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SOAR program gives GS students real experience


June 02, 2017

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During summer break, few students like to think about school. They relax or get a job and forget about academics. But things are different for Georgia Southern’s incoming freshmen. They aren't just thinking about college – they're experiencing it.
Eight two-day sessions of Southern’s Orientation, Advisement and Registration (SOAR) began June 1 and will run once weekly through the week of July 17. The orientation sessions allow incoming students to experience GSU up close and personal. The program, which is mandatory, allows students to speak with their advisors, register for classes and find out what student life is really like – or at least get a glimpse of how they will spend their time as a college student.
The office of Orientation, Advisement and Registration goal is to give incoming students a feel for Georgia Southern and become a part of the GS family when they return in the fall.
“SOAR has been a big help. All the sessions emphasize important things, and they answer all your questions,” said incoming freshman Glenda Harris, a Maryland native planning on majoring in Sports Medicine. "It gives you a good look into the actual college experience."
Making incoming students feel at home is a top priority for the SOAR program. Students experience dorm life as they spend the night on campus in Centennial Place. They attend multiple presentations from various departments and student groups, and can ask current students acting as SOAR leaders any other questions they might have.    

SOAR leaders complete two weeks of intensive training before the program begins, so they can answer any question that may come up.
Incoming students who participate in SOAR generally believe the program is informative and will ease their transition from high school to college.
“It’s been really organized in explaining what’s going to happen in the fall,” said Christian Huban, who plans to major in physics and chemistry, “It helped explain how college life is going to be different from high school.”
Although they don’t spend much time together during the program, parents are encouraged to attend SOAR along with their child. Various presentations intended for parents answer questions related to their child’s experience.


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