Parents: Sam and Nicole Hughes
Cadet: Sean Hughes. Sean is a senior who is a cadet corps officer. He is on the rifle team and is involved in Railsplitters Club.
Hometown: Saint Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands
Sam says as a parent, he appreciates the structure MMA provides cadets and cites this aspect of a military education as directly related to his son’s successes. Despite being highly structured, Sam says MMA encourages the cadets to set their own goals and achieve them. “People get hung up on the military-style aspect instead of looking at it as a structure and a goal program that these young men can access and really push them to reach their potential.” Additionally, Nicole says as Sean’s homeschool teacher for years, she hadn’t seen him as goal-oriented as he is after he began attending MMA.
Along with enabling cadets to set and achieve goals, MMA offers chances for leadership because it relies on a student-run corps, which Nicole says is an opportunity that would be less tangible in other settings. “It gives kids who might not necessarily win the popularity contest for leadership positions in a public or private school a real opportunity because the teachers and the leaders there at the school recognize the potential that is in each of these young men and then puts it to the test and says, ‘Here, you’re going to hone those skills.’”
Sam says the number of international students at MMA surprised him when Sean first visited. Nicole says this contributes to an environment that appreciates diversity and supports learning. “It is a truly unique opportunity to live and learn and grow with people all over the world,” says Nicole, adding that the conglomeration of cultures helps cadets expand their worldviews.