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Transfer Student Recognition Day celebrates connecting to university

Posted on December 9, 2013 | by Kristine Thomason

After a day filled with complimentary breakfast, free yoga class, treat bags, $1 bubble tea and Artichoke Pizza, an award ceremony was held to honor notable transfer students.

The ceremony took place in the Kimmel Center for University Life on Dec. 5 as a conclusion to the second annual Transfer & Transitioning Student Association’s Transfer Student Recognition Day.

“The recognition event, and especially the award ceremony, is meant to serve as an example to the other transfer students,” TTSA vice president and CAS senior Daniel Vasserman said. “We want to show it is possible to have a great experience as a transfer student if you put the time in and make the best of it.”

Senior vice president of Student Affairs Tom Ellett, who was a transfer student himself, opened the ceremony with a speech about the importance of making connections with other students and being open to opportunities.

“You have a short period of time here,” Ellett said in his address. “You will be successful by engaging and getting people involved in your journey.”

After Ellett’s speech, Grace Cohen, Rita Cordero, Kevin Dang, Corinne Heath, Britt Hijkoop, Kovy Katzovitz, Candice Lu, Chris Naing, Khalifa Niasse, Desiree Rivera, Emma Schubert, Sebastian Sdaigui, Kerrin Smith, Ilana Sufrin, James Valencia and Robert Vallejo were recognized. The executive board of TTSA selected the 16 recipients out of 45 nominated students.

“It feels really nice to be recognized, especially at NYU where you always feel like a little fish in a giant ocean,” said CAS senior Valencia, who is a resident assistant at Third North residence hall and an Alternative Breaks leader for the TransferMation trip.

CAS sophomore Vallejo, treasurer of TTSA, was equally surprised by his award.

“It makes me feel like I want to keep giving back to NYU and keep getting involved,” Vallejo said. “I feel like people really appreciate what I’m doing.”

The ceremony included TTSA members and the recognized students, but also friends and family members of the recipients.

CAS junior Komal Patel attended the event to support Lu and to celebrate her motivation to become involved at a different school.

“For a transfer to be so involved is difficult, and it’s important to recognize that initiative,” Patel said.

Steinhardt junior and award-recipient Niasse said Transfer Recognition Day is a tool to make transfers feel welcome and to unite them.

“Most of the time, transfer students feel like we’re isolated,” Niasse said. “This day is important to us because it recognizes transfer students aren’t outcasts. It gives us a chance to feel loved.” 

President of TTSA and CAS senior Alex Coll said she hoped the event will help TTSA continue to grow and give transfer students a sense of community.

“We want to make tradition within the transfer community,” she said. ”It’s a great thing for transfers to look forward to and get involved with.”

Kristine Thomason is a contributing writer. Email her at


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