You don’t plan on staying here forever: Mt. SAC hosts TransferCon 2023

TransferCon provides the tips and tricks to get you where you want to go


Christie Yeung

Students and speakers alike are getting ready for TransferCon to begin.

TransferCon 2023 kicked off on Wednesday, May 3, outside Building 13. The eventful day’s check-in began at 8:30 a.m. followed by welcome sessions with keynote speakers, then workshops throughout the day and ended with a raffle at the closing ceremony. 

Volunteers helping students to check in to TransferCon.  (Christie Yeung)

According to the Transfer Center, 260 people registered for the event and 156 students actually attended. After checking in, attendees were given goodie bags that included the event agenda, a Transfer Center brochure, two Mt. SAC stickers, a note pad and a pen.

Students line up to get breakfast.  (Christie Yeung)

Free breakfast burritos were served along with orange juice and coffee. Hungry students were getting some breakfast before the welcoming session started at 9 a.m.

Transfer specialist Perla Partida starting the welcome session to kick start TransferCon 2023. (Christie Yeung)

At the welcome session, Transfer Specialist Perla Partida greeted all the attendees and introduced the Dean of the Counseling Department Francisco Dorame and keynote speakers Mt. SAC alumni Daniel Garcia and Dinna Felix, counselor and coordinator of the Achieving in College, Ensuring Success program at Mt. SAC.

Dean of the Counseling Department Francisco Dorame made an appearance at TransferCon. (Christie Yeung)

Dorame gave a brief speech and welcomed attendees before handing the microphone to the first keynote speaker, Garcia.

Mt. SAC alumni Daniel Garcia is the first of two keynote speakers at the welcome session.  (Christie Yeung)

Garcia gave a powerful speech on his path in becoming a Mountie, his experience as at the school and his journey after transferring from Mt. SAC.

Garcia talked about the academic challenges he faced and how what he learned in Mt. SAC got him through those hard times. For example, when he was at the University of California, Santa Cruz, he struggled with going to class and self-doubt about what to do and where to go. 

He would say to himself, “I can and I will.” 

This is the model that he learned from Mt. SAC which he carries with him always. His bond with Mt. SAC never fades. 

“… Once you have the Cal State [University], once you’re at the UC or that private institution, you are leaving Mt. SAC with the values, the laughter, the joys, the emotions that you’ve been through here like Mt. SAC have left an impression on you and you have its marks here,” Garcia said.

He left pieces of advice during his time on the stage, one being to, “Always make sure that you remember where you come from, how you can help others and just know that you’re not alone in the process.”

Mt. SAC ACES Counselor and Coordinator Diana Felix is the second keynote speaker at the welcome session.  (Christie Yeung)

Afterward, Felix introduced herself as a proud Chicana and took the stage with a presentation titled “My Transfer Historia” to represent her roots.

As the firstborn of Mexican immigrants, she understands the struggles, stresses and pressure of low-income, first-generation transfer students. She has to be the pioneer and set an example for her siblings and cousins.

Mt. SAC ACES Counselor and Coordinator Diana Felix shares many pieces of advice for transfer students.  (Christie Yeung)

She suggested students start thinking about the path ahead.

“… If you’re sitting here today and you really haven’t looked into transferring or don’t believe, don’t know much about it, walk right into the transfer center,” Felix said. “They’re amazing and they’ll break everything down for you.”

Aside from the Transfer Center, she also talked about the other resources on campus, like the ACES program. 

Workshops sessions started shortly after the welcome session was over. There were four workshops in each session.

The first session focused on transferring as a whole, with workshops titled “Transitioning from a Mountie to a University Student,” “Transfer 101,” “Transfer Admission Guarantee (TAG)” and “Understanding Major vs. Career.”

Transfer Specialist Krystle Bybee transfer guarantees for students. (Christie Yeung)

Transfer specialist Krystle Bybee was the speaker for the “Transfer Admission Guarantee (TAG)” workshop. She explained what it means and how transfer students who fulfilled the requirements would be guaranteed admission to a participating CSU or UC. 

Mt. SAC’s Completion Center Counselor Jesse Lopez explains the relationship between earning a major’s associate degree and getting a job in related fields. (Christie Yeung)

Completion Center Counselor Jesse Lopez hosted the “Understanding Major vs. Career” workshop to explain to students the relationship between major and career and how a certificate or associate degree makes a difference.  

Cal Poly Pomona Admission Counselor Jazmine Flores stays to answer questions after speaking at the “Transitioning from a Mountie to a University Student” workshop. (Christie Yeung)

Cal Poly Pomona Admission Counselor Jazmine Flores was one of the speakers for the “Transitioning from a Mountie to a University Student,” and she stayed after the workshop to answer questions for potential Cal Poly Pomona Broncos.

The second session was titled “We Need YOU in the Transfer Party,” which included workshops “I Can and I will as A Parenting Scholar,” “The BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color)/Latinx Transfer Experience,” “Non-Traditional is the NEW Traditional” and “First-Gen and Proud.” Each supports a different group of students.

Aside from workshops, there were also booths that served different purposes at TransferCon, including representatives from UCLA and American Indian Recruitment to answer questions. 

Representatives from the Center for Community College Partnerships and the American Indian Recruitment hold a booth to answer questions. (Christie Yeung)

There were also fun and games at the event.

Attendees gather around Transfer Specialist Krystle Bybee in hope to win some prizes. (Christie Yeung)

Bybee explained to attendees the rule for spin-the-wheel. The player would have to spin the wheel that had questions written on it and answer correctly to get a gift bag. 

Transfer Specialist Krystle Bybee awaits the correct answer from a participant. (Christie Yeung)

After two sessions, lunch was served outside Building 13, the lunch box included a sandwich, a bag of chips, a pasta salad and two cookies. 

Attendees pick up complimentary lunch before the second half of workshop sessions begins. (Christie Yeung)

Tents, tables and chairs were set up for students to enjoy their lunch and the sun outdoors. 

Besides enjoying the food, attendees also spend time relaxing and socializing. (Christie Yeung)

Everyone had an hour to enjoy their lunch before two more sessions and the closing ceremony to wrap up the day. 

The third session of the day included “Mt. SAC Scholarship Program,” “Financial Aid at the University,” “Pizza with Private Schools” and “Career Services Overview & Revamp your Resume.”

Mt. SAC’s Career Specialist Cristina Martinez talks about the career services that Mt. SAC offers. (Christie Yeung)

Mt. SAC Career Specialist Cristina Martinez was the speaker for the “Career Services Overview & Revamp your Resume” workshop. She explained in-depth what Career Services has to offer and covered writing a resume. 

Mt. SAC’s Inreach/Outreach Financial Aid Specialist Paola Gutierrez Flores speaks at the “Mt. SAC Scholarship Program” workshop. (Christie Yeung)

Mt. SAC Inreach/Outreach Financial Aid Specialist Paola Gutierrez Flores hosted the “Mt. SAC Scholarship Program” workshop to explain the different scholarships and financial aid opportunities in Mt. SAC.

Mt. SAC’s Inreach/Outreach Financial Aid Specialist Paola Gutierrez Flores talks about California Dream Act. (Christie Yeung)

Although TransferCon was packed with information for future transfer students, it was also a time to celebrate those that had decided to move on. 

Transfer specialist Perla Partida poses with a student who will be transferring to Cal Holy Pomona at the photo booth. (Christie Yeung)