Why I Chose UAF

Why I Chose to Transfer to UAF

There are a few reasons why I chose to transfer from Bellingham, WA to the University of Alaska Fairbanks. Here are 10 reasons why I decided to change majors, move out of the state and leave my comfort bubble. 

1. I wanted a change

I grew up in Bellingham and attended camps for elementary students when I was younger. I ran cross country for my high school, and we would run on a college campus every day. Being a student in Bellingham wasn't as exciting for me as other first years. I needed a change! I needed to get out of my comfort bubble.

2. I changed my (potential) major from Nursing to Fisheries

My first year as a college student, I thought I was going to be a nurse. Which would have been amazing! Although, I am glad I chose a major that I am very passionate about! I looked up fisheries degrees around the U.S and found that UAF had one of the best programs! I also met some of the fisheries faculty at a booth in Seattle, and they were so excited to meet with me! They made such a good impression on what UAF offers students.

3. UAF seemed incredibly welcoming!

I emailed the academic advisor for the fisheries department, my current professor now, and he was very helpful in informing me about UAF. I visited UAF in March, knowing I would transfer the upcoming fall semester. I was very impressed with the sense of community at UAF. Everyone was super nice and welcoming when I told them I was transferring up here from Washington.

4. I wanted to live in Alaska 

I have always wanted to live in Alaska! I have traveled and worked in the state ever since I was a little girl, and I always felt like Alaska was a lot more calming than the lower 48.

5. I liked the idea of attending a smaller university

UAF has roughly 9,000 students on campus, and I liked the idea of a smaller campus. The student/teacher ratio is 12:1, and I feel like I have better connections with my professors and the faculty here at UAF!

6. Wanted to meet new people

I have the same best friends since elementary school, and we all grew up in Bellingham. I love them so much, but it is nice to enter a new town/city and not know anyone! It's very refreshing and makes you open up more to other people.

7. More independence 

Yup, I feel like I am officially an adult now that I moved out of my home town. I also feel more independent moving out of the state and living in a cabin. I truly believe Alaskans are more independent and hard core than the lower 48.

8. Am I tough enough to survive the cold?!

I was so scared about living in the cold! How would I be able to ski and run outside?! Honestly? It's really not that bad. You just have to dress appropriately for the cold. I am more tough living up here in Fairbanks though! 

9. More inspired with studying and trying new activities

Now that I am in a program that I love, do undergraduate research for my fisheries professor, signed up for clubs on campus, and did volleyball for fun, I am way more inspired to study and try new activities! UAF is amazing at organizing events and involving students! 

10. I knew my friends and family will always be there

Here is the beauty of living away from my friends and family: they will always be there! I was so excited to move to Fairbanks and meet new people and experiment with new hobbies. It is so nice to visit home and see my old friends and family, but it's so important to leave your comfort bubble! UAF is so welcoming that I never really felt homesick.

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