Module 2: Overview of the ChalleNGe Program


List the eight core components for cadets in NGYCP.

Be exposed to the principles and attributes of NGYCP.

Consider benefits of mentoring.

Key Points

The National Guard Youth ChalleNGe Program (NGYCP) is a free, co-educational, preventative program for high school dropouts aged 16-18 years old.  The mission is “to intervene in the lives of at-risk youth and produce program graduates with the values, skills, education, and self-discipline necessary to succeed as adults.” The program accomplishes this mission through a structured 17 ½ month program that gives youth the opportunity to improve life skills and employment potential through development in core component areas

ChalleNGe is managed by the National Guard Bureau. The program embraces a “quasi-military” philosophy. Quasi means “resembling somebody or something in some ways, but not the same.” The program is based on principles such as self-discipline, teamwork, self-esteem, personal responsibility, ethics, goal setting, and community service. ChalleNGe is not a boot camp. Program graduates are not in any way required or expected to enlist in the military upon graduation. Cadets self-select into the program and are not forced into the program.


___ Review the Resources
___ Complete Activities
___ Complete the Module 2 assessment

1 Resources

  • 1 PDF - Mentor Fact Sheet: This document highlights some of the key aspects of the ChalleNGe program and the role of the mentor in the program.

  • 1 PDF - History of ChalleNGe: This document outlines the history of the ChalleNGe program.

    1 Audio - Radio Show about Wisconsin ChalleNGe: This section of the Bob Hague Radio Show discusses some of the successes of the various Cadets from the Wisconsin ChalleNGe Academy.

    1 Audio - Commercial for Alaska Academy: This is a radio commercial that outlines some of the skills a cadet will gain through the Alaska ChalleNGe Academy.

    1 Audio - Commercial for Tarheel ChalleNGe Academy: In this radio commercial, Mike Minter of the Carolina Panthers shares why it is important to never give up and how the ChalleNGe program can help.

    1 Audio - Commonwealth ChalleNGe: Col. Larry Apell and Cadet Michael Arroyo discuss the graduation rates and the role of the military approach to guiding youth.

1 Activities

  • Facebook: Like the ONGYCP page on Facebook to receive program notifications and comunicate with other Mentors, Parents, and Cadets.

    Mentoring Benefits to Cadet

    Mentoring Benefits to Mentor

    Improve academic performance

    Increased feelings of self-worth;

    Reduce the likelihood of dropping out of the ChalleNGe Program

    Collaborative problem solving

    Reduces the incidence of high risk behaviors such as substance use and abuse, carrying a weapon, unsafe sex and violence

    Increased social and volunteer activity

    Helps young people live up to their academic, emotional and social potential

    Increased patience

    Helps develop the competence and character to succeed as adults

    Improvement in relationships with other family members and unanticipated enjoyment in activities with youth


    A feeling of effectiveness


    Development of a new skill (listening and working with people)


    Expanded social network

    1 Can you list additional benefits to mentoring for the mentor? Mentee? Society?  Why did you decide to be a mentor?  Can you find your reason within the list? If not, add it.

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