This site is best viewed in Firefox, Chrome, Safari, or EdgeX

A photo of a group of graduates from the SOAR program, taken outside at NECC

Welcome to SOAR!

SOAR Project Logo

The SOAR (Seize Opportunities, Aspire to Rise) program is a student support program created to help you succeed! 

We provide opportunities for you to strengthen your academic skills, explore career and transfer options, express your identities, and gain leadership experience.

Our goal is to create a familial community that fosters trust and provides personalized and caring support that empowers you to overcome obstacles and achieve your version of success. Whether you need help or someone to talk to, we are here for you. Please don’t hesitate to reach out whenever you need us.

For more information about becoming a SOAR Scholar email or stop by the SOAR center in room 209 in the SC building, Haverhill Campus.

Back this Fall 2023: SOAR After Dark!

Feeling stuck with an assignment?

Our Academic Fellows are available Monday through Thursday from 5:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. virtually and in-person. Our Fellows can assist you with assignment planning and completion! Just have a quick question? Our Academic Fellows are here to help. 

All locations are open Monday – Thursday from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. (EST)

Want to join virtually?

Click HERE

Want to join in person?

Bentley Library in Haverhill until 8:00 p.m., when the library closes, they will move to the Student Center Cafe area on the 2nd floor from 8:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. (EST)

Dimitry Room L146

STEM Tutoring

 We have a STEM tutor available Monday through Friday.


Monday: By appointment only

Tuesday: Available in Haverhill and online from 4:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. (EST)

Wednesday: Available in Haverhill and online from 5:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. (EST)

Thursday: Available in Haverhill from 1:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. (EST)

Friday: By appointment only

Who We Are

SOAR Staff
Promotional Photo

Rachel Harnish (She/Her/Hers)

Hello! I am an Academic and Transfer Advisor for SOAR, and I’m so excited to be working with you! I have a B.S. in Elementary Education and ESL, and a Masters in Adult and Higher Education. I have taught at all levels, from preschool through college, and have worked in Advising and Student Support for the last eight years. I truly love what I do, and my goal is to help make your educational journey the best it can be!

When I’m not working, I like to unwind by making jewelry, playing the piano, or watching 90s sitcom reruns or cheesy reality shows. I’m also very active in animal rescue and have two rescue pets of my own. I live for the spring and summer, and love walking the beach and going to fairs and festivals when the weather is nice. I’m looking forward to getting to know you – stop by and say hi!

headshot of Jacques Morrow

Jacques Morrow (He/Him/His)

Hi! My name is Jacques Morrow and I am an Academic and Transfer Advisor for SOAR.

I hail from the Rocky Mountains of Colorado and Idaho, and have been teaching, tutoring or advising in some form for the last 15 years. I have a B.A. in Theatre and a Masters in Theatre Education, and my graduate thesis delved into how attitudes between students and teachers affect information retention. I believe teaching is ultimately a position of service, so I am here to help, even if that just means a cup of coffee and a sympathetic ear.

My passion is yoga, which I began twelve years ago in conjunction with work as a mime, clown and acrobat. I am the quintessential geek, consuming everything from Marvel to Harry Potter, to The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy (Earth: Mostly Harmless). I am also the father of three precocious children and the husband of one long-suffering wife.

headshot of Faniel Adames

Faniel Adames (He/Him/His)

Hello, my name is Faniel Adames and I am the Student Support Coordinator for the Liberal Arts and STEM. I graduated from the University of Massachusetts of Amherst with a theater degree and a minor in psychology. I’m a first-generation college student, so I understand how confusing it can be in a new environment, not knowing what to ask or expect. That’s why I’m here!

Don’t be shy to reach out with any concerns, questions, or even if you just want to chat about movies and shows. I’m a resource that NECC wants you to have, and part of my job is to connect you to the other resources you’ll need. If I know, then you’ll know. If don’t know, then I’ll find out. So, don’t hesitate to stop by!

headshot of Kelley Biedermann

Kelley Biedermann (She/Her/Hers)

My name is Kelley Biedermann and I am an Academic Coach with the SOAR program. If you need support or are feeling overwhelmed with your classes, I’m here to listen and help you get back on track. I want to help you reach your success goals.

Prior to joining NECC I was a first-grade classroom teacher. My prior work experience also includes working at a non-profit organization, helping young children living at homeless family shelters. I also have extensive experience in consulting & training.

A fun fact about me is that I love to decorate for the holidays, my office will always have various decorations. I am the owner of what many might describe as ‘tacky yard blow-ups’ – which will be proudly on display in our front yard during Halloween and Christmas! Please stop by my office in Haverhill in the Student Center/SC209 to say Hi.

headshot of Lisa Walters

Lisa Walters (She/Her/Hers)

Hello. My name is Lisa Walters, and I am an Academic coach at SOAR. I love the title “Seize Opportunities, Aspire to Rise”, as I am excited to help make this happen for our students! In my previous role at Northern Essex I worked as the English as a Second Language Placement Specialist, evaluating students’ level in English and then placing them in the appropriate classes. I have a Ph.D. in French Studies as well as a background in ESL and Spanish. I have taught at numerous colleges including UMass Lowell, Salem State, Merrimack College, Tufts University, and Brandeis. I like yoga, travel, crochet, music and dance (merengue, salsa, bachata and more!)

headshot of Kellie Schroeder

Kellie Schroeder (She/Her/Hers)

I am thrilled that I have the opportunity to collaborate with NECC students and help them polish their writing skills. The 11 years I have spent at NECC as a professional writing tutor and a Writing Instructor have deepened my passion for empowering students on their academic journeys. Before joining NECC, I worked as a communications consultant, public relations manager, and professional writer and had the privilege of interviewing well-known figures ranging from the former Secretary of State Colin Powell to the singer/songwriter Gloria Estefan to the best-selling author Mary Higgins Clark. During my time as an ELL instructor in Madrid, Spain, I became fluent in Spanish and as the older sister of a Deaf sibling, I am proficient in American Sign Language. Please pop into the Writing Center to discuss your next writing project –whether it’s a scholarship essay, a short response or a research paper, I am eager to help with every phase of the writing process! 

headshot of Sarah Cooper

Sarah Cooper (She/Her/Hers)

I’m excited to be your Director of SOAR. Our passion is helping students define and achieve their version of success. My partner nicknamed me “the professor” because I am a teacher at heart: From helping a fellow shopper find gooseberries to guiding our children through life, I love to help people harness the power of knowledge to make informed choices. I have a master’s degree in the Art of Teaching from Johnson and Wales University in Providence, RI and a Master’s in Interior Design from the New England School of Art and Design at Suffolk, and they have certainly opened doors in my profession. I look forward to meeting you soon!

headshot of Martha Mazeika

Martha Mazeika (She/Her/Hers)

My name is Martha Mazeika and I am the Assistant Director of SOAR! I have been working at community colleges for 25 years in Massachusetts, Virginia, and Illinois with my main focus being advising and student success. Like all of you, I’m in school as well, to add to my collection of degrees. I am a quilter and love sewing (especially hand sewing!) with friends. Please stop by my office in the Dimitry Building L134 if you need help, want to share your story, and/or have ideas of how the SOAR program can help you!!!

headshot of Dermot Luddy

Dermot Luddy (He/Him/His)

Hi! I am the Assistant Director of SOAR for Academic Support, and I look forward to helping you plot a smooth course forward in your journey here.

I studied philosophy, computers, and theology in Ireland, then studied at Fordham University in the Bronx. I’ve taught at Fordham, Stonehill College, SNHU, Curry College, UML, Bridgewater State, Northern Essex, as well as fifteen years at a high school. I’ve worked in the Center for Liberal Arts here and continue to advocate for liberal arts as a critical part of any curriculum.

I live on the edge of a swamp with my wife and life partner, our brood of young adults, in addition to two dogs and three cats. I am never happier than when pontificating on the state of American politics. I enjoy movies, live music, and spending time with friends and family.

headshot of Eudania-Chucha Aquino

Eudania-Chucha Aquino (She/Her/Hers)

Hello, my name is Eudania Aquino but everyone calls me Chucha. I have been with NECC on and off since 2009, and I recently completed my Associates Degree in Human Services. I just became a part of the SOAR team after being one of the students in the program. I seized the opportunities and look forward to seeing you all SOAR! Hope to meet you all this semester!

headshot of Joe Powis

Joe Powis (He/Him/His)

Hi! My name is Joe Powis, and I currently work as a Social Media and Digital Content Creator here at SOAR. I’m a student heading into my second year here at NECC, where I’m studying environmental science and hope to play for the baseball team. As a work-study for the SOAR program, I design and create flyers, posters, infographics and more, as well as help manage the SOAR social media accounts.

Growing up on the Northshore of MA, I have always loved nature and exploring the outdoors, which influenced me to work at the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge on Plum Island, Newburyport. Some of my favorite things to do are traveling with my family, playing sports, spending time with friends and just about anything that leads to a good time.

headshot of Jazmine Scamman

Jazmine Scamman (She/Her/Hers)

Hello, my name is Jazmine and I am the Administrative Assistant for the SOAR program. Welcome! I have a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Management as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre from Salem State University. I love the arts – music, dance, theatre, etc. I love Disney, and I also love to travel. If you visit campus, please stop by to say hello.

SOAR Ambassador Mentors

SOAR Ambassador Mentors

Ambassador Mentors are here to assist students in becoming acclimated to Northern Essex campus and culture. They work collaboratively to engage students in activities that increase their peers’ success and involvement in a positive college experience. Their mission: to make connections with an accepting, supportive SOAR staff and peer community! 

Our Services



SOAR plans a variety of workshops to set our students up for success in a variety of areas, such as informative financial, personal health and wellness activities, as well as academic skills and tips workshops tailored to SOAR students. Specific topics we have planned include study tips, financial literacy, self-care, career planning, and more! Don’t forget the FUN!

Sign up for our events HERE



Print View