a program of

How it works:

​Champions creates an opportunity for WMHS students to earn a $200 incentive by reaching customized academic and life goals.
Each semester, students grades 9-12 are paired with a mentor. Often, the mentor is a favorite teacher, administrator, counselor, or other WMHS employee. Next, students are provided with a customized goal(s) that they work toward for the duration of the semester.
Successful students are invited to celebrate their achievement, share a meal, and receive their rewards at the Champions banquet. 

​The Champions of Wayne program is now operated by The guidance Center.  The Champions program, open to all students at Wayne Memorial High School, combines adult mentoring, academic and life goal setting and achievement recognition that results in individualized prescriptions for success and financial rewards. The program’s founding sponsors are Richard & Leslie Helppie of The Helppie Family Charitable Foundation and Jeff & Lisa Styers of Arrow Cares. Both founding sponsors have made long term pledged commitments to continue supporting The Champions of Wayne program.

As Champions joins The Guidance Center, the Champions mission remains unchanged and continues as originally developed and maintains its name. Historically, it has received major funding from The Helppie Family Charitable Foundation, which continues at this transition and for the next five years as the program is operated and expanded at The Guidance Center. Jeff & Lisa Styers of Arrow Cares have also made pledges to continue funding the program. The agency also will seek additional and new funders to achieve the goals of the program and enhance student impact.

Richard Helppie, co-founder of the Helppie Family Charitable Foundation says, “Champions of Wayne has had a material positive impact on both individual students and the learning culture at Wayne Memorial. Leslie and I have long sought a way to give Champions a pathway to perpetuity. By combining with the outstanding management of TGC, we believe that the program’s future is very bright.”


Key points:

  • The mission and the student-facing activities and the principles of goal setting, mentorship, reward and recognition remain.
  • Champions of Wayne now operates as a defined and specific program within TGC’s Children and Youth Services.
  • The Helppie Family Charitable Foundation continues to fund the program through a formal multi-year donor agreement. New and additional funders also are needed.
  • The Guidance Center now provides staff, fund raising and administration.