The Nest Academy is a small private school with a vision to change the lives of our refugee, immigrant and under privileged students to become confident, educated, and successful first generation high school graduates.
educate. enrich, empower.
The Nest Academy, formerly One7 Academy, was founded by Mary Catherine (‘MC’) Hildreth in 2009. While homeschooling her three children and directing a nonprofit for refugee youth in the East Charlotte area, MC was also heading an after school tutoring program for K-12 grade refugees to help them advance educationally and offer support. It was through the tutoring program that major setbacks and overwhelming cases of illiteracy were discovered along with other educational obstacles and she was deeply troubled that these children were truly slipping through cracks in the educational system. They were struggling academically, socially and emotionally to the point of hopelessness.
MC felt compelled to do something immediately. She had a ‘vision’ of what would become the Nest Academy, and had the heart and determination to JUST GO FOR IT! The academy was founded on that vision for changing a broken system with five refugee girls, who were unable to read and write, who were hopeless and unwilling and unable to succeed.
The charge was simple. EDUCATE, ENRICH and EMPOWER them through education , a sense of COMMUNITY with LOVE and RESPECT and to encourage them to become confident, educated, accomplished, giving and successful first generation refugee high school graduates. WE HAVE SEEN GREAT SUCCESS.
The academy is UNIQUE, it is OUT OF THE BOX and unprecedented. We have created a custom learning environment that is multi age, multi grade and multi faceted. We integrate creative, performing and visual arts, music and rhythm therapy, welcome public speakers in the community to inspire students, offer cutting edge physical training, and many experiential opportunities outside of the classroom, much like those MC personally experienced growing up.
The academy offers a ‘gifted’ private school education to these refugees, immigrants and underprivileged youth, all from private funding, extending educational and extracurricular opportunities to equip them with the tools they need to make a difference in this world they were already having to navigate at a disadvantage.
The academy grew from 5 girls in 2009 to 10 girls in 2011, and to 20 girls in 2012. Then the addition of 5 boys in 2013, when our PRAYERS became LOUDER and MORE FREQUENT!!!
Our Nest has grown to 17 currently enrolled students and a total of 9 graduates this SPRING!!! Our students have come as far as Vietnam, Thailand, Congo, Ethiopia, Mexico, Iraq, Malaysia, Uganda, Mali, Argentina, and El Salvador.
Our students are taught the academic skills required to succeed, graduate high school and to pursue higher education. They are also being trained and empowered to become people of exceptional character, service and generosity. Graduating from the Academy has changed the course of the lives of our graduates. They are NOW first generation college attendees with a bright future that began at the NEST.
In 2019, we look back at our humble small beginnings, our progress over the past ten years and the great success of our amazing students. This fall we will celebrate our TENTH anniversary of opening our doors. The Nest Academy, a school that reflects love, values and excitement for the future.
educate, enrich, empower.
Founded from the vision to fulfill its mission in 2009, The Nest Academy began making a difference in the lives of 5 refugee girls, alleviating the barriers, obstacles and pressures of public school, and whose circumstances had stunted their academic success and were falling behind due to unmet individual needs. The academy grew from 5 girls in 2009 to 10 girls in 2011, and to 20 girls in 2012, and the addition of 5 boys in 2013. In 2019, we have 17 students and 1 graduating in the spring.
We would love to chat with you about how you can get plugged in at the The Nest Academy. We have so many opportunities of you to connect our Nest.