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One of the things to consider is not only how many credits will transfer to the 4 year institution, but how many courses transfer TOWARDS YOUR MAJOR. You may transfer all of your courses, but you may end up with more elective hours than you need. Since the school you transfer to determines how courses will transfer in, check with the 4 year institution to see if they have a course equivalency match book for your Community College. You are already on the right path by planning and researching for the right school for you. Best Wishes!
I wound up doing that myself about 8 years ago. I researched locations first, and found schools in those areas to look into. Then I created different searches for schools based on my sport, based on the major I wanted, based on campus life, etc. After I did several different searches online, I compared my results and looked for any overlap. It was a lot of research, but it was worth it. I am so glad I got a change of scenery!
The first thing I would do is talk to an academic counselor at your community college, and if possible talk to a counselor at the career center if there is one just to see if they can provide any insight before you get started on your search. Some questions I would ask is if there are any reputable programs tailored to your major and your goals. Next do some broad research through google for example: 'top (such and such major) school on the east coast. Start visiting their college websites and deeply researching and exploring the programs. Do not feel shy to send a cordial, professional message to a faculty member of interest who might be able to provide you with information about the program.
You can use assist.org to find out what are the course prerequisites for the program (so that you may transfer units between schools). Be aware of any minimum unit requirements, and whether certain classes you have will transfer to the prospective school. Try to be as diligent as possible about doing the research for the school program, location, cost of living, quality of life, and financial aid outlook. If you are going to a school 3000 miles away you don't want to set foot on campus to suddenly be in a place that you do not really want to be.
The next step is to begin the application process. I would apply to several schools, in fact when I applied for Graduate School I sent out 9 applications. Try to narrow down to a top 5-10 so that your chances for ending up where you want to be will be greater. If you are offered acceptance I would strongly suggest visiting the campus(es) in person to make sure it is a good fit. Research, research, research.