SOAR Student Support Services — Health Sciences

SF State Student Outreach and Academic Retention (SOAR) is a TRIO Student Support Services (SSS) Program focusing on Health Sciences (HS). A federally funded program, SOAR TRIO SSS-HS (or simply SOAR TRIO) offers free comprehensive services designed to promote academic success. Our goal is to provide low-income, first-generation college students and individuals with disabilities with demonstrated academic need, the resources and services to earn a baccalaureate degree in health-science-related fields.

SOAR TRIO was initiated as a pilot program in Spring 2013 by Dean Alvin Alvarez and the previous Student Resource Center (SRC) director, Jessica Kongthong, to support the College of Health & Social Sciences’ most-at-risk students with comprehensive advising and peer support. In subsequent years, then SOAR program coordinators Marlboro Aleonar and Amie Tat Brady expanded the program to support more students and increase services. In February 2015, the opportunity to grow the program presented itself, and we applied for a SSS TRIO grant. On July 14, 2015 we found out our grant proposal was accepted, and SOAR TRIO was born.

While SOAR TRIO is a new TRIO program, the College's Student Resource Center and its staff have been around for a while and love working holistically with students. The current SOAR TRIO director, Juan Carlos Gonzalez, brings more than 18 years of experience into his role. The program Tutoring Office is located in HSS 222 and the Advising Office in HSS 338.


TRIO programs are the result of two acts of legislation that are an important part of American history: the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964, known as the War on Poverty statute, and the Higher Education Act of 1965, which asserted a national commitment to providing educational opportunity for all Americans regardless of race, ethnicity or economic circumstance. In support of this commitment, Congress established a series of programs to help low-income Americans enter college, graduate and move on to participate more fully in America’s economic and social life. SOAR SSS-HS is funded through the U.S. Department of Education.

TRIO logo


Benefits of the Program

  • 3-unit Critical Thinking college course (HSS 110 / exploring a spring 2022 option since block enrollent for fall 2021 removed our ability to offer this in fall)
  • Individualized academic advising
  • Free printing
  • Faculty support
  • Peer mentor support / Peer mentorship opportunities
  • Student success workshops (i.e., FAFSA, Scholarships, Financial Literacy, Graduate School, Etc.)
  • Dedicated quiet study area and tutoring space
  • Access to the Student Resource Center (SRC)
  • Admission and application support for impacted health science related majors
  • Access to individualized tutoring
  • Cultural event reimbursements and community building opportunities
  • Graduation assistance
  • Career planning
  • GWAR Fellowship (as available via CARP)
  • Opportunities to build & sharpen interview / resume skills
  • Graduate school application assistance

Active Participant Advising and Learning Support (Tutoring) Services

Undergraduate students can now make a learning support appointment with the University's Tutoring and Academic Support Center (TASC) by logging in to Navigator. You will be prompted to sign in with your SF State ID number and password. If you need help, refer to our guide for scheduling an appointment. You can find more information about learning support services and links to SF State’s learning support programs on the Tutoring and Academic Support Center’s website.

SOAR Staff

JC Gonzalez
Juan Carlos Gonzalez, M.P.A.
SOAR Program Director
(415) 405-3740

Contact Us

SOAR Front Office
Phone: (415) 405-3740
Office: HSS 254