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In August of 2008, two faculty members of the University of Central Arkansas Honors College were charged by their dean, Rick Scott, with designing a summer academy for local teens deemed to be at academic risk. The central goal of the program would be to offer selected honors college upperclassmen—beneficiaries of full-ride scholarships, compelling interdisciplinary seminars, and close faculty mentoring—an opportunity to share with struggling youngsters their pre-professional training as well as their own gifts of character and personality. Our hope was that the experience might serve as a meaningful intervention in the lives of adolescent students.
What resulted from the planning conducted by honors faculty members Doug Corbitt and Allison Wallace was a pilot for the Neptune Academy, launched in August 2009, and described herein by Corbitt and Wallace. Also included are reflections on the experience by two of the eight honors college students who served as the teaching staff: Corey Womack (a senior at the time in digital filmmaking) and Patrick Russell (a junior English major). We offer as well the following appendices: a sample schedule for a day of the Academy; registration forms; and a “what-to-expect” letter, sent out just before the start of the Neptune Academy. A six-minute video of highlights from the academy is available at .