What is the SOAR Program?

"Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves."
John Muir

The SOAR Program is Misericordia University's Student Outdoor Adventure & Recreation Program, housed in the Student Engagement office. SOAR uses the outdoors as a medium to foster growth and development of leadership skills both at individual and group levels. It provides students with opportunities to safely participate in value-based outdoor activities. SOAR works to instill an appreciation for nature and a willingness to gain experiences in unfamiliar territories.

SOAR offers a wide variety of activities that range from a quiet walk in the woods to an exciting day of rock climbing. The challenges faced in a supportive setting can serve as an escape from the stresses of student life or help to overcome fears and limitations. Its challenging activities can serve as metaphors for the difficulties faced by every college student. SOAR provides another opportunity for the College Community to gain a unique, educational experience in a wilderness setting. In these instances, students develop skills that can apply to any situation they may encounter in the future.

For More Information, or to sign up for any of the numerous events, please contact Allison Kinsey, Coordinator of Student Engagement at (570) 674 -6411 or or simply stop by the Student Engagement office!

Spring 2019 Events

SOAR Ski Program 2019

Ski 2019 Flyer

Additional SOAR Programs Spring 2019

CLIMBING @ Wilkes-Barre Rocks Climbing Gym
Thursday, Feb. 14th - 5:15PM
Join us on a trip to a local indoor climbing venue to explore their routes! An excellent trip for people of all climbing levels, from those with no experience to experts!

ICE SKATING @ Toyota SportsPlex
Friday, Feb. 15th - 6:45PM
Travel with us to the Toyota SportsPlex in Wilkes-Barre to take part in community skate. End your week with some fun on the ice!

DAY HIKE @ Location TBA
Sunday, Feb. 17 - 9:00AM
Spend a day exploring the local back country! Location will be determined closer to the event, depending on weather and trail conditions.

CLIMBING @ Wilkes-Barre Rocks Climbing Gym

Thursday, Mar. 14th - 5:15PM
Join us on a trip to a local indoor climbing venue to explore their routes! An excellent trip for people of all climbing levels, from those with no experience to experts.

CANOE BATTLESHIP @ Anderson Center

Friday, Mar. 22nd - 8:00PM
You won't want to miss this night of controlled chaos and fun! Can you and your team sink the boats of the other teams before they sink yours?

OPEN CLIMBING @ Challenge Tower, Outdoor Classroom

Friday, Mar. 29th - 1:00PM - 4:00PM
Enjoy a Spring afternoon climbing the routes on our challenge course tower located right on campus behind Manglesdorf field!

Backpacking Overnight @ Location TBD

Saturday, Apr. 13th - Sunday, Apr. 14th
Adventure awaits! Join us on an overnight backpacking trip through one of Pennsylvania's beautiful state forests. This in excellent trip for backpacking novices and experts alike!

SOAR Leadership Program 2019

Are you interested in becoming a SOAR Leader? Our SOAR leaders are trained in various hard and soft skills in order to be competent leaders and outdoors people. Potential SOAR leaders must participate in the SOAR Leadership Development program which takes place every Spring semester. The schedule for 2019 is as follows:

Tuesday, February 19th, 6:00PM-8:00PM: Outdoor Leadership History and Overview, Leadership and Learning Styles

Tuesday, February 26th, 6:00PM-8:00PM: Risk Management, Decision-making and Judgment

Tuesday March 12th, 6:00PM-8:00PM: Group Dynamics, Communication and Facilitation

Tuesday, March 19th, 6:00PM-8:00PM: Trip Planning, Leave No Trace Ethics, Emergency Preparedness

Saturday, March 23rd, 9:00AM-5:00PM: Wilderness First Aid

Sunday, March 24th, 9:00AM-5:00PM: Wilderness First Aid

Friday, April 6th - Sunday, April 7th: Skills Weekend

If you are a current Misericordia student and are interested in participating in the Spring 2019 SOAR Leadership Development program please attend an informational meeting on Wednesday, January 30th, at 5:00PM in Insalaco 218 or reach out to Allison Kinsey at


Does your team, club, or organization want to be more effective? Team building is a challenging group experience that helps build supportive and effective teams. Success of the group is dependent on participation of all members involved. Team building programs focus on development healthy group interactions in a lively and energetic setting. They are designed to meet specific group needs, which would be assessed beforehand with the help of a contact person. Team building can help groups become stronger and better prepared for the obstacles they face.

Stewardship and Service

SOAR activities raise an awareness of the natural environment in which we live. Whether it is planning an Earth Day celebration or a service project, SOAR activities focus on the concept of leaving a place better than when you came. By challenging people to lead more thoughtful lives, SOAR activities reflect the mission of Misericordia University. SOAR activities focus on improving both physical and emotional health in an enriching and rewarding setting.

For more information, please contact Student Engagement.


To encourage outdoor recreation, SOAR provides students the ability to rent quality outdoor gear at reasonable prices. All equipment is maintained in excellent condition and inspected regularly. Rentals available for one through nine days.

Equipment is provided to participants free of charge when participating in SOAR activities.

SOAR Rents the following equipment:

  • tent: MSR 3-person w/ footprint
  • tent: Black Diamond 2-person mirage w/ footprint
  • sleeping bag: Wiggy's 20-degree
  • sleeping bag: EMS 0-degree Boreal
  • sleeping bag: Cascade sleeping pad
  • water: PFD
  • water: Throwbag
  • hiking: Trekking poles
  • hiking: MSR Water Filter
  • cooking: MSR Stove w/ full fuel bottle
  • cooking: Pots/Pans
  • cooking: Individual cook kit
  • mountain/Climbing: helmets
  • climbing: Black Diamond Harness - big wall
  • climbing: Black Diamond Harness
  • climbing: Mad Rock Phoenix Climbing shoes
  • climbing: chalkbag
  • climbing: belay device w/ caribiner
  • climbing: figure 8
  • winter: snowshoes
  • Backpack: Kelty 4900-6400 CU
  • Maps: Misc PA state park/forests (contact SOAR for more information)

At this time, SOAR does not rent canoes, kayaks, or climbing ropes. This equipment is available on all SOAR-sponsored activities.

For pricing and rental agreements, please contact Student Engagement or email Allison Kinsey at

Essentials Workshop

SOAR offers several Essentials Workshops throughout the academic year that are open to the Misericordia community wishing to develop or hone their outdoor skills. These are designed to allow students to learn in a safe and supporting environment. Some past workshops have included Orienteering, Leave No Trace, Belaying, and Snowshoeing.

Additionally, SOAR sometimes offers specialty training opportunities, such as certification in Wilderness First Aid, open to the Misericordia community.

Challenge Course Waiver

Interested in the Challenge Course? Don't forget to sign the permission waiver!

Challenge Course Waiver

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