The Princeton Transfer Community, A Shining Example of Campus Diversity

November 9, 2023
Brenden Garza

If there is a single way I would describe the Princeton transfer community, it is as a collection of the most diverse and interesting people I have ever met. Princeton prides itself on bringing together talented individuals from across the nation and even the globe, and I believe this is most evident with the transfer students here on campus. If you’re wondering about the many experiences and identities represented in the transfer community, you’ve come to the right place:

To start, many in the transfer program come from community colleges. California or Florida, Illinois or New York, transfers from community colleges all across the country are here at Princeton; many completed their associates degrees before transferring. There are even a number of international students who attended community colleges in the United States before applying here. Regardless of which community college they went to, all of our transfers were dedicated to their studies and took on leadership roles within their schools and communities, and demonstrated the qualities Princeton looks for in all its applicants. 

Many transfers are also United States military veterans. Five out of the six branches are represented in the transfer community, and even within that group, there is a diversity in background of the veterans. Some veterans were special forces before Princeton, with careers spanning decades, and others served a single enlistment or two as Infantry in the Army, with numerous others in between. The veteran community at Princeton is especially tight-knit, and has welcomed international veterans with open arms as well.

One of the unique qualities of our community is the kinds of life experiences and accomplishments that many transfers have brought to Princeton. Many veterans obviously bring a rigorous and intensive experience with them, and many have shown an equal commitment to their studies here as they did to their service. Other transfers have had full-fledged careers prior to community college--in the arts and media industries, theater, activism, and many more. A significant number of transfers also come from low-income and racially diverse backgrounds, and our community has worked hard to ensure that such students are supported and heard by the University at large. All in all, Princeton’s transfer community is one unlike many others here at Princeton, and we are always excited to see how our community will grow with each new transfer cohort.

From public office-holders to poets, filmmakers to military veterans, the transfer program at Princeton has sought to invest in the talents and abilities of individuals who have taken the roads less traveled and has enabled them to take full advantage of the resources and opportunities at Princeton.


19 transfer students dressed formally pose in front of a campus gothic archway
A few of our members together for headshots!