Earning while learning

Students who enroll in the North Carolina Triangle Apprentice Program earn a degree while in high school


Staff Photo by Chinma Ngumoha

Rising Juniors who have the opportunity to apply to the NCTAP program.

North Carolina Triangle Apprentice Program, was created in 2010 by Robbie Earnhardt, who wanted to give high school students the opportunity to learn about insurance companies and the importance of them while gaining business abilities. With the help from many companies and schools, students have the opportunity to make a future and a name for themselves.

“NCTAP is an amazing apprentice program with over 10 companies involved,” Sarah Joyner, career counselor at Wakefield and lead advisor on the NCTAP Program said.

“It is a very competitive program but if the students are selected they get to work for the company and get a free two year mechanical engineering degree from Wake Tech.””

— Joyner

Hearing about the program wasn’t hard because of all the buzz about it.

“I saw it on the school website and told all my friends about it,” Jayla Poindexter, sophomore said. “We started talking about it and thought it was really cool.”

One of the may benefits of this program are the learning opportunities it provides the students.

“This program gives a lot of good opportunities,” James Muthiani, senior at Wakefield High School said. “I can learn something new, try something new and have new elements[new things] that can help me in the future.”

Another important benefit to the program is the life long connections the students make on the way.

“To be completely honest I love North Carolina so much and would never think of moving anywhere else,” Cindy Chen, junior at Wakefield said. “I think this program will give me the opportunity to have ties to the community and meet more fellow North Carolinians.”

NCTAP gives students the inside view of business and how to work in the business world with the right tools.

“They give students a hands on experience about the company and all the information about it,” Joyner said.

While this program has different learning opportunities and networking, one of the main things that make this program unique is the money involved.“

“I have to admit when I first saw how much the program will be giving to students if they won I was just in it for the money,” Chen said. “But after doing some research, I saw how amazing and great this opportunity would be for me if I won.”

Even though this program is for juniors and seniors, sophomores are excited to apply next year.

“I know I am just a sophomore but I was very interested in the program and what it could do for my future,” Poindexter said. “But I am very excited to apply next year and can not wait to see what this program can do for me and what I can do for the program.”

With all the qualities that make the program a good environment for students it also has things that challenge student.

“When I first heard of how many hours [130] we need to put in I was a little sad,” Muthiani said. “I thought I would just do it and get money but this program is way more than just getting money. Even though students put in a lot of time and effort it’s absolutely worth it.”

There are many reasons why students should apply to this program.

“I am trying to get the word out to the students about the program because it really is such a an amazing opportunity to give to a high school students,” Joyner said. “If you apply and get in not only do you get two free years but a job after college.”