The move from basically anywhere to University Park is an adjustment. Whether you are coming from out of state, out of the country or just a city away, University Park can be full of ups and downs. While there are many reasons to fall in love with this ginormous school, junior Nicole Schwall, a transfer student from Penn State Lehigh Valley, talks the top 10 struggles of being a transfer student.
1. First of all, there are no dorms at Lehigh Valley — it’s completely comprised of commuting students. The feeling of wanting to shower, but knowing that along with showering in a communal bathroom comes shower shoes. It’s definitely a change from the clean shower she has just a few steps away from her bedroom at home.
2. Moving from home and living on a college campus means no more home-cooked meals — unless you want to pay thousands of dollars to live off campus just to have a semi-adequate kitchen.
3. Along with number two on the list comes not being able to walk downstairs for easy access to food. “I took for granted being able to come home after class and just eat whatever, whenever. Now, I have to walk all the way to the dining hall … and the lines are crazy.”
4. Going from a full-sized, king bed to a small twin bed. “I’m used to having my own space, a big bed to sprawl out on, so that sucked.”
5. Anyone that lives on-campus knows how much this university lacks when it comes to storage space. “I have a lot of clothes, and there isn’t a lot of room in the closet — again, used to coming home to my own closet and my own space.”
6. At a school this big, finding housing can be ruthless. “Finding housing was such a struggle. You would think with all the people here, they would have more housing available.”
7. Parking. This struggle speaks for itself. Trying to find a place to park anywhere near campus without getting a parking ticket is like trying to find a place to sit at the HUB during lunchtime. Parking at Lehigh Valley has designated lots for students that you don’t have to pay for — there’s always spots readily available without having to drive up College Ave. three times.
8. Scheduling classes is yet again another battle main campus students face. The struggle of trying to have all of your classes ready to go by midnight, hitting submit right away and then seeing half of the classes you need filled within seconds makes students want to cry. Lehigh Valley is so small that waitlists don’t exist. You get the classes you want for when you want them with no issue.
9. “Why are Oreos at the commons $6? Why is everything on campus so overpriced? I’m already halfway through my meal points and it is only October.”
10. The biggest struggle of being a transfer student, according to Schwall, is the distance. “Having to walk to classes that are all the way across campus with so many people doing the same thing at the same time is overwhelming. I miss just being able to park my car wherever, taking 20 steps and being at my class.”
Schwall still sees why people from across the globe come here for their education though. “The school spirit here is undeniable and you just have to adjust to all the bad to get to the good. There will always be someone willing to help you … or at least someone to cry with and share the struggles with you.”