer 101? When coming to Stanford as a non-traditional student, there are multiple added layers of complexity you have to consider. Generations of transfers before you have already ironed out a lot of the growing pains you'll likely encounter, and Transfer 101 is a great opportunity to help ease your transition into undergraduate student life at Stanford. Additionally, the transfer community is often very tight-knit and this is a great way for you to network and get to know your cohort.


Alan BrantleyAlan Brantley

Hometown: La Habra, CA

Brief Bio: I'm a third year transfer and JKCF transfer scholar from Fullerton Community College in North Orange County, CA. I'm originally from Alabama and Florida, and have lived in California since 2005. I transferred to Stanford as an intended mathematics major, but through my early exploration, I discovered the rich and fulfilling field of design and design thinking pioneered here at Stanford by the Design School (d.school) and the Mechanical Engineering department. I'm currently completing my BS in Product Design Engineering, ultimately in preparation for a Master's degree in Mechanical Engineering. 


Why Take Transfer 101? The most important factor in easing my transition to Stanford in 2018 was the fact that I joined a robust community of transfers, most of whom I became acquainted with at NSO in the week prior to the beginning of classes. The consequence of being a part of the transfer community was that I genuinely felt like a part of the larger Stanford community the moment I stepped foot into a classroom. This sense of belonging was critical for me as I adjusted to the social and classroom cultures of Stanford. For me, Transfer 101 is about building community, getting to know our peers, and engaging with (and contributing to) the culture of Stanford while reaping the rewards of friendship and community support in return.


Cahron CrossCahron Cross

Hometown: Homewood, Il

Brief Bio: I transferred in 2019 from Prairie State College in Chicago Heights, Illinois after returning to school following several years away from formal education. In my time away from school, I worked as a songwriter, social worker, and Yoga teacher. I am planning on majoring in Philosophy and Religious studies (most likely) and have a particular interest in Eastern Philosophy and Buddhist studies. 


Why Take Transfer 101? Transfer 101 was extremely helpful in giving me a sense of belonging and allowing me a space to feel at home immediately. Through the connections I made and the self-reflection and compassion the class demanded, I was able to seamlessly transition to Stanford both socially and academically while, at the same time, growing as a human being.


Meet the Frosh 101 and Transfer 101 Leadership Team:


Transfer 101 cohort in Autumn 2019, post yarn activity.    Group Photo of Inaugural Transfer 101 cohort in Autumn 2019