Second Eagle Connect program takes off

The second Eagle Connect class has landed.

Fourteen freshmen were in orientation Wednesday at the Phail Wynn, Jr. Student Services Center. The Eagle Connect program bridges Durham Tech and North Carolina Central University by allowing students to live on-campus at NCCU while earning an Associate degree at Durham Tech.

A group of Eagle Connect students take a "selfie" photo inside the Wynn Center.

A group of Eagle Connect students take a “selfie” photo inside the Wynn Center.

Several students said the program was a great way to immerse themselves in a college setting while bolstering their academic standings.

Deja Peel, a new student in the program, said she received an email about Eagle Connect in March and thought the opportunity sounded like a great fit.

“I’ve never heard of anything like that. We were stressed out about school, too,” Peel said. “I was like, ‘Oh, this is perfect.’ ”

Eagle Connect students began orientation with a fun Roll Call exercise, an ice breaker activity, and a campus-wide scavenger hunt.

Eagle Connect students began orientation with a fun Roll Call exercise, an ice breaker activity, and a campus-wide scavenger hunt.

Her roommate, Janay Furlow, said she was a first-generation college student and wanted to go to a community college.

But Furlow said she didn’t want to go to a college near her hometown in eastern North Carolina, so she asked a relative for help. The family member, an educator in Sampson County, told Furlow of Durham Tech and the Eagle Connect program.

“I didn’t want to give up. I didn’t want to stay home because I thought I would be the same and probably wouldn’t change much,” Furlow said. “I was like, ‘That sounds pretty good. I’ve always wanted to go to Central.’ ”

As a part of the orientation Wednesday, the new students flocked in groups across campus, taking “selfie” photos with Durham Tech buildings, signage, and even staff and faculty members.

Brenda East, an instructor of Psychology, leads an engaging Roll Call exercise with Eagle Connect students.

Brenda East, an instructor of Psychology, leads an engaging Roll Call exercise with Eagle Connect students.