SOAR Frequently Asked Questions

We understand you may have some questions about new student orientation (SOAR) so we have compiled the questions we hear most frequently and added them to this page. If you don't find what you need. Please contact our office at 419-372-0353 or orientation@bgsu.edu.

How do I register for SOAR?

Log in to your MyBGSU* > New Student: Orientation > Orientation Reservation

The Orientation Reservation link will take you to the registration page and show all available orientation dates. Follow the prompts to complete your registration.

*If you have not set up your MyBGSU account, you can do so by going to bgsu.edu/newaccount and using you BGSU ID number to register.


Will SOAR be virtual or in-person?

We are offering both virtual and in-person SOAR days this summer. Both will offer the same informational sessions and opportunities to connect with faculty, staff and current students. If you register for SOAR and then change your mind about which format you would like to attend, you can contact us at orientation@bgsu.edu or 419-372-0353 and we’ll help you change your date. 


Can I change my date?

While you may change your selected SOAR date after completing the reservation, please be aware that dates are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Each SOAR date has a limited amount of space for students so that we can best serve you and provide individualized attention. To guarantee your preferred date, please try to reserve a date that works for you. If you have any questions, please contact us at orientation@bgsu.edu or 419-372-0353.


What happens at SOAR?

At SOAR, you will have an opportunity to connect with current students, as well as staff members, and get to know some of your new fellow Falcons. You will be connected with an Orientation Leader who will guide you through your SOAR experience and continue to be a resource throughout the summer and Fall Welcome.

You will also be able to take care of some important “to-do” list items such as finalizing your financial aid and billing and getting your BG1 card. We will also provide opportunities for campus tour and residence hall tours.

At SOAR, you’ll meet new people and make friends. The social aspect of University life allows students to feel like they belong. It’s important for students connect with their Orientation Leaders, get familiar with the campus and participate in activities that will help them forge a bond with other first-year students. It is this sense of belonging that will be the foundation of successful students.

Moving to a completely different place without the safety net of having family nearby can cause great anxiety for students. At SOAR, we will provide you with information about things like the physical locations of different student services, safety on campus and what you can expect from living in the area. Keeping in mind to include those staying in residential halls, commuters and students living locally.

Of course, the main reason students attend college is to learn and earn a degree! SOAR helps you with the first steps toward academic success. It’s essential to cultivate a relationship between students and their Life Design Coach by focusing on creating intentional time to discover BGSU. When you are comfortable with your Life Design Coach, you will be more likely to reach out for help and guidance to steer clear from failure.


Do I have to complete the orientation modules?

Yes, every first-year student is expected to complete the orientation modules. These modules will provide really important information about life at BGSU and will complement your SOAR experience. The online modules can be completed at your own pace, and you can refer back to them throughout the summer and your first semester. You can learn more on our Orientation Modules web page.

Please note: the orientation modules are different than virtual SOAR. Regardless if you attend SOAR in-person or virtually, you are required to complete all five modules.


How and when will I get my fall semester class schedule?

An academic advisor will begin to build your fall semester schedule before you attend SOAR and your fall semester schedule will be completed two weeks after you have attend SOAR. An academic advisor may reach out to you before or after SOAR as they work on your schedule.


When can I register for SOAR?

Registration opened for new student orientation on Monday, Feb. 1 and remains open through our final session on July 29.
Register for SOAR


How long is SOAR?

In-Person SOAR:

  • 8-9:30 a.m. | Check-in
  • 8-10 a.m. | Attend optional open houses and other opportunities to connect with faculty, staff and current students. 
  • 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. | Our required programming for all students and families will begin promptly at 10 a.m. We will have a full day planned for you, so you should expect to be on campus until approximately 6 p.m.

Virtual SOAR:

  • 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.* | Our required programming for Virtual SOAR will begin promptly on Zoom at 10 a.m. EST. There will be a variety of sessions, opportunities to connect with staff and Orientation Leaders, and time to get your questions answered. We’ll wrap up around 4:00pm. *There will be plenty of breaks throughout the day.

Should someone participate in SOAR with me?

We recommend having at least one parent/family member/guest participate in SOAR with you; however, it is not required. Some sessions offered will be specifically for parents/family members/guests.


Does SOAR cost money?

SOAR is free for the incoming student. Because of COVID-19, we have waived the guest fee for 2021 SOAR – this is a one-time guest fee waiver. You still must register your guests for in-person SOAR so that we have an accurate count. We will reach out to you ahead of your SOAR day to confirm your plans to bring guests.


What travel accommodations are offered?

If you are traveling from out of town, you may consider the following accommodations: Best Western Falcon Plaza Hotel, Hampton Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Days Inn, or an on-campus Residence Hall

SOAR Travel & Accommodations


What should I bring with me to SOAR?

You and your family will receive welcome packets in the mail about three weeks before your SOAR day. This packet contains a list of suggested items to bring. If you are attending SOAR in-person, this packet will also include a parking pass and campus map. A digital copy of the packets will be accessible at www.bgsu.edu/newstudent. You will also need to bring a form of photo ID to obtain your BG1 card.


How can I change my major?

If you have not started your SOAR reservation process, you can change your major when you log into the system. If you have already chosen a date for SOAR, you can contact us at orientation@bgsu.edu or 419-372-0353.


What dates are offered for SOAR?

On the SOAR homepage, you can find a full list of the SOAR dates. When you are ready to register for SOAR, only currently available dates will appear for you to select. Reservations are held on a first-come, first-served basis.

SOAR Schedule


What if I’m a Firelands Student?

If you are a BGSU Firelands Student, you will attend SOAR at BGSU Firelands, not main campus. You can contact BGSU Firelands at 419-372-0886. If you are a Firelands Pathway student, you will attend SOAR on main campus.


What if I’m transferring from Firelands Campus?

If you are transferring from Firelands, you are not required to attend SOAR; however, it is highly recommended that you do. Should you choose not to attend, you will need to make an appointment to schedule your classes for fall semester.


What about Firelands Pathway?

If you are in the Firelands Pathway Program, you will attend SOAR on main campus.
Register for Firelands Pathway


What if I cannot attend any of the listed orientation sessions?

We understand that students have jobs and other obligations during the summer; however, SOAR is required for all incoming first-year students. You must choose one of the many sessions of SOAR being offered. If you cannot make any of the SOAR dates work with your schedule, contact us at orientation@bgsu.edu or 419-372-0353.


I am in the military and am unable to attend any of the dates.

If you are in the military and unable to attend any of the offered SOAR dates, please contact us at orientation@bgsu.edu or 419-372-0353 to discuss additional options.


What if I need special accommodations?

Accommodations can be made for students and/or guests who have a special need. Requests can be made in the “Special Accommodations” section of the reservation form or by contacting us at orientation@bgsu.edu or 419-372-0353.

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