Sycamore Canyon Academy has partnered with professional dog trainer Jay Smith of Community Dog Training to provide the Shaping for Success program. Shaping for Success uses rescue dogs in a training program where teenage boys and the dogs learn from each other - students learn life skills while living and working with the dogs, while the dogs receive obedience training from the students. The dogs are provided by Foundation for Animals in Risk (FAIR).

Students selected for the program have been at Sycamore Canyon Academy for at least one month. They show positive change in behavior, carry a 3.0 grade average, and demonstrated that they have done enough work to get into the program. Being chosen for the program is an accomplishment for the students and earns them an improved level of trust and responsibility, as they are accountable for the dog assigned to them. Dogs live with the students and students clean their cages, feed, bathe, and exercise them. The Shaping for Success program lasts five weeks. Then, the trained dog is placed into a foster home until they are adopted out.

The Shaping for Success program invites community involvement. Volunteers are welcome to help them walk and train the dogs during the day while the students are in school. Donations are also accepted by Rite of Passage Sycamore Canyon Academy to help support the program.


Donations can be sent to Lois Carpenter P.O. Box 33 Oracle, AZ 85623. Specify that donations are for Shaping for Success. For more information on donating, contact Lois at 520-896-9399 or


Rite of Passage is dedicated to improving the lives of youth. 




This bulletin offers  information and updates on how our organization strives to fulfill this mission.























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