SOAR Frequently Asked Questions

Getting ready to SOAR? Here are some common questions.

Here we’ve answered some common questions about SOAR. If you need more information, you may contact the Director of the SOAR Program.

Who will be there?
What happens at SOAR?SOAR
Why should parents/guardian attend?
What about siblings and other family members?
Can I arrive late or leave early, do I need to attend the entire day?
What if I'm an international student?
Should I contact Disability Services in advance?
What does SOAR cost?
What if I need overnight lodging?
What should I bring? What should I wear?
How do I register?

Who will be there?

Each SOAR session includes 140 new students who will be assigned to an academic advising group of 10-12 members. This allows personal interaction with the faculty adviser and other administrative staff members. Parents engage with other parents in staff-led discussions regarding Albion College services and support networks.  Discussions will explore academic and extracurricular life at Albion College.

What happens at SOAR?

The SOAR program acquaints new students with the campus and the academic curriculum. In small groups, students will work directly with faculty members and other advising staff. The primary focus is developing a class schedule and registering for fall classes. Students will meet with departmental faculty representatives, including the directors of our Institutes, Centers, and Programs.  More detailed schedules for students and parents are also available on our SOAR day schedule.

Why should parents/guardian attend?

Whether thi sis the first time you are sending someone to college or your last child leaving home, we want to work as partners to help your student have a positive college experience.  At SOAR for Parents and Families, you wil be able to discuss Albion's academic programs with our faculty and get insights on campus life from our administrative staff.   You will learn about our expectations of student engagement on campus and about problem solving strageties you and your student can pursue.  

Of course, the parent/family portion of the SOAR program is optional.

What about siblings or other family members?

We welcome family members.  However, we do not offer a separate program for younger children or day care service.  

Can I arrive late or leave early, do I need to spend the entire day?

The SOAR program is tightly programmed and every momen'ts packed with information.  All new students are required to participate from the program's beginning at 9:30 AM until is completion around 5:00 PM.  If you arrive significantly late or leave early it will be impossible to advise you correctly and complete your registratio for classes.   If you have a concfluct that causes you to arrive late or leave early, our best suggestion is to select another SOAR session date.  If you have registered and need to switch your date (subject to availability), please contact the SOAR staff at 517/629-0433.

What if I'm an international student?

All new students must attend a SOAR program. International students and American students from overseas schools are encouraged to attend the August 21 session. It includes a special orientation program that starts with van pick-up service at the Detroit Metropolitan Airport on Thursday evening, August 14. For additional information, please contact the Center for International Education at 517/629-0307 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

Should I contact Disability Services in advance?

To support you to the best of our abilities, please contact the Disabilities Service Office during the summer before your first fall semester.   Our staff will work with you to make appropriate arrangments and deveop a plan for your first academic term.  You can also contact the staff prior to the SOAR program.  Pamela Schwartz, Ph.D., Campus Disability Coordinator can be reached at 517/629-0825 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .  See also albion.edu/asc/disability-services

What does SOAR cost?

There's no charge for incoming first-year students participatin in SOAR, including lunch and all program materials.   There is a $10 participation fee for each parent and family member who would like to attend.   Children under age 12 many attend at half-price, $5.  The participation fee covers all program materials and lunch.  

What if I need overnight lodging?

A small number of rooms are available at our on-campus conference facility, Bellemont Manor.  For cost and availability, please call 517/629-0365. For off-campus lodging options, please visit our list of local hotels, motels, and bed and breakfasts.

What should I bring? What should I wear?

Just bring your excitement and enthusiasm.  You may also want to bring any questions you have. We’ll provide the rest. Attire for both students and parents/family members is casual for all SOAR programs, and we recommend you wear comfortable walking shoes.

How do I register?

You can register for SOAR through our Online Registration Form.   Once we receive your registration form, we will send you a confirmation indicating which SOAR session you have been assigned to the student's and primary parent's email address.   A hard copy confirmation will also be sent to the student's address via U.S. mail.   Reservations are made on a frist-come, first-served basis. 

Please note that in order to register for SOAR you must have paid your $350 general deposit to our Admission Office.   The SOAR program cannot place you into a session until that deposit is received by Albion College.