Wednesday, December 20th marked an important milestone for nine students enrolled in the Shepherd’s Hill Academy (SHA) program. Students graduated from their time in the 12-month therapeutic program, while high school seniors were also awarded their earned high school diplomas.



Shepherd’s Hill Academy is a Christ-centered boarding school for teenagers between the ages of 12 and 17 who are struggling with certain issues in life. Upon entering the program, students are enrolled in the Georgia state accredited on-site academy where they work with certified teachers to pursue academic success. The unique environment and small class sizes at SHA allow teachers to partner with both the student and their parents to create individual goals and plans of success for each student. Whether a student is needing remedial assistance, structure, college prep/AP courses, or a setting more conducive to their success, SHA offers a personalized education and rigorous course materials.

Female Student at graduation

Seven high school seniors at Shepherd’s Hill Academy have completed the necessary course materials and have earned their high school diplomas for the winter graduation ceremony. Family and friends have traveled from various states across the country to witness this proud moment for their child.

During the ceremony, one graduate commented in their speech: “I’m standing here a different person today… I came with a hard heart and destructive lifestyle. But the walls are broken down with a will to do what is right… The Lord knew my heart in the midst of all that was going on. He directed my parents to SHA and He changed my story.”

Founder of Shepherd's Hill Academy at Graduation

Trace Embry, Founder and Director of Shepherd’s Hill Academy challenged students by saying: “Get into a habit of telling your friends and neighbors where you’ve been, what you walked through, and where you are going… Commit your plans to the Lord and you will not fail… I really want you to succeed. I really want you to be world changers!”

All of the graduating seniors from SHA pursuing a post-secondary education have been accepted into a program. Students are well on their way to achieving their dreams, which just 12 months ago may have seemed unachievable. Central Georgia Tech, Keiser University, Toccoa Falls College, Milligan Collage, and the University of Colorado/Boulder are just a few of the schools eager to accept these distinguished graduates.

Students will be pursuing their passions with studies in programs such as Welding, Nursing, and Elementary Education.

Shepherd’s Hill Academy Principal, Mr. Steve Schyck, added: “These seniors are the reason I’m the lucky one. I get to work with each of them to set goals for their future. Each of these graduates, in January of 2018, will be entering the workforce, a 2-year, or a 4-year school. I get to play a role in that.”

Two students who were not high school seniors also received recognition at the graduation ceremony for completing the SHA 12-month program. These students will be able to transfer their Shepherd’s Hill Academy school credits to another school when they return home in order to continue their studies and pursue their passions.

Shepherd’s Hill Academy is incredibly proud of all the students recognized at this year’s winter graduation ceremony. The staff of SHA wish these students all the best and success in their future endeavors.

Shepherd’s Hill Academy is a nonprofit 501(c)3 Christ-centered boarding school for troubled teens ages 12-17. The program includes: therapeutic services (individual, family, group and equine therapy), a wilderness component, and a fully accredited academy. The program is funded through tuition, as well as donor support from community members, businesses and churches.

For more information on how you can be a part of helping teens in crisis, please contact Director of Marketing, Lane Taylor, at 706-703-4188, or