BLOG TOPIC: What to expect at SOAR

Student Orientation, Advising and Registration (SOAR) is a very important part of becoming a BGSU student. At SOAR, students embark on their orientation experience by learning more about the University, meeting with their academic advisers and scheduling classes for their Fall Semester. A lot of students also take this day to meet with their roommate, explore the campus and see where their residence hall is located in relation to their classes. Read what it's like to attend SOAR from students who just attended last year or the year before. AND... If you haven't done so already, make sure you register for SOAR

The student advice on this page was written by Residence Life Student Hall Ambassadors. Their advice is their personal opinions but content has been edited for accuracy. The opinions of these students do not necessarily reflect the opinions of BGSU or the Office of Residence Life. For the most up-to-date information about dates and processes, please go to bgsu.edu/reslife.

Advice from...

Veronica with her friend smiling at the camera. Click to read Veronica's blog post.
Veronica (right)
Photo of Deyante sitting at the park smiling. Click to read Deyante's blog post.
DeYante
Kelsie smiling with her male friend. Click to read Kelsie's blog post.
Kelsie
Photo of Sara playing a board game. Click to read Sara's blog post.
Sara
Photo of Mariah smiling at the camera. Click to read Mariah's blog post.
Mariah
Photo of Hayden smiling at the camera. Click to read Hayden's blog post.
Hayden
Photo of Kaylee taking a picture of herself. Click to read Kaylee's blog post.
Kaylee
Photo of Brad outside smiling at the camera. Click to read Brad's blog post.
Brad

VERONICA MENENDEZ
Kohl Hall Ambassador . Class of 2022 . Cincinnati, Ohio . Business Major .

SOAR is where you will get a glimpse of what college is all about. You meet so many people, take a tour around campus, eat in a dining hall, meet the Dean of your college, meet your academic advisor, see where you are going to live, etc. SOAR is an exciting time but it is high paced. You will do many important things, such as schedule your classes and receive lots of valuable information that will help make your transition to college smoother.

My first piece of advice is to make sure you wear comfortable shoes to walk in since it will be a long day that consists of lots of walking. Also, make sure to bring a notebook and pen/pencil so you will be able to take notes of important information and dates that are provided to you throughout the day.

My second piece of advice is to make sure you have enough time to visit the residence halls because when I attended SOAR, I spent too much time scheduling classes and looking at the Bowen-Thompson Student Union. I did not have enough time to see a room or the layout of Kohl Hall, which saddens me because looking at where you are going to live is very important so you are aware of all the logistics of your room. 

Make sure you plan out your day to the hour because it is a full day that consists of many great opportunities and it is your responsibility to take the opportunities that benefit you the most. There is so much to do, you will not be able to do it all at SOAR.

Lastly, when you attend SOAR be open-minded. You will receive lots of information so be open to receive the information and ask questions. The student leaders and staff at SOAR are there to help you, so use them to the best of your advantage because they are there as a resource to you. Through these tips and advice, I can guarantee you that you will have an amazing and memorable college orientation at BGSU! Go Falcons!


DEYANTE JOHNSON
Kreischer Hall Ambassador . Class of 2022 . Columbus, Ohio . Business Major .

SOAR can be quite exciting since it is the first day where you can get a better sense of how Bowling Green State University is set up. This is not only a campus tour, you get to spend the day at BGSU, learn about the campus, and many other things.

The day is full of presentations and activities where all your questions about living on campus will be answered. You and your guardian will not be together the whole time because you each will have different meetings with different faculty throughout the day. They go to presentations just like you and talk about different things like the cost of college, but you will eventually meet up with them again.

You will get your BGSU ID everyone always talks about when you visit. I recommend either sending in a picture before you come or come picture ready when you are going to attend SOAR. I didn’t do either of these things. I had a hat on the day of my SOAR and in my picture it showed! You also get to build your schedule for the fall semester.

There will be advisors to help you decide what classes to take; these advisors are typically students so they were in your shoes before and can help you fill your schedule to better suit your needs.

You will also be given a free meal swipe to one of the dining halls on campus. I went to Carillon during my SOAR which was awesome because I love food and Carillon has so many different food options.

Your SOAR day can be very long and full of information, but just know all this information will help you prepare for what to expect during your first year and is one of the most memorable days.


KELSIE VAILLANT
Offenhauer Towers Hall Ambassador . Class of 2021 . Toledo, Ohio . VCT Major

SOAR is probably the most important day before you come to BGSU. Most of the day is information about campus and getting to know people within your graduating class. You will have an orientation leader take you around that day and guide you through activities to bond with people. That's was how I met my best friend! We both connected over having the same major.

For my SOAR, I remember having to wake up super early to get to BGSU for a long day. I had both my parents go because I was super nervous about it and they wanted to know more information about Financial Aid and other stuff. It is up to you if you want your parents to go or not. I recommend you bring at least one person, so you have a second person hearing the information. That way when you go home that night and you're trying to remember what they said about housing or money, you have another person who heard the information as well.

The most important part of the day is getting your BGSU ID and creating your fall classes. Your BGSU ID is something you will use throughout college whether you live on or off campus. It is used to get into the dining halls, print paper and to pick-up packages. You will be creating your first college class schedule with your advisor. A big tip I have for you is make sure you have an idea of where most of the buildings are on campus. When I first scheduled my classes, I scheduled back-to-back classes that were on opposite sides of campus because I didn’t know building names. There should be somebody there to help you schedule classes so like I said before if you have a question do not hesitate to ask.

SOAR is a very important day before you start your first semester of college, so schedule it as early as you can. It is okay to be nervous and scared because I know I was for mine. Just be prepared to have a long day, ask questions, and have fun scheduling your classes. Good luck!


SARA JURKIEWICZ
Founders Hall Ambassador . Class of 2022 . Sylvania, Ohio . Physics Major .

Your first question is probably what SOAR stands for. It stands for Students Orientation, Advising & Registration. A lot of information is given during SOAR, so it is very important that you attend and ask a lot of questions because students and staff will be there to assist you. There are many sessions starting in fall through the summer to fit with your schedule, but I recommend an earlier session if possible to get used to campus sooner. 

I attended SOAR on July 5, which was one of the last SOAR dates. When I arrived I checked-in, received a folder with my academic information and other information on BGSU, and a name tag with my college on it. At the time, I was a part of the Deciding Student Program. At the end of the welcome speech, all of the students were separated into their registered college. In those groups, we did ice breakers, a tour of campus, had lunch at Carillon dining hall, and met our college advisor.

After that, we were free to explore by ourselves. During that time, you have your BGSU ID photo taken and pick it up a bit later. With that in mind, this photo will be used for however long you are a student at BGSU along with the card you receive.

As for what to bring, it's not much. I brought my wallet, the provided parking pass, and a snack. I would also recommend bringing a water bottle and wearing comfy shoes because Ohio is warm that time of year and you will be doing a lot of walking.

Embrace the day because you will be learning a lot of valuable information, selecting your class schedule and meeting many people. Some of the people you meet may be in your college or in the same residence hall as you, so talk to as many people as you can.


MARIAH GROW
Falcon Heights Hall Ambassador . Class of 2021 . Ashtabula, Ohio . Biology Major

Oh, SOAR - Student Orientation, Advising and Registration - what a time. SOAR is such an amazing experience, because unlike any other visit this is the first one where you really become a Bowling Green State University Falcon.  SOAR is such an eventful day and as hectic as it all sounds; it is one of the best days at BGSU before becoming a student.

You will receive your BGSU ID and class schedule for the Fall, you will sit in a seminar for first-year students, you may even meet your advisor or the dean of your college if you declared a major, you will most likely attend a seminar for your college, you may be meeting your roommate for the first time, you may be meeting with Financial Aid, you will learn about the security on campus, and you will probably take a tour of campus. The staff will do everything to answer questions, they will even separate you from your parents for different types of information. This provides you with an opportunity to be surrounded with students coming in at the same time who will probably have similar fears and questions. You will get lunch and you will play games; you will have a lot of summer fun before moving in.

SOAR is the best time to rid yourself of pre-college jitters, at this point you know you are going to Bowling Green State University and now you can get any questions that have been weighing on your mind, off of it, and both you and your parents get the chance to take a step back and not feel so overwhelmed about you being here. I am not saying that all of your anxiety will go away at SOAR, but a big chunk of it will not seem so big anymore. This is the time to step back and breathe, the process of getting here is coming to an end, no major paperwork needs to be filed, and now you can enjoy the ride.


HAYDEN WEBER
McDonald Hall Ambassador . Class of 2022 . Defiance, Ohio . Education Major .

Wow! Is it almost time for you to attend SOAR?!? It is remarkable that my first-year has come to and end, but your beginning is just about to start! SOAR is an important factor in becoming a BGSU Falcon. The reason is SOAR is where you meet people within the same major as you and it is also where you, a first year Falcon, will register for your fall classes! SOAR is full of so many amazing things to do, you will learn a lot, and do a lot.

As you may recall, Preview days and Falcon Fridays were full of presentations and walking. I will make it aware that you will have to do this all over again, but this time the presentations are more for the parents. You will be walking around with an orientation leader around campus. Your orientation leader will take you and a group of other students around campus and have you do ice breakers so you can get to know other people in the same graduating class as you. This will also be the time where you can get that final look at your residence hall before move-in day in the fall, so I would take full advantage of it.

SOAR is also the day where you complete a lot of final necessities before move-in day (i.e. scheduling classes and getting your BGSU I.D.). Once your orientation leader drops you off in your respective college, you will meet with your advisor for another presentation and then you will meet one-on-one to schedule your fall semester classes. Now, scheduling classes may seem a bit scary because you have no idea what the classes are and what they really mean, but your advisor is there for you to make it as smooth as possible.

For Education majors, one thing to keep in mind is that as an Education major you are required to receive a background check. During your SOAR date you can mark that off your check list like I did during SOAR. In the back of Falcon Outfitters you can fill out all the information you need to for your background check!

The final and most important thing to do at your SOAR date is to get your BGSU I.D. Your BGSU I.D. will be the one thing that you need at all times when living on campus and your SOAR date is when you will receive that! So the one thing you cannot forget on your SOAR date is to get you BGSU I.D!


Photo of Kaylee taking a picture of herself.

KAYLEE KOVACH
Conklin Hall Ambassador . Class of 2022 . Minerva, Ohio . Business Major . 

SOAR is the first day where you really get to experience Bowling Green State University. You aren’t going on a little campus tour, you actually get to spend the day on campus for the majority of the day. This day is full of presentations where all your questions are answered and SOAR was when I met a lot of my current best friends. 

For my SOAR, I brought my mom because I knew I was going to be very nervous. You and whoever you bring will not spend a large part of the day together. There are different presentations for students and parents, but you will meet-up again throughout the day. You will also get your BGSU ID everyone always talks about when you visit. Your BGSU ID is one of the most important things you receive because you will use it every single day.

You get to build your schedule for the fall semester. Building your schedule for your first semester can sound scary, but there are plenty of advisors and upperclass students there to help advise you and support you. Later in the day, you can use your free meal coupon at Carillon or The Oaks which will help you get a feel for the foods you will have available to you everyday when living on campus.

I was unable to go to SOAR with my roommate because of a vacation and work schedule, but if you are able to go with yours it would be a good day to meet with them and spend the day getting to know them more. Even though I could not go the same day as my roommate, when I was there I met a lot of people. We all exchanged Snapchats and talked all summer long. Now it is the second semester of our first year of college and we all still talk almost everyday and are all still really good friends. So don’t be nervous to reach out and sit next to the people who look like they are alone at SOAR because they have the potential to be a good friend in the future or if not at least someone to get through the long day with.

Overall, SOAR can seem like a scary day to a lot of people because there is so much going on and you are learning all of this information. It may seem scary, but everyone is so friendly, helpful and really made my SOAR experience memorable and enjoyable.


Photo of Brad outside smiling at the camera.

BRAD SILLIMAN
Centennial Hall Ambassador . Class of 2022 . Mansfield, Ohio . Education Major .

Arriving at SOAR is one of the most exciting times before coming to college. I would recommend going to the earliest date possible as it gives you better luck with selecting classes.

When I first got there my parents and I went into a large room with a lot of tables set up. Most of these tables were groups and other organizations on campus, and after looking around for a bit we all sat down for a presentation. They talked to us for a while, and then split parents and students up.

Students separated by major and went around campus in small groups with our Orientation Leader. We played quite a few icebreakers, and it is a wonderful place to make your first college friends. You get to eat at one of the dining halls and we toured around campus. We went through a few things like getting your BG ID and scheduling for classes. Because I am an education major, my group also went and took care of our background checks we need for classes. I got to eat with my friends I made at the Carillon and it was a really fun bonding experience.