What is the USC Trojan Transfer Plan?

By Maxine Seya

USC, University of Southern California, not University of South Carolina, accepted only 12% of applicants for the Class of 2025. Justice Wooden was one of them. It wasn’t an easy path for him. “I was also working a job on the weekends, dancing over 35 hours every week, and I ran a club every week. I only took seven AP classes throughout my high school journey, and I think that that’s too many,” Justice said. What if your student didn’t toil over schoolwork and extracurriculars in high school, and didn’t take the most rigorous courses or earn the best grades? After all, the middle 50% Fall ’21 admits earned an unweighted GPA between 3.83 and 4.0 and an ACT score between 32 and 35… basically close to perfect. If your student wants to be a Trojan, but doesn’t make the cut, can they still get into USC? It’s possible. Enter the USC Trojan Transfer Plan. This is a lesser-known admission decision offered to select freshmen applicants who do not get admitted.

What’s the Trojan Transfer Plan?

The USC Trojan Transfer Plan allows unsuccessful applicants to USC to attend a different college or university as a freshman, follow USC guidance on transfer prep work, and eventually matriculate to USC as a sophomore. Unlike a traditional transfer application process in which applicants cannot easily predict the outcome, the USC Trojan Transfer Plan or TTP gives its students stronger confidence that they will eventually get accepted as a transfer student. In 2020-2021, the USC transfer acceptance rate was 26.8%, significantly higher than the 16.1% freshmen acceptance rate in the same admissions cycle.

Does the USC Trojan Transfer Plan guarantee transfer admission?

No. Even students who are offered the TTP may still be denied admission if they do not meet the requisite criteria, including coursework and GPA.

For Fall 2021 TTP students, USC can say with a high degree of certainty that they will earn a transfer seat if they:

  • Complete 30+ transferable semester units, earning As and Bs
  • Achieve a minimum 3.6 GPA in courses transferable to USC
  • Complete a pre-approved writing course and Intermediate Algebra
  • Take 2+ general education classes
  • Take any lower-division courses for your student’s major

Note: According to the Franklin University in Switzerland, another USC TTP partner, students need to achieve a 3.5 GPA.

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Maxine Seya
Maxine Seya is a former investigative journalist, college consultant, and admissions interviewer. She studied at Peking University (Beijing, China) and Université Paul-Valéry (Montpellier, France) and investigated for CNN and Huffington Post before graduating from Northwestern University. She founded SocratesPost to share the human stories behind the admission gates and offer parents clarity as they help their teens with college.