About the SOAR Center
The Students Organizing for Access to Resources (SOAR) Center strives to create equitable access to food, professional clothes, commencement regalia, and scholarly resources for WU students. The SOAR Center is located in Shepard and currently houses the Bearcat Pantry, Clothing Share, and First-Generation Book Drive and is maintained by committed students and staff and faculty advisers.
The Bearcat Pantry addresses food insecurity experienced by Willamette students. Food insecurity is very prevalent among college students across the country and can be a barrier to succeeding in school. The Bearcat Pantry has both perishable and non-perishable food items, as well as personal hygiene supplies, such as shampoo and razors. The Bearcat Pantry was originally started as a program under the Office of Community Service Learning but now has transitioned to operating more independently as an ASWU External Program.
The Clothing Share provides support for WU students seeking professional attire for jobs, internships, conferences, and other similar events and opportunities that advance their present and future endeavors. Commencement regalia also are available for interested students. The Clothing Share contains: blouses, shirts, skirts, slacks, suits, ties, jewelry, shoes, and handbags for all Willamette University students. These materials are located in the Green Room inside the Students Organizing for Access to Resources (SOAR) Center in Shepard Hall. The Clothing Share is organized by La Chispa de Salem (the Salem Spark), a multidisciplinary coalition committed to environmental justice.
First-Generation Book Drive
The First-Generation Book Drive aims to reduce the financial stress that many first-generation students face when purchasing their textbooks. As a program of the Office of Multicultural Affairs, we seek to address some of the challenges that many first-generation students face when navigating college. In addition to providing books for various courses, we also have school supplies that students may take to support them in their classes.