Hi! I’m Katarina, a senior History major and Hispanic Studies minor here at W&M. I just started as a Transfer intern with the William & Mary Admission Office, and I’m so excited to tell you a bit about my transfer story and my experience here at William & Mary so far! If you’re reading this as a potential transfer student, know that I wouldn’t have taken the internship if I wasn’t happy with my decision.
I’m an out-of-state student, and I graduated high school in 2020 (the year of drive-through graduations). Since the pandemic came about right when I was making my college decisions, I knew that the smart choice was to attend my local state school for the first year. After all, classes were completely online, so it made sense to live at home and save all the money I could!
When my first semester of college came to a close, it was announced that my school (which had over 20,000 students) was planning for in-person classes for the fall of 2021. Coming from a small high school, I knew that I wanted to find a more intimate campus community. I found just that at William & Mary.
Some friends and I at Convocation, one of W&M’s biggest traditions. It’s a great way to welcome all the new students!
I’m probably one of the few people who can say that high school was a positive experience, and I am a firm believer that I had such a great time (in, admittedly, some of the most awkward years of my life) because of the community I found through school. When it came time to transfer, I was immediately grasped by a phrase on the W&M website that said something along the lines of: “Here, you’re not just a number.” I appreciated that William & Mary places such a focus on community while simultaneously helping students to cultivate individuality. As a History major focusing on early America, the fact that William & Mary is steeped in history didn’t hurt, either.
Since arriving at William & Mary, I’ve been lucky enough to work with so many people that make our campus community so close-knit. On any given day, it’s not uncommon to hear students walking and chatting casually about academic debates and current events, and it feels great to be a part of not only the incredible campus community, but the academic powerhouse that makes William & Mary a “Public Ivy.” I feel like I’ve been getting so much more out of my education since arriving because here, classes aren’t just something that you have to go to. The students here engage with others in collaborative classroom environments, which helps to foster the campus community outside the classroom. Through making connections with students and professors in my classes, I learned about a study abroad program, which I did this summer as a part of conducting research. Even as a transfer, there is plenty of room to participate in all William & Mary has to offer!
This is a picture of me on vacation right after I got into William & Mary. I’m proudly wearing my new William & Mary green sweatshirt!
When I got in, it was so exciting to look ahead to what felt like a new beginning. After taking classes from home for a year, and after hearing over and over again that I “should learn to love” my bigger state school, I couldn’t have been more excited to jump into college life for the first time (and finally get to wear a college sweatshirt that resonated with me!). Transferring colleges is a big step, but it’s not impossible. Above all, it’s exciting; kudos to you for taking your future into your own hands and recognizing that you want a change!
-Katarina Bromkamp ’23