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High school students get a taste of college life

Published on July 24, 2023

High school students get a taste of college life

Eastern hosts first Pre-College Summer

High school students enrolled in Eastern's inaugural Pre-College Summer pose for a group photo.

Professor Brian Day shows a student how to operate a video camera.

Students socialize in the University's main quad.

Students get a behind-the-scenes look at the Fine Arts Instructional Center.

A group of high school students from Connecticut and beyond previewed college life in a one-week Pre-College Summer program at Eastern Connecticut State University this July.

The students chose Intro to Filmmaking or Poetry and Fiction Writing, both non-credit courses, and attended workshops on career services and college admissions. They stayed for the week in a residence hall and socialized at game nights, music sessions, craft activities and more. It was the first time Eastern has offered a Pre-College Summer.

“The inaugural program was a resounding success,” said Chris Drewry, director of co-curricular academic programming, who directed the program. “The participants had an incredible time getting a taste of college life on our beautiful campus. Each day, they emerged more from their shells and by the end had made lifelong friends."

poetry class
English Professor Dan Donaghy taught a course on poetry and creative writing.

Drewry continued: “They were passionate about their academic projects, which they had the opportunity to share with fellow participants and family members in a culminating ceremony (at the end of the week), which was marked by many smiles and tears as they all said goodbye to the program and to each other.”

Most of the students came from Connecticut, but participants also came from Massachusetts, New York, Missouri and Costa Rica.

“The students were terrific,” said Professor Dan Donaghy, who taught the creative writing classes. “They formed real friendships with each other and were willing to take chances and share stories from their lives with our group. Some of the (writing) prompts they worked on included a poem about where they’re from, a poem about an object associated with someone close to them, a list poem about what makes them happy and flash fiction pieces with a number of story starters,” he said.

Film class
Film Professor Brian Day taught a course on filmmaking. 

Brian Day, associate professor of filmmaking, led students in creating short films using a song as the soundtrack and motivation for a story.

“I think the program went well and the students enjoyed themselves and got a taste of what it’s like to be a college student,” he said. “It was a great way to make connections with students who may see Eastern as part of their future.”

Written by Lucinda Weiss