Growing up, the financial cost of going to college felt like an obstacle that would be nearly impossible to overcome. There is a recurring problem of high school students being pushed to jump right into a four year university. I personally decided to go to a local community college first to get an associate’s degree that I could then transfer to a four year university. The ability to explore my options while completing prerequisite courses for a fraction of the cost was helpful to my education and made the most sense for my financial situation. It also boosted my confidence with my academic goals and abilities.

After two and a half years I finally had my associates degree, and with a major in mind, I applied to Pacific as they offered an editing and publishing minor which would compliment my English literature major well. All of my credits transferred and I was looking forward to only taking the upper-level courses to get my bachelor’s. Yet, when I started to apply for my fall term courses, I was informed that I had to take multiple 100-level courses including subjects like language, sustainability, and civic engagement. When I was researching Pacific as a possible college choice, there wasn’t any mention of having to take these courses, even if one has a transfer degree. 

To attain these core requirements, I have to take January terms and possibly a summer course that I can’t afford. Another option would be  to take 18 credits a term, which is not possible with the amount of hours working I have to do in order to pay bills. 

Frankly, I am annoyed and frustrated. These extra core requirements have put a damper on my enthusiasm for Pacific and stressed me out about having to work around these requirements. The special requirements for graduation at Pacific should be mentioned to any potential transfer students so they can plan for the extra courses and have a better understanding of what Pacific expects. If I had known about these extra required courses, I would have likely chosen another school.

Don’t get me wrong, I do not think my associate’s degree was a waste or that Pacific isn’t a good school. I just wish I knew beforehand so that I could have planned for the extra courses instead of learning about it for the first time at my advising meeting. Pacific needs to be more open with its transfer students about additional classes and expectations when choosing Pacific. — Jazmine Henning

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Jazmine Henning is a junior and writer for the Index. She is currently perusing a degree in English Literature. She is from the Gresham area and recently transferred from Mt. Hood Community College. Her best friend is her cat Autumn.

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