The first day of classes is still more than two months away, but UNCG is welcoming future Spartans and their families to campus with open arms for SOAR.

More than 4,000 incoming freshman and transfer students will make their way to campus in the coming weeks for the program, which stands for Spartan Orientation, Advising and Registration.

The eight two-day sessions provide future students with an opportunity to get familiar with UNCG’s campus, learn more about programs, get to know faculty and staff, meet with their advisors and build relationships with their future classmates. There are also four one-day sessions for transfer and adult students throughout the summer.

“It was a great experience,” said Nick Adams, who took part in the June 6-7 session and plans to major in kinesiology. “It made me more familiar with the campus and the people I’ll be in classes with.”

“I thought it would be awkward, but it was like I knew everyone,” added Ana Martinas.

She said it was the Spartan Orientation Staff who really made SOAR special. “Everyone seems so nice and energetic.”

Spartan Orientation Staff greet the students and their families with smiles and cheers, answer questions and lead small groups throughout SOAR.

Grant Harris, a rising sophomore and member of the Spartan Orientation Staff, said he wanted to be part of SOAR because of his own experiences last year.

“When I came to SOAR, our Spartan Orientation Staff made me more comfortable with coming to UNCG and I was less apprehensive afterwards.”

SOAR isn’t just for incoming students, however. Parents and guardians play an active role in the experience as well, attending sessions on student services, financial aid and other important topics.

“It was interesting learning the different things offered at UNCG. Knowing that my child is going to be taken care of is important to me,” said Yolanda Jackson, whose daughter, Bethany, plans to major in education.

There are six more SOAR sessions scheduled for this summer for incoming freshmen: June 12-13, 14-15, 16-17, 20-21, 23-24 and 27-28. An additional session will be held in August.

Story by Jeanie McDowell,  University Relations
Photography by Martin W. Kane, University Relations