12/16/2019- 105 Cadets from 38 counties graduated from the Wisconsin National Guard Challenge Academy over the weekend. The Challenge Academy is designed to re-shape the lives of at-risk 16-to-18-year-olds by offering a structured, military-style environment and state-certified teachers and counselors to build cadets’ academic abilities, character, self-confidence, and personal discipline. After graduating from the 22-week residential phase of academy training, cadets are paired with hometown mentors who offer guidance and encouragement in pursuing their new direction in life. Among the most recent grads are two cadets from Marinette County. The National Guard Youth Challenge Program currently operates 41 different programs and nationwide, more than 145,000 teens have graduated.