Spartan Outdoor Orientation Program
The Spartan Outdoor Orientation Program (SOOP) is sponsored by UNCG Outdoor Adventures, the outdoor education and recreation program within the Department of Campus Recreation. SOOP is a unique program designed for first-year students at UNCG. We utilize adventure and outdoor recreation experiences to assist new students in bridging the gap from high school to college while building a strong community with fellow first-year students. Previous experience is NOT required for any of the programs, so this is a perfect opportunity to try something new! Please read through the following information to learn more about the different programs, costs, and how to register. We hope you will consider this wonderful opportunity to explore the outdoors and establish a community with fellow first-year students!
Mountain Voyage: Backpacking & Whitewater Rafting
July 12-17, 2015
The Mountain Voyage will take place in the beautiful southern Appalachian Mountains of North Carolina. With everything we need in our backpacks, we will spend several days backpacking trails within Pisgah National Forest. Highlights of this trip will include sweeping mountain views, swimming holes, waterfalls, and plenty of great memories with your fellow group members! Our trip will conclude with an exciting and scenic whitewater rafting trip on the Nolichucky River where we will spend the afternoon cruising through rapids and enjoying our last night in a rustic riverside cabin. Click HERE for full itinerary and details.
Coastal Adventure: Kayaking & Sailing
July 26-31, 2015
The Coastal Adventure will take place along the scenic coast of North Carolina. We will spend our days kayaking a variety of coastal waterways and exploring the many beautiful and uninhabited barrier islands. Each day we will return to our mainland group campsite within the Croatan National Forest where we will enjoy delicious camp meals, nightly campfires, and group activities. Our final day we will travel to Beaufort, NC to board a chartered sail boat. The sailing trip will take us to the islands of the Cape Lookout National Seashore where we will have plenty of time to explore the island and the famous lighthouse! Click HERE for full itinerary and details.
August 9-11, 2015
Simply put, the Spartan Basecamp is summer camp for UNCG students! The Spartan Basecamp takes place at UNCG’s Piney Lake, a 48-acre wooded property that boasts an abundance of recreation activities and camp amenities. Spartan Basecamp highlights will include team building activities on the high and low ropes course, getting involved in the Greensboro community through a group service project, and participating in an action packed adventure race! Each evening will be spent relaxing with the group by the campfire and tent camping under the stars. Spartan Basecamp is the perfect opportunity to build community, friendships, and lasting memories with fellow first-year students! Optional early move-in will be available for students living on-campus (August 8th). Click HERE for full itinerary and details.
What are the benefits of attending SOOP as a first-year student?
- A sense of community at UNCG and Greensboro
Through your experience with a fellow group of new students, it is our hope that you will begin to develop a sense of belonging to the UNCG community. In addition, you will be able to learn more about life as a student from your student trip leaders who will be able to offer boundless information and tips to help you succeed.
- Establish friendships and support networks
We know college is a big transition and having support and friends can help with settling into a new environment. SOOP will provide a great opportunity to spend an extended amount of time with fellow incoming first-year students.
- Outdoor skills
All of our programs will teach outdoor skills at varying levels. Whether you are camping out in a tent during the Spartan Basecamp; learning to kayak to a barrier island on the Costal Adventure; or learning to pack your backpack for a multi-day trek during the Mountain Voyage; our experienced trip leaders will teach you all the necessary skills to live and explore in the outdoors safely and comfortably!
- Environmental awareness
All of our programs aim to increase the awareness and appreciation for our natural world. We will teach and expect all participants to practice Leave No Trace environmental ethics throughout each program. We will provide educational lessons along the way that focus on how to enjoy the outdoors in a way that promotes environmental stewardship.
Here is what a past SOOP participant had to say about their experience:
“SOOP was a wonderful introduction to the UNCG community. Being able to meet new people, go on adventures and step outside of your comfort zone to experience exciting new things is what SOOP is all about. The friends, memories and stories created on the trip are ones that I will never forget. With the help of the Outdoor Adventures staff and the activities on the trip, my transition into college life was quite smooth. I obtained new skills, and learned things about myself that I did not know before the trip. Community, friendship, leadership, and team bonding are great qualities of the SOOP trip. Thanks to SOOP and the OA staff, I have really enjoyed my first year at UNCG.” –Brooke, 2013 participant