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SOAR FAQs

When is SOAR?

SOAR 2021 will take place in June and/or July. Specific dates will be announced soon!

What happens at SOAR?

The summer-long online orientation consists of

  • Receiving your class schedule
  • Meeting one-on-one with your advisor via Zoom
  • Weekly Spotlight and Facebook Live sessions to address topics such as financial assistance, first-generation students, the Student Success Center and profession-based learning experiences, to name a few
  • Weekly Zoom meetings with representatives from various campus offices for Q&A opportunities
  • Weekly Zoom meetings with your SOAR leader
  • Instagram takeovers @nworientation

The on-campus orientation consists of

  • Programming tracks for students and parent/family members
  • Meeting with your academic advisor and SOAR leader in person
  • Visiting campus and completing outstanding items
  • Interacting with a faculty member from your academic area
  • Connecting with other Bearcats

When do I get my fall class schedule?

You will receive information by email in June about receiving your class schedule and meeting one-on-one with your advisor via Zoom to ask questions and make any necessary changes. If you attend the on-campus orientation, you will also receive a copy of your class schedule and meet with your advisor.

What if I cannot or do not wish to attend any of the on-campus orientation dates?

Please navigate to the Orientation System in CatPAWS and select “Online Orientation” in the “Dates” section. This will ensure you receive information and details about the summer-long online orientation!

What is a SOAR Leader?

You will be placed into groups with other students based on similar majors and interests. SOAR leaders are current Northwest students who know the ins and outs of Northwest life. Your SOAR leader will guide you through the summer-long online orientation, as well as through your on-campus orientation experience if you choose to attend!

Should I bring my family to SOAR?

If possible, your family is encouraged to attend the on-campus orientation with you. Family members also have their own orientation at SOAR to help them become familiar with Northwest’s programs, services and resources. We will also provide opportunities for family members to participate in the summer-long online orientation experience, too!

What should I bring with me to SOAR?

If you have not already submitted them, please bring your completed health history forms. We will provide you with everything else you need for your SOAR day at check-in!

Is there a charge to attend?

SOAR and several other programs are covered by your new student fee. There is no charge to you or your family to attend.

Are there places to spend the night in Maryville?

If you are driving from a long distance, there are several hotels in Maryville that can accommodate you and your family. We encourage you to make reservations early when you receive your SOAR date to ensure that you get a room.

What if I want to change my major or I'm not sure what I want to major in yet?

If you need to change your major, please navigate to the Orientation System in CatPAWS, select “Click here to view or update your registration,” and go to the “Academic Information” page to change your major.

If you haven’t decided on a major, that’s ok too! In fact, some students will tell you that coming to college without a declared major is a positive experience. To help get you on the right track, you are able to choose a meta major from one of four interest areas:
  • Sciences
  • Business
  • Education
  • University Studies

If one of the first three areas listed above don’t fit your interests, you should choose University Studies to allow yourself more time to explore and decide on a major. All students must earn 42 hours of general education credits, so you have some time to make a final decision. It may be helpful to view the list of majors that fall into each meta major listed above- you can find a list online and choose meta major map.

What else do I need to do?

Review your Task List in the Orientation System in CatPAWS to determine outstanding items.

What happens after SOAR?

Save the dates for Advantage 2021: August 14-17, 2021. Advantage is your chance to settle in and explore Northwest.


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