HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - Dozens of former high school drop-outs from across Mississippi are the newest graduates of the Mississippi Youth Challenge Program at Camp Shelby. Graduation exercises for Class 37 of the Challenge Academy were held Saturday morning at the Forrest County Multi-Purpose Center.
Youth Challenge is a 22-week, military-style program of physical and academic training for drop-outs who want a second chance at getting a high school education.
221 cadets got their diplomas during the ceremony.
"It's exciting, I've been waiting on this forever," said Chelsey Warnsley, a graduate from Bay Springs.
"This is the most exciting feeling I've ever felt," said Thomas Ogden, another graduate from Moselle.
"I can do something with my life now, go to college, become somebody," said Travon May, a graduate from Columbia.
7,234 cadets have graduated from the program since it began in 1994.