206 graduate from Class 43 of Youth Challenge Progam - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

206 graduate from Class 43 of Youth Challenge Progam

206 cadets in Class 43 of the Youth Challenge Program graduated Saturday. 206 cadets in Class 43 of the Youth Challenge Program graduated Saturday.
HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) -

Dozens of former high school drop-outs from across Mississippi have gotten a new start in life, thanks to the Mississippi National Guard's Youth Challenge Program. 

A total of 206 cadets in Class 43 of the Challenge Academy received diplomas during a commencement ceremony at the Forrest County Multi-Purpose Facility Saturday. 

Youth Challenge is a 22-week, military-style program of academics and discipline that gives drop-outs a second chance at getting an education. 

"This is a once in a lifetime opportunity," said Codye Fuller, a Youth Challenge graduate from Silver Creek. "I'm so happy, I'm getting my diploma, I made it through 22 weeks."  

"I've experienced a lot of things that I never thought I would experience," said J'Shon Perkins, another graduate from Clinton. "But, it's been quite a challenge, just like in the name Youth Challenge Academy and it's a wonderful experience to be a part of it." 

A total of 8,422 cadets have graduated from the Youth Challenge Program in the last 20 years. 

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