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One hundred cadets from 39 counties will graduate from the Wisconsin National Guard Challenge Academy in a noon ceremony Saturday (Dec. 19) at Mauston High School in Mauston, Wisconsin.

The Challenge Academy re-shapes the lives of at-risk 16-to-18-year-olds. It uses 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.

Matthew S. Levatich, president and chief executive office of Harley-Davidson, Inc., is scheduled to address graduates along with their parents, relatives, mentors, and friends on hand to celebrate their success.

Twenty-seven states and Puerto Rico offer similar programs nationwide. More than 113,000 teens have successfully completed the National Guard youth programs since 1993.

The Wisconsin Challenge Academy will begin its next class Jan. 21, 2016. Applications are available for future classes by contacting the Challenge Academy at (866) 968-8422 or visiting their website.

NOTE: News media representatives are welcome to attend or contact the Academy for interviews with graduates. The graduation ceremony begins at noon at the Mauston High School gym, 800 Grayside Ave., Mauston, Wisconsin. The Challenge Academy drill team will perform at 11:15 a.m.

Graduates come from 39 Wisconsin counties: Barron (2); Brown (7); Buffalo (2); Chippewa (1); Clark (1); Columbia (1); Crawford (1); Dane (5); Dodge (4); Door (2); Eau Claire (1); Green (1); Jefferson (3); Juneau (2); Kenosha (4); Kewaunee (1); Lafayette (1); Langlade (1); Manitowoc (4); Marathon (1); Marquette (1); Milwaukee (18); Monroe (3); Outagamie (3); Ozaukee (1); Portage (3); Racine (2); Rock (5); St. Croix (2); Vilas (2); Walworth (1); Washburn (1); Washington (1); Waukesha (4); Waupaca (2); Waushara (1); Winnebago (2); Wood (2).