Mountaineer ChalleNGe Academy honored for student-centered support

October 22, 2018 GMT

CHARLESTON— The West Virginia National Guard Mountaineer ChalleNGe Academy (MCA) received the exemplary partnership award for student-centered support from The Education Alliance today during the 2018 West Virginia Education Summit held in Charleston.

The chairman and treasurer of the Alliance Board of Directors, Brett Staples and Christina Brumley, presented the award to Maj. Gen. James Hoyer, Adjutant General of the West Virginia National Guard, and Bob Morris and Dianna Trickett, Director and Deputy Director of MCA.

“This award is a testament to the impact MCA has had on the more than 4,100 young people and their families in West Virginia who have graduated over the last 23 years. Our program is seen as an example across the Nation of what can be accomplished when community and government

leaders develop lasting partnerships focused on reaching at-risk youth,” said Hoyer.

“When we talk about student-centered learning, ChalleNGe is an outside-the-box approach that meets students where they are and provides them the stability to accomplish their goals and be successful individuals, ” Hoyer continued. “This program is vitally important to our state and I thank all those who continue to provide outstanding support to MCA.”

The Mountaineer ChalleNGe Academy is a free, voluntary program designed to train and mentor selected at-risk youth ages 16 to 18 years old to become contributing members of society using the program’s eight core components in a quasi-military environment. The residential phase is 22-weeks and is designed to give academically challenged teens a chance to obtain their basic education or earn their high school diploma. A one year post-residential follow-up program is included in the curriculum for long-term student success.

“The Mountaineer ChalleNGe Academy is proud to receive this award,” said Bob Morris. “We believe it recognizes the strong partnerships developed by state agencies, the business community, the West Virginia National Guard and the staff of the MCA. The partnership extends to the families of our cadets who entrust us with educating and guiding their children. These partnerships have allowed us to enhance our whole person program and prepare these youth for the future.”

The MCA began in 1993 as one of the Department of Defense’s first 10 locations in the Nation. Since its inception, MCA has held more than 50 classes graduating 4,187 students and awarding 1,163 high school diplomas. The program holds two classes each year and boasts an 85 percent completion rate among attendees.

The West Virginia Education Summit, hosted by The Education Alliance, serves as a venue for discussion with business, legislative, education, and community leaders. Participants have the opportunity to hear from both state and national education experts and to engage in innovative dialogue on how to work together to achieve excellence in education in West Virginia.