SOAR is an orientation program for students new to UW-Madison. First-year students participate in a two-day orientation program and transfer students participate in a one-day orientation program.
The goal of SOAR is to introduce students to academic life at UW-Madison, discuss academic goals and interests with an advisor, and select classes for the Fall semester. To find out more about SOAR (including schedules and accommodations), visit the official SOAR website, maintained by the Center for the First-Year Experience (CFYE).
When students arrive on the first day of SOAR, they will be grouped for advising based on their academic interests. There will be a presentation about the various schools and colleges and an opportunity to choose where they want to be advised for the duration of their SOAR experience.
College Letters & Science Honors students are guaranteed the opportunity to see an L&S Honors advisor at SOAR. If a student is undecided about their major or considering any majors in the College of Letters & Science, then that student should plan to be advised by the Letters & Science Honors Program at SOAR.
Students will spend the rest of the afternoon on the first day learning about their intended degrees, interpreting their AP/IB scores and placement test scores, and beginning to design course schedules for the fall term based on their current interests and goals. On the morning of the second day, L&S Honors advisors will continue to work with students as they select classes for the Fall term. By the end of the morning on the second day, students will have a Fall schedule in-hand, as well as information about changes they may want to make over the summer months (such as when AP scores arrive), and important advising information for the fall.
Why advise with the L&S Honors Program at SOAR?
Even if a student is unsure about their major or are considering fields like law or medicine, they should be advised by L&S Honors advisors at SOAR! This is the only way to ensure that the student receives information specific to the Honors experience at the UW-Madison, such as Honors degree requirements and how to distinguish between different Honors course designations. Honors advisors have plenty of information about, and experience with, the specialized areas of law, medicine, and the dozens of majors offered through the College of Letters & Science. In essence, we will serve as a student’s "home base" during the SOAR experience--and the student’s time at UW-Madison.
If a student has a strong inclination towards a major in another school or college, such as the School of Business, School of Education, or School of Nursing, the student is welcome to be advised by that school or college at SOAR. Whatever advising room a student selects, they should tell an academic advisor that they are a member of the L&S Honors Program and consult with the Honors advisors at some point during the second SOAR day to receive important information about the Honors Program.
Prepare for SOAR
To prepare for SOAR, and for the UW Honors experience, please take some time to review the following information.