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Your Teen Will See the World and Their Place in the World with New Eyes.



We have an amazing set of staff who are here for the long term, which is exactly what this campus, and what these students, need. Ultimately, we want to accomplish the organization’s mission, which is changing hearts and bringing hope to individuals, families, and communities

Andrew Stroup: Campus Director

, StaffAndrew Stroup is the campus director of Caribbean Mountain Academy. He has been committed to children and families for his entire career. He began by obtaining a double major in Youth Ministry and Biblical Studies from Grace College in Winona Lake Indiana. In 2008, Andrew began working at Lifeline Youth & Family Services as a direct care staff at Pierceton Woods Academy. During Andrew’s almost 10 years of leadership at PWA, he became a certified Therapeutic Crisis Intervention Instructor by the Residential Child Care Project based at Cornell University. He was also certified by IN-AJSOP (Indiana Association of Juvenile Sex Offender Practitioners) as a Credentialed Sexually Abusive Youth Professional (CSAYP) for working with sexually abusive youth in Indiana. He also completed his Master’s in Business Administration in 2017. Andrew’s love for youth and family ministry made his transition to CMA a natural fit, so in April 2017 he transitioned with his wife Erin and their 4 kids to continue their work helping families be restored.

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John Pierce: Program Director

, StaffJohn Pierce is the Program Director at Caribbean Mountain Academy. He started in this role in the summer of 2021 after moving to campus with his wife, Rebekah, and their four children: Rosie, Joshua, Jesse, and Ruby. Before starting at CMA, John worked for several years in Education as a teacher and school administrator. Much of that experience was within alternative Education, focusing on innovative ways to engage students and promote a positive learning climate. He also led his staff in gaining professional development in supporting adolescents with multiple barriers to learning and being a trauma-informed school. John also previously worked in the field of accounting, tax, and business management. He received an Associate’s degree in Biblical Studies in 2006, a Bachelors’s in Education in 2013, and a Master’s in Education in 2017. His educational background and various career experiences prepared him for success in his current role as Program Director at CMA.

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Kenneth Winter: Counselor/Therapist

, StaffKenneth Winter is a counselor/therapist at Caribbean Mountain Academy. He has a Bachelors’s degree in Education and a Master of Science Degree in Mental Health Counseling. Kenneth has prior experience at numerous youth-based programs such as the Juvenile Justice System, Private practice counseling at-risk teens suffering from addiction, and a residential drug treatment center. He has been a Royal Ranger (Boy Scout) Commander and Sunday school teacher for over thirty years. Ken has been married to the love of his life for over forty years and has raised seven of their own children and several foster kids. He enjoys the adventure built into the Dominican Republic and the wholesome atmosphere within the community at CMA.

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Ashlyn Fawley: Counselor

, StaffAshlyn Fawley is a counselor at Caribbean Mountain Academy. She has been passionate about bringing restoration and hope to the world around her since a young age. She received her undergraduate degree in counseling at Grace College in Winona Lake, IN in 2012 and subsequently held a variety of roles: assisting middle and high school-aged youth in the schools, aiding in local and national disaster relief through the American Red Cross, and supporting the development of a women’s addiction rehabilitation program. Ashlyn went on to pursue her master’s degree and licensure in social work, working in healthcare and community mental health settings, specifically in addictions therapy. God opened the door to serve as a therapist at CMA in the summer of 2020, where Ashlyn appreciates the opportunity to serve alongside her husband and three small children. She loves to experience and learn from other cultures, and share in discovering more about the greatness of a globally present, all-knowing, and all-powerful God with her family.

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Jon Rex: Clinical Coordinator

, StaffJon Rex is the male counselor at Caribbean Mountain Academy. He earned his bachelor of arts in both sociology and counseling at Grace College in Winona Lake, IN. He then went on to get his Masters also at Grace completing his program in 2017. Jon received a portion of his clinical experience from Lifeline at their residential facility in Pierceton, IN working with male teenagers in the court system. Prior to finishing his clinical hours he was told of a job opening to serve at-risk teens in the Dominican Republic through Crosswinds. Six months later he and his wife moved to the DR in hopes to teach and model for the students how to cultivate positive relationships. All with the driving purpose to share with them the love of Christ. Jon enjoys a wide range of activities in his spare time that includes playing board games, doing outside activities (running, biking, and/or hiking), playing video games, but what he enjoys most is spending time with his wife.

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Andrew Stuck: Education Coordinator

, StaffAndrew Stuck is the Education Coordinator at Caribbean Mountain Academy. His responsibilities include overseeing the education of all the students as well as providing the campus with a healthy dose of sarcasm. He is a third-generation missionary, raised in Ecuador to church-planting parents. He graduated from Bethel College with a degree in Social Studies Education. He holds certifications in TCI and CPR and is working towards a Masters in Educational Leadership. His diverse educational background includes teaching English in South Korea, working in a middle school life skills classroom, coaching mentally disabled adults, and supervising the education of teenagers in a court-placement residential program. Outside of the classroom, he keeps busy making life an adventure for his four children. He and his wife enjoy hiking, reading, board games, and debating which is the best iteration of Doctor Who.

Favorite Part about working at CMA: Witnessing the “aha” moments in students’ relationships with parents and with God.

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Kim Hembry: Missions Coordinator

, StaffKim Hembry is a native Texan that has a heart for teaching, training, and equipping individuals and communities to walk in healing and freedom from various forms of bondage, trauma, and addiction. She comes to us with several years of teaching experience that has been gained by serving in education both domestically and internationally since 2009. Also, she has worked with at-risk youth by serving at a therapeutic boarding school in Texas, by conducting an intervention program at a juvenile detention center, and by participating in other forms of outreach and restoration programs for youth and women that have experienced varying degrees of trauma. Prior to coming to Caribbean Mountain Academy, Kim had several opportunities to serve on the foreign mission field, including short-term trips to Guatemala, Costa Rica, Germany, Israel, and Egypt, as well as living in Guatemala for a total of three and a half years over two separate long-term assignments. Kim just recently graduated from Agua Viva, a Bible Institute and Seminary in Guatemala, where she finished a program in theological studies. She is also in the process of completing a mental health coach certification program under the American Association of Christian Counselors. When Kim has spare time, she enjoys a variety of different activities, including outdoor adventures like hiking, running, or kayaking, as well as reading, writing, playing board games, or participating in various forms of art. It’s common to find Kim with a cup of coffee in hand and enjoying a wide array of conversations with those that surround her, sometimes pondering deep concepts, and at other times, delighting in lighthearted conversation that’s likely laced with puns and infectious laughter. Kim is expectant for all that awaits her as she joins the Caribbean Mountain Academy team and looks forward to seeing the Lord bring forth the fruit of transformation in the lives of the youth and families that she will get to serve at Caribbean Mountain.

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Mark Bemenderfer: Staff Support Coordinator

, StaffMark has been involved in missions for more than 25 years, living in east Asia with his family for most of that time. While his ministry primarily focused on personal evangelism and discipleship, he and his wife also saw the need for family and parenting discipleship. As they raised their children on the mission field and ministered to college students and young professionals, they saw the importance of a godly family in preparing the next generation for faith in Christ and service for His kingdom. They appreciate CMA’s commitment to discipline youth in need and counseling and training their families so that the whole can be strengthened in Christ and a foundation laid for future growth in Christ. Seeing the intensity of ministry that CMA staff pour out, they are burdened with a desire to do whatever they can to pour into the staff, to keep them spiritually and emotionally healthy to keep serving families in crisis!

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Mykayla Hurtekant:
Program Coordinator

, StaffMykayla Hurtekant grew up in Northern Indiana. Mykayla spent her years after high school working at a ministry dedicated to serving inner-city youth. She received a CNA license from Ivy Tech, before accepting an internship in Costa Rica where she lived for 6 months. She works at CMA as the lead Girl’s house staff.

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Jocabed Reyes: Youth Coach

, StaffJocabed Reyes is a youth coach at Caribbean Mountain Academy. She grew up working with her family to help those struggling in her community, including the homeless and those with emotional and addiction problems. She enjoyed being a youth leader in her church where she helped teenagers learn about God and serve the community. She is currently studying clinical psychology with the goal of getting her master’s degree to continue helping others. Jocabed grew up in Jarabacoa in the central Dominican Republic. She loves hiking, riding her motorcycle in the mountains, and visiting local rivers with family and friends. Her favorite part about working at CMA is building relationships with students through one on one conversations and helping them improve their lives.

Click here to support Jocabed Reyes.

Daniel Vincent Schlenker: Youth Coach

, StaffDaniel Vincent Schlenker serves as Youth Coach at Caribbean Mountain Academy. Prior to coming to CMA, Daniel worked at a Christian Therapeutic Boarding School for Struggling Youth in the Kansas City area for 9 years. Daniel served in several roles including Mentor/house staff, volunteer and service project coordinator, Director of Activities, teaching assistant, campus cook, and Domestic & Haiti Mission Trip Coordinator. Throughout all his years there Daniel was most passionate about the mentoring and discipleship of youth and young adults. Daniel loves cooking and finds creative ways to integrate it into most days; he finds it to be one of the best ways to encourage as well as to mentor and teach the students. Daniel is excited to have the opportunity to express his heart for worship getting to sing at church on campus as well as be able to practice and apply his Minor in Spanish.

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Hope Schmidt: Youth Coach

, StaffHope Schmidt works directly with students at Caribbean Mountain Academy as a youth coach. She grew up as the oldest of nine, home-schooled siblings in a family where building forts, climbing trees, and sword-fighting with sticks were normal occurrences. An author of young adult fantasy and speculative fiction, Hope has a passion for helping teens understand the truth of God’s promises through the darkest of situations. She continues to write, study God’s word, and prepare answers for common objections to Christianity. In her free time, she loves reading, resting in a hammock, and hanging out with friends. Her favorite part of working at CMA is building relationships with students and being allowed the privilege of watching them learn and grow.

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Benjamin Sede: Director of Operations

, StaffBenjamin Sede is our Chaplain at CMA. He served as a Youth Pastor for seven years at the Dominican Methodist Free Church while serving as Scoutmaster for the Dominican Scout Association in San Pedro de Macoris, D.R. He graduated in 2013 from Universidad Nacional Evangelica, UNEV (a Christian University) in Santo Domingo, D.R. with a Bachelor Degree in Business Administration. He worked for a worldwide sales and customer care business as a senior supervisor when he resigned to respond to God’s call into the ministry as a Seminarian Student. While Erick Benjamin was part of the Resident Life Staff at Hillcrest Academy, he also served as the Baseball Coach. He served for nearly two years as Youth Pastor at Messiah Lutheran Church in Underwood, MN. Erick graduated with the Master of Divinity, M.Div. in the spring of 2018. In the Fall of 2019, Erick accepted the call to serve as Campus Pastor at Caribbean Mountain Academy where he brings his vast international leadership experiences with Youths, Churches, and families. He gets to provide spiritual care and biblical teaching to the CMA Staff, the Students, their families, and also to the Missionary English-speaking community in Jarabacoa, Dominican Republic Erick enjoys spending quality time with his fiancé Fabiola and planning their wedding for September 2020. Erick’s Favorite part of CMA is being able to spend time individually with students and staff during mealtime.

Click here to support Erick Benjamin.

Arturo Tejada: Youth Coach/House Leader

, StaffArturo Tejada is a Youth Coach and House Leader at Caribbean Mountain Academy. He and his wife, Sara Beth, are passionate about serving and helping students. Before starting at CMA, Arturo came to know Jesus through a ministry called Young Life and began serving teenagers from Santo Domingo, where Arturo is also from. He loves sharing the good news of Jesus and helps bring transformation to families and students with his testimony. He sees the work of God present on the campus of CMA. In his own words: “I have seen the Holy Spirit moving and changing lives—the lives of students, staff, and even my own.” Arturo has the opportunity to see students grow in their daily work despite all the pain and struggles they face. Arturo and Sara Beth request prayer for strength and wisdom to faithfully serve at CMA.

Click here to support Arturo Tejada.

Caleb Russell: Youth Coach

, StaffCaleb Russell is a Youth Coach at Caribbean Mountain Academy. His family served as missionaries in the Philippines for six years. Even after returning to the United States, Caleb and his family continued to work in ministry by serving through Christian programs within the public schools and a Christian summer camp. Caleb attended the undergraduate program at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, North Carolina, and graduated with a BA in Writing and a minor in Pastoral Ministry. Caleb enjoys spending time with others as well as spending time reading and writing.

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therapeutic boarding schools

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Therapeutic Boarding Schools | About Caribbean Mountain Academy Staff

The Caribbean therapeutic boarding school staff is a team of compassionate professionals who help struggling teens heal and succeed in life.