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updated: 12/20/2013 8:14 AM

Wisconsin program for at-risk youth to graduate 115

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Associated Press

STEVENS POINT, Wis. -- A Wisconsin National Guard program for at-risk youth is preparing to graduate 115 cadets this weekend in Stevens Point.

The Challenge Academy accepts teens who are at risk of not graduating from high school. The free 22-week program is open to boys and girls who have dropped out, been expelled or fallen at least a year behind in credits.

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The goal is to help them earn their high school equivalency diplomas, learn essential skills and become responsible citizens.

Two cadets who previously graduated are also receiving scholarships -- $5,000 for Arnelle Adams of Beloit, and $2,000 for Samuel Robertson of Chippewa Falls.

The Wisconsin Challenge Academy will begin its next class Jan. 16. Applications are available online.

The academy is located at Fort McCoy, between Sparta and Tomah.

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