Aspiring Eagles Academy

Bridging to SOAR

Aspiring Eagles Academy Summer Bridge Program (AEA) provides a comprehensive orientation and academic support program designed to ease the transition from high school to college while building a solid educational foundation. The Academy focuses on a specialized population of underrepresented students such as first-generation and rural students.

Applicants selected to participate in AEA consist of a cohort model, half of whom are first-generation college students. The academy includes a hybrid 5-week Summer Bridge program, a living-learning community, cultural enrichment, study, travel abroad, intrusive academic coaching and focused academic support. The AEA Summer Bridge Program is open to in-state or out-of-state students who are either U.S. citizens or permanent residents of the United States.


AEA 4-Year Graduation Rate


AEA Student Retention Rate


Average GPA of Cohort 21 (First-Year Cumulative GPA)

Aspiring Eagles Academy Program

The Aspiring Eagles Academy (AEA) at NCCU aims to provide foundational academic support and guidance to AEA scholars as they transition from high school to NCCU. We work closely with our scholars and offer ongoing support throughout their entire academic careers. One of the program's specific goals is to provide scholars with the opportunity to enhance their academic performance and skill set as they transition into and progress through their majors.

View AEA Program Benefits

Aspiring Eagles Academy Spotlight

Zyon Rodgers

Current AEA Students

Zyon Rodgers (Cohort 20) served as an intern chief finance officer for the Durham Success Summit last summer. During his internship, he oversaw all the budgets and also created a financial literacy curriculum for the scholar programs. He is currently serving as the University Honors Program director of campus partnerships and the NAACP treasurer. Zyon also helps out with the Career and Professional Development Center as a career eagle officer. Outside of school, he is an ambassador for the Thurgood Marshall College Fund, Cricket Wireless, Redbull, Amazon and also Samsung. He enjoys spending time with family, meeting new people, and most importantly giving back to his community. 

Drake Dais

AEA Alumni

Drake Dais entered North Carolina Central University during the summer of 2016 as a member of the Aspiring Eagles Academy and is a recent 2020 graduate. She received her B.B.A. focusing in Human Resource Management. Drake currently serves as the chief of staff to the Firmwide Campus Diversity Lead and Global Head of Corporate, Consumer and General Management Campus Recruiting. In this role, Drake helps to oversee 11 campus programs and all the campus diversity partners while building a competitive recruiting strategy to keep JPMC at the forefront of the financial industry.

Student athlete holding up American football helmet

AEA Student-Athletes

Thirty percent of each cohort of Aspiring Eagles Academy consists of student-athletes at North Carolina Central University. Participating in AEA allows students to interact with each other and build friendships during the program while also allowing for lessons on classroom etiquette. Topics throughout the summer include but are not limited to note-taking, test preparation, study habits, NCAA guidelines, academic misconduct, student-athlete time management, mental health and other topics that will help a new student-athlete thrive at North Carolina Central University.

Two Students Outside with Computer

Aspiring Eagles Academy FAQs

Have questions? Learn more about AEA.

Members of AEA and Chick-Fil-A posing for a picture

AEA Photo Gallery

Take a look at these images of some of our outstanding students.

More to Explore

Donate to AEA

Select "Aspiring Eagles Academy" from the dropdown menu to support professional development and academic enrichment activities such as guest speakers and national and international travel.

AEA Application Portal

The application period begins in November 2022, and the deadline is May 2023.


White, Jesse

Administrative Support Associate

University College

location icon Alexander-Dunn Building, Room 101

email icon jwhite138@NCCU.EDU

phone icon 919-530-6932


York, Marquise A

Coordinator of Student Transition and Engagement

University College

location icon Alexander-Dunn Building Room 108

email icon myork@NCCU.EDU

phone icon 919-530-7150

Eagle flying on a red background

Young, Mckayla E

Director of Student Transition and Engagement

University College

location icon Alexander-Dunn Building, Room 106

email iconmyoung43@NCCU.EDU

phone icon 919-530-6973