Established in 1902, Mount Ellis Academy (MEA) was founded as a Christian boarding high school for the youth of Montana. We are still located on the land donated to the school by the Rouse brothers all those years ago. For over 120 years, God’s Hand has never been far from this school.
In 1952, God provided direction for MEA by allowing us to acquire the Bear Canyon Ski Hill beginning MEA’s foray into enriched outdoor experiences for our students. This has grown into our Outdoor School program, Lifetime Activities, as well as a variety of other opportunities to get out to learn and explore God’s amazing creation that surrounds our Bozeman campus. Many times throughout our history, God’s hand has opened the floodgates of heaven to keep our ministry going in reaching His youth.
We are striving to create a sustainable future for MEA as we prepare for our next 120+ years of ministry. Our next big step forward is a long-term goal over the next 3-5 years of $4.5 Million to augment our “only at Mt. Ellis” activities, further develop our Trade Program offerings as well as develop new programs that enhance the learning experience at MEA, and to create a vibrant indoor and outdoor environment conducive to creativity and learning.
We have progress on the new faculty house!! Bryce Rasmussen, Senior, has taken on the framing and general contracting of the house as his Senior Project. He has already had several students volunteer to help and they can be seen in the above photo beginning the framing process. It is not only heart-warming but also encouraging to see our students involved in this project as they give their own time and energy to build something that will last for future generations. If you would like to learn of ways that you can be involved in this project, please contact Kebrina Vinglas @ firstname.lastname@example.org or 406-587-5178 or you can donate to the faculty house here: https://factsmgtadmin.com/give/appeal/UNrMcyWmQ.
Annual Agape Feast Closes Year on Spiritual High Note
At the top of Mount Ellis Academy’s legendary ski hill, the students of MEA gathered for the very last vespers of the year. Most years, the Agape Feast has been held at the base of the hill in the lodge, but a couple teachers decided to get creative this year. After being chauffeured in trucks by various staff members up the ski hill’s steep, grassy slope, we were met with a peaceful, pretty view. A cross was set up just before the big flat of ground at the top just before the ground dipped into its descent towards the base, and there were plenty of blankets laid on the ground and logs set up for people to sit on. The smell of burgers being grilled was tantalizing and we could hardly wait to eat as we fellowshipped before everything began.
After our meal, Mr. Ellis, Math teacher, led out in a song service. It was incredible to sing on top of our hill: everyone’s voices echoing back from the mountains surrounding us, the slowly sinking sun creating a wonderful golden hour, and we felt on top of our little world. Mrs. Vinglas, Development Director,, blessed our evening with a very touching talk about how there is always a door, always a path to take, and God is there for us no matter what door we go through. Mr. Stuart, Science, then took the front and we partook in communion, drinking grape juice in each other’s presence to help remind us of Jesus’ gift and that he chose the door that led to saving us. Then, as we do every year at the Agape Feast, we closed the evening with the rose ceremony. Every student and staff member was given four roses, and were instructed to gift them to people they appreciate, want to say “sorry” to, or just want to show a little extra love. The sounds of laughter filled the evening air as people exchanged roses, the flowers almost never settling in one’s hand before they were passed to another in overwhelming gratitude. After spending a good amount of time milling about, expressing our appreciation, it was announced that it was time to clean up and return to campus. Everyone lent a helping hand and we descended the hill in no time, feeling blessed and satisfied from an evening full of fellowship and reconnection with our friends and God.
~Ava Rogers, Junior
Track and Field Day Brings Good-Natured Competition to the Finish Line
The toe of my shoe lay on the front of the starting line. My knee was bent at a 45 degree angle, and I drew in a long deep breath. My head swiveled to face my competition. His eyes pointed at the finish line just 50 meters away, he barely moved in anticipation. My head quickly shifted back into position as I heard the countdown begin.
“Okay here we go, Three…” I shifted my shoe.
“Two…” My eyes narrowed, and my weight moved to the front of my body.
”One!” I took off, lunging forward with all of my strength. I gave all of my effort into my sprint. I felt good, the wind on my face, as it could not keep up with my speed. As I turn, I see my opponent, several paces ahead of me, dive for the finish line. Out of breath, he turns to me with a grin. I guess that’s what I get for taking on Mr. Stuart.
It’s always a great time of year, when the students break out their athletic and competitive side for track and field day. This year we started things off with the mile run. Students started off with a quick pace, all in hopes of beating the person in front of them. From there, the students showed off their talents in the typical track and field day events. I look forward to this day every year because I am motivated to push myself and I am brought closer to my friends as I go head to head in friendly competition. I hope that everyone else had just as much fun as I did.
~Tavi Stuart, Junior
Join us for our Spring Concerts! Our student musicians have been working hard to prepare for this special event.
2nd Annual ’70s Party
The 2nd (annual?) ‘70s get-together happens on Thursday, April 13, 7:30pm, in the Alloway Dining Hall. Be there! Encourage classmates to join you. Catch up, visit, enjoy some snacks—to the background of ‘70s music.
This year’s special guest speaker will be Gene Dotolo, ’73.
We are looking forward to having you return to campus! If you would like to reserve a room in our Guest Services Building, please contact Miriam Wright, Guest Services Director at 406.587.5178 ext 115. Rooms are limited so call to reserve your room today! Any questions regarding Alumni weekend, please contact Kebrina Vinglas at 406.587.5178 ext 105 or email email@example.com. Please check the website here to register and for any updates: https://mtellis.org/alumni/
MEA Offers Trade Programs with Certification
One of our core missions at Mt. Ellis Academy is to help our students develop their God-given gifts. For some of our students, this means preparing them for the academic rigors of college, but that isn’t the case for all our students. With the major labor shortage around the country across all trades and the rising cost of college education, there is an increasing need to equip our young people with usable skills to enter the work force. It is for this reason that we have taken the first step in developing our trade programs so that we can fulfill our mission to develop all our students’ God-given gifts so that they may be more prepared to charge into adulthood and serve in His Kingdom.
Mt. Ellis Academy (MEA) has launched its first cohort of HVAC training. Today, there are less than 100 Certified Master HVAC Educators around the country, and MEA has partnered with Montana Trade School (MTS) to offer dual-learning opportunities for our students. Program participants will work toward both their high school graduation and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) certification. Students will learn advancements in technology to enhance HVAC training, skills, and marketability to employers. Upon completion of this 2-year program, students will receive EPA certification, enabling them to enter the workforce as a level 1 technician with a starting wage of $25-$30/hour.
The Junior and Senior level course is taught by Framo Rimoni, an RSI HVAC/R graduate with over 31 years of experience in residential, commercial, and industrial HVAC service. He is assisted by Randy Wright, a licensed general contractor with over 35 years’ experience in the industry. The six students in this first cohort (four boys and two girls) meet 4 afternoons/week on campus as they gain practical knowledge towards their certification.
As we look to the future, we recognize the need to continue to offer a variety of training opportunities so that our students can be prepared to enter college, or if they choose, to further their training in a trade. Some ideas that we are looking to develop in the future include auto mechanics, welding, plumbing, coding, electrical, and construction sciences.
Ski The Summit
Attention all 7th-11th graders! You are invited to join us for Ski the Summit and Academy Days February 5-7, 2023. We are excited to combine two fun events into a 3 day experience. Pastor Douglas Elsey is returning as our special Guest Speaker, and we have lots of fun activities planned for those who don’t ski/snowboard. Come for Sunday’s Academy Days event and Bear Canyon, experience Bridger Bowl’s Cold Smoke and Big Sky’s epic runs, or if you’d rather not ski/board you can participate in the mini courses that we will be offering on campus. Whichever option you choose, you won’t regret adventuring with us! Registration deadline is Wednesday, January 18. Questions? Contact the school at 406.587.5178 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
MEA students cliff jump and play in the water in the Crazy Mountains. We like to get out and experience creation! Our weekends may include rest, but they also provide opportunities for adventure! #AdventureStartsHere