SOAR (Support Options for Achievement and Retention) is a TRIO Student Support Services Program funded by the U.S. Department of Education. The purpose of the SOAR Program is to provide academic, personal, career, and financial assistance to students who qualify based on one or more of the following criteria: low-income status, first-generation college student (neither parent has completed a bachelor’s degree), or a documented disability. The SOAR Program focuses on students’ assets and how to apply them in navigating college life. It provides the support needed to overcome obstacles and connect with resources to reach their goals.
Section 427 of GEPA requires equitable access to and participation in the SSS Project for persons with special needs, especially those who face six types of barriers that can impede equitable access or participation: gender, race, national origin, color, disability, or age. The SSS Project at Mayland Community College will adhere to this in the following ways: 1) SSS participants will be selected regardless of gender, race, national origin, color, disability, or age in keeping with the guidelines of the U.S. Department of Education. 2) SSS will be open to persons of all backgrounds, including low-income families. 3) The SSS office will be centrally located on campus and will be accessible to all persons with special needs. 4) All SSS staff members will receive orientation and training in working with students with special needs, and in-service training will be held on a regular basis each project year in order to keep staff informed of SSS Project policies and procedures. 5) SSS staff members will reflect the diverse ethnic population of the Project.