Attention - Applicants

Due to a lack of qualified applicants, the Wisconsin Challenge Academy will not have a class start in October.  We are continuing to recruit for Class 48 beginning in January, 2022.  All applications for the October class will automatically be shifted to the January class.


Attention - Class 47 Families - Update 8.23.21


Fort McCoy is assisting the Department of Defense and the State Department to provide temporary housing, sustainment, and support inside the United States for specified Afghan Special Immigration Visa applicants and their families, and other vulnerable Afghans, at Fort McCoy, Wisconsin.  These are people who assisted the United States in Afghanistan.

As Fort McCoy prepares to receive Afghan nationals, Challenge Academy operations will continue unaffected and no additional activity is expected in the vicinity of the Challenge Academy.

Comments from our families have been overwhelmingly supportive. However, a few have expressed concerns or have questions about Fort McCoy’s role in this mission and if any potential exists that it may impact your children/our students.

Your cadets are safe and in good hands, and we do not anticipate any impact on our program at this time.

The Challenge Academy is not authorized to release information about Fort McCoy or any of its operations. 

Please realize this is a fast-developing, noble, and extremely important mission, and the full details of this support by Fort McCoy are still being worked. We will keep you informed when we learn more. Your patience, understanding and support are greatly appreciated.

We appreciate your continued support and trust and look forward to continuing to make a positive impact with our current and future cadets.


The Wisconsin Challenge Academy is an alternative education program designed to reclaim the lives of at-risk youth and produce graduates with the values, skills, education and self-discipline necessary to succeed as adults.

Graduate Turner - Class 35
I am so GRATEFUL for the Challenge Academy and ALL the staff who have helped CHANGE so many young men and women lives, getting them all to see life in a good way, showing/teaching them self control, respect and making better choices in life… My son just graduated in Class 32! SO PROUD OF ALL of the cadets.

Leslie Kremer, Parent of Class 32 Graduate

I consider myself a fairly smart person, not because of my education, but because of what I’ve learned of my experience as a cadet, and from the opportunities Challenge opened up for me, like AmeriCorps for example.

Senior Cadet Fedie, Class 27 Graduate

Eligibility Criteria

Checkmark Blue

Males and Females 16 & 9 months - not yet 19

Checkmark Blue

Expelled, dropped out, not attending, or over one year behind in credits

Checkmark Blue

Not currently on parole or adult probation (juvenile supervision/probation is OK)

Checkmark Blue

Never charged, indicted, or convicted of a felony (as a juvenile or an adult)

Checkmark Blue

A citizen or legal resident of the United States and resident of Wisconsin

Checkmark Blue

Voluntary—no court orders or placements