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UMSI to celebrate transfer students with week of special events

A photo of Tyra Briscoe, a photo of Joey Quick, and a photo of Yessenia Santana-Perez with the UMSI logo in the corner

Thursday, 10/12/2023

During National Transfer Student Week, which runs from Oct. 16 to Oct. 20, the University of Michigan School of Information will host events for current and prospective transfer students, including an appreciation lunch and information session. 

“Transfer students often bring a wealth of prior academic and life experiences that enrich our learning environment,” says LeAnna Level, assistant director of diversity recruitment and admissions. “UMSI benefits from the fresh perspectives and ideas transfer students contribute, and we're excited to provide them with opportunities to thrive academically and personally.”

Students from external institutions — two-year and four-year colleges and universities — can be admitted directly into the Bachelor of Science through the “new transfer” pathway, joining the program for the final two years of their four-year degree.

“We strive to make the transition for transfer students as smooth and seamless as possible,” Level says.

New transfer students are admitted into a cohort that becomes their first community at UMSI. They attend orientation and take the BSI core required courses together in their first semester. “This approach ensures that students have peer support and a solid network from the start,” Level says.

Through the iSuccess program, transfer students have the opportunity to participate in activities and programs designed to help them succeed academically, personally and professionally. Further support comes in the form of a peer mentorship program that connects transfer students with experienced peers who can provide guidance.

Yessenia Santana-Perez stands on a sidewalk. Her eyes are closed, and she smiles as she listens to music wearing a pair of headphones.

Yessenia Santana-Perez (BSI ’25) started the BSI program this fall. Originally from the Dominican Republic, she was on the business path at Grand Rapids Community College when she decided to participate in UMSI’s Community College Summer Institute

“That's when I fell in love with information science because I feel like it can be used for a lot of things,” she says. 

During the application process, she leaned on Level, reaching out as questions came up. Confident that she wanted to attend UMSI, Santana-Perez made a bold decision. “I didn't apply to any other university,” she says. “This was my number one option.”

A little over a month in, she already feels a strong sense of community. “We have been very, very close,” she says of her transfer cohort. “When I got into classes, being able to recognize faces — it doesn’t feel like I’m in this alone.”

Joey Quick (BSI ’24) agrees. “The transfer cohort community has been amazing because we’re all there for each other,” he says. “We generally group up together in classes to some degree, and it feels like we participate a lot more in classes, too, in terms of raising our hands and just being vocal.”

Before Quick transferred to UMSI, he was a key player at another Ann Arbor institution: Zingerman’s Roadhouse. 

Joey Quick stands on the sidewalk in front of RoosRoast coffee in downtown Ann Arbor, smiling at the camera

As a lead server and administrator, Quick spent eight years ensuring great service both tableside and behind the scenes. His approach was information driven — he created feedback cards for guests and compiled the data each week. Internally, he facilitated a “service group” where staff could exchange tips for guest service and collaborate to enact organizational change.

It’s no surprise, then, that Quick chose UMSI for its people-oriented approach. 

When I spoke to people from UMSI — advisors, students — there was such a personable attitude towards how they went about education,” he says. “I really love the fact that they're into people-oriented solutions and technology — not just, ‘Hey, let’s look at Python and write code.’”

Quick grew up in Ann Arbor and has memories of walking past buildings on the Diag as a child, wondering what was inside. He got his high school diploma at 22 and went on to attend Washtenaw Community College before applying to UMSI.

“It’s super surreal to go to Michigan as a transfer student,” he says. 

Tyra Briscoe (BSI ’24) feels similarly. From Southfield, she never thought U-M was an option until she attended the Community College Summer Institute.

“It really put into perspective for me that I could go to U-M,” she says. “Before, I just completely ruled it out, thinking they weren’t going to accept me. At the outreach program, they made it clear that I was qualified to attend this school and be in this program.” 

Briscoe was earning her associate’s degree in library technical services at Oakland Community College. She was confident that she wanted to become a librarian, so UMSI’s accelerated master’s degree in library science sounded like a great fit for her. 

Tyra Briscoe smiles in front of a flowering bush. She wears a backpack with a duck umbrella in the pocket.

Coming to UMSI, I learned some things I never came across in my research,” Briscoe says. “For example, I now know that there are librarians who focus on UX and accessibility.” She realized this would be the perfect way to combine her BSI in user experience design with her future studies in library science. Now, Briscoe’s goal is “to make library resources accessible to a wide variety of people.”

As a member of the Transfer Student Advisory Board, she is invested in the experiences of fellow transfer students. One of her favorite UMSI memories is of a pizza and game night at the end of her first semester. The event was casual — just an opportunity to relax with her transfer cohort — but it also felt significant. 

“We got to celebrate that we finished off the first semester really strong,” she says. 

National Transfer Student Week will embrace these moments of celebration, while empowering prospective students who might decide — like Briscoe, Quick and Santana-Perez — that UMSI is the right path for them.  

View the full calendar of events:

Tuesday, Oct. 17, 1-2 p.m. EDT
Transferring to UMSI: Is a Bachelor of Science in Information for me? (Virtual) 

with LeAnna Level, assistant director of diversity recruitment and admissions  

Register here

Audience: Prospective students thinking of transferring to UMSI from other institutions

Wednesday, Oct. 18, 11 a.m.-2 p.m.
Transfer Appreciation Lunch (In-Person, Engagement Center)

Audience: Current UMSI new transfer students

Thursday, Oct. 19, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. EDT
Transfer Fair at Washtenaw Community College (In-Person)

with Sandra Lopez, DEI outreach coordinator and Bethany Couts, senior recruiting and admissions coordinator  

Audience: Prospective students thinking of transferring to other universities from Washtenaw Community College

Thursday, Oct. 19, 2-4 p.m. EDT
Coffee, Cookies and Conversation (UMSI Student Lounge, North Quad 1295)  

Audience: Current UMSI new transfer students


 — Abigail McFee, marketing and communications writer