Student Outreach and Retention Center

Umoja Program

umoja SOAR logo

Our Mission

Umoja, (a Kiswahili word meaning unity) is a community and critical resource dedicated to enhancing the cultural and educational experiences of African American and other students. We believe that when the voices and histories of students are deliberately and intentionally recognized, the opportunity for self-efficacy emerges and a foundation is formed for academic success. Umoja actively serves and promotes student success for all students through a curriculum and pedagogy responsive to the legacy of the African and African American Diasporas.

The Umoja Community at UC Irvine is designed to assist students of African descent in the transition to a four-year university. We offer resources and support to help students set goals, and maximize their experience at UCI to achieve academic, professional, and personal success. The Transfer Student Center staff and counselors will provide individualized support to meet students where they are and support them in their goals and future aspirations.

*The Umoja program at UCI is pending until official designation from the Umoja Community Education Foundation. However, please reach out if you have any questions about resources available to you.

Umoja Pilot program

Submit your Interest Form:

Umoja Peer Educators

  • She, Her, Hers

    Hi! I'm a third-year African American Studies/Psychology double major.  When I'm not at the SOAR Center, I enjoy going to concerts, discovering new music, relaxing at the beach, and roller skating. I joined SOAR because I wanted to be a part of a team that helped Black transfer students feel more connected to the university. As an Umoja Peer Educator, I look forward to advocating for the African Diaspora and working within the community.

Mia Roddy

Umoja Peer Pathfinder Educator

  • He, Him, His

    Antonio Lee is a Junior Transfer student from the Bay Area in NorCal. He is a professional dancer, actor, and musician who is studying classical voice at UC Irvine. He is passionate about arts, culture, and community. Antonio has always been an activist at heart and is excited to advocate for students by connecting them to resources, events, and opportunities that will allow them to unlock their true potential. He is dedicated to building a community on campus because he knows how important community support is as a UCI student. 

Antonio Lee

Umoja Peer Pathfinder Educator

What does the Umoja program offer?

  • One-on-One Advising
  • Peer Mentorship
  • LARC Scholarship
  • SOAR Scholarship
  • Book Loan/ I-Clicker Loan Program
  • Testing Materials
  • Graduate School Preparation
  • Individualized Workshops and Events
  • Priority Consideration for Housing (Umoja House in Arroyo Vista)
  • Umoja Professional Development Opportunity
  • Umoja Student Club

What we do during consultations:

During consultations, we help identify and address student needs. We assist mentees to navigate and connect to campus resources and services. We work with our mentees to create an individual plan of action for student success

And much more!

Focus areas during consultations:

  • Academic Success
  • Mental and Emotional Health
  • Financial Wellness
  • Professional Development
  • Campus Engagement and Belonging

Program Partners