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PROGRAM MANAGER I - Management Service

Deputy Director, Maryland Freestate Challenge Academy

Recruitment #22-005476-0024


The Maryland Freestate Challenge Academy (FCA) is one of the original 10 state Challenge Programs.  FCA is a tuition-free program which offers at-risk adolescents 16 to 18 years old an opportunity to change their future for the better by providing the skills, education and self-discipline needed to become responsible, productive citizens. The initial program consists of a 22-week residential phase. During this phase the cadets learn self-discipline, leadership and responsibility. Participants live and work in a controlled military environment, encouraging teamwork and personal growth. A 12-month post-residential phase focuses on helping enroll graduates in continued education, technical school programs or entry-level employment. During the post-residential phase, students are assisted by at least one trained mentor from the community for further development. Help young Marylanders who want and deserve the opportunity to acquire their GED and a path to a better future.  Join and help lead a dynamic team of individuals who have dedicated themselves to helping these young people.


Grade 19


Maryland National Guard Freestate Challenge Academy  
Aberdeen Proving Grounds (APG) - Edgewood Area  
Building E4230 Beal Road
Gunpowder, Maryland 21010

Main Purpose of Job

This position reports directly to the Director of the Maryland National Guard Freestate Challenge Academy and is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Academy, including staff coordination and project management. If the Director is unavailable, the Deputy Director assumes the responsibilities of the Director and thus, should be knowledgeable of those duties and responsibilities as well. This is a management service position and serves at the pleasure of the Appointing Authority.


Duties include but are not limited to: 

 ● Works under the supervision of the Director in the management of day-to-day operation of the Maryland   National Guard quasi-military comprehensive youth training and development program for at risk teens 
 ● Provides input in evaluating and establishing program standards within Federal and State guidelines 
 ● Provides input to the organizational budget 
 ● Provides input in the program content to ensure attainment of the Program’s Eight Core Components 
 ● Oversee multiple and diverse programs supporting the students and operations of the Freestate Challenge Academy 
 ● Interacts with stakeholders, parents and students to integrate program and operational requirements 
 ● Performs the daily walk around with maintenance for the program’s building (s), external donated/leased office/classroom space. 
 ● Performs duties of Safety and Risk Management Officer to enhance safe operations and minimize accidents and mishaps as a result of unsafe acts and/or condition 
 ● Compiles reports and data as directed by the Director 
 ● Attends and participates in various meetings for the Freestate Challenge Academy and, with the explicit approval of the Director, interfaces with public/private programs directed towards youth development 
 ● Special Projects and other duties as assigned


Education:   A Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university in the area of Social Services, Human Services, Behavioral Science or related field. 

Experience: Five years of administrative experience providing direct services and/or counseling to at risk juveniles in a professional environment. 

 Notes: Candidates may substitute U.S. Armed Forces military service experience as a commissioned office in Social Services classifications or Social Services specialty codes in the Social Science, Psychology and Welfare field of work, on a year-for-year basis for the required education


Preferred Qualifications:

   1) At least 2 years’ experience overseeing subordinate supervisors

   2) At least 2 years’ experience overseeing financial resources/budget

   3) Minimum of 4 years’ experience working with at risk juveniles in a quasi-military environment


You must have your COVID vaccination for this position.


1. Candidates for positions will be required to apply for a criminal background check as required by the Family Law Article, Section 5-561, Annotated Code of Maryland, as well as the ability to pass a Child Care and Federal background check in order to access the military installation and a review of the National Sex register.

2. Employees in this classification are required to successfully complete training as indicated by the National Challenge Program, such as one-week basis course for all Challenge Program staff and advanced courses on specific job responsibilities. 

3. Employees in this classification are subject to substance abuse testing in accordance with the Code of Maryland Regulations 17.04.09, Testing for Illegal Use of Drugs. 

4. This position also requires a valid Maryland Motor Vehicle operator's license class C with less than 5 points in order to operate state vehicles.

5. Employees in this classification may be subject to call-in 24 hours a day and, therefore, may be required to provide the employing agency with a telephone number where they can be reached. 

6. You must have your COVID vaccination for this position.


This is a Management Service position, and serves at the pleasure of Appointing Authority. A copy of your resume and cover letter must accompany your application.


This examination will consist of a rating of your education, training, and experience as presented on your application and as they relate to the requirements of the position. Therefore, it is important that you provide complete and accurate information on your application and please submit a resume and cover letter. 


This position is not subject to Bargaining MOU’s.



Military Veterans may qualify for additional bonus points towards certification.


A copy of your proof of eligibility (DD214) for Veterans’ Credit must be in this office and completely verified before Veterans’ Credit will be approved.



Online application process is STRONGLY preferred. If you are unable to apply online, you may submit a paper application to:

Maryland Military Department State Personnel Office

29th Division Street, Room B10 

Baltimore, MD 21201-2288


For questions regarding this recruitment, please contact Nick Pindale at Fax: 667-239-5550



TTY Users: call via Maryland Relay


As an equal opportunity employer Maryland is committed to recruiting, retaining and promoting employees who are reflective of the State’s diversity.

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