Improved web portal will help Virginia Community College students who aim to transfer to four-year institutions

Students looking to Virginia’s Community Colleges for help in transferring to four-year institutions now have a handy tool at their disposal. The TransferVA portal is a web-based tool that closes the information equity gap for all students across Virginia, providing full transparency of student options in transfer.

The portal made its debut last November. Since then, it has undergone an upgrade to include a wider array of tools and features. And the total number of college and university partners has increased to thirty-nine with another twenty-one in the pipeline.

Micol Hutchison, VCCS Director of Transfer, says students and their families can use the portal to explore different majors and perhaps more importantly, learn how an associate degree transfers to a four-year school. High school students can also leverage the platform to see how their dual enrollment courses transfer to a two or four-year college.

“It also provides students the ability to compare different institutions, compare different major pathways, and just see what all of their options are.”

While users are encouraged to explore the website and familiarize themselves with its many functions, Transfer Portal Coordinator Melody Crenshaw recommends visitors use the “Get Started” tab to better understand how the portal works.

“It provides a kind of a pathway, instructions how to use the website, and it asks some questions to help guide students where to go next.”

One of the platform’s best tools, Crenshaw says, is the “Check My Credits” feature. Users can leverage it to estimate how many credits a particular college will accept, based on the courses and exams he or she includes in their portfolio.

Crenshaw adds VCCS and Richard Bland College users can now upload their unofficial transcripts on the portal.

“It’s a key piece. I think we are going to see a lot of students benefiting from that feature.”

The portal also serves as a conduit for connecting students to institutions directly for early engagement and support through the transfer process.

Students won’t be the only ones making use of the platform. Hutchison points out that advisors will be using it as well. Helping students navigate the website and providing them with expert guidance, she says, is a crucial step in the transfer process.

“College advisors can introduce students to the portal in their first session, and so then, they’ll have provided context for the students and then the students can go and explore and discover an array of transfer opportunities available to them.”

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