ACCE Student Dancing Her Way to Higher Education

Giles County, VA- There are mere weeks left until the Muddy ACCE Race, but we’re helping to set these young people up for a lifetime. The Giles ACCE program asked participants what it means to them to be a part of the process (trust us, they’ll tell you it’s a process). Today we hear from Madison Keaton, an Access to Community College Education student.

Student sitting at desk as part of work with ACCE program
Madison Keaton a current Giles ACCE Student

From Madison: “Throughout
high school, I knew that I wanted to go to college after I graduated. However,
the thought of having so much student debt overwhelmed me.  Not only would this debt most likely cause my
family and me financial stress while I was in college, this stress would
continue for many years after while I tried to pay off my student loans.  When I learned of the ACCE Program in tenth
grade, I thought it was a great idea, and I decided then that I wanted to be a
part of it.  Now that I have graduated
from Narrows High School, and am a part of the ACCE Program, I can truly see
how beneficial it is.  The ACCE Program
gives me the opportunity to go to New River Community College for free as long
as I complete 100 hours of community service. 
This not only allows me to save my money for future expenses, it also
allows me to gain valuable work experience as well as establish new
relationships with different individuals. 
Even though I was obligated to participate in the community service, I
found it very rewarding.  I worked at the
county administration office. I not only learned more about how government
works, but I was also able to work alongside several outstanding
individuals.  I am taking general studies
courses at NRCC.  After this, I am going
to either move on to a four-year college and study special education, or,
become a professional dancer.  I have
been a competitive dancer since I was young. I would love to combine dancing
and work with the special-needs community. 

to the ACCE Program, I am much better prepared; not only at this point in my
life, but for years to come.”

The Muddy ACCE Race, to be held on September 21, 2019 at the Glen Lyn Park was created to raise funds for the ACCE Program in Giles County. Participants of the 2019 MAR will directly support scholarships for the 65 students involved in the program this year while continuing the spirit of community and support these students feel. The Muddy ACCE Race is a 5k, 50+ mud obstacle course event that is challenging for elite runners and family friendly. There is a youth mud pit area and fun categories for participants to win accolades. Registration is now open at and information on vending or sponsoring the event can be found on the website as well.

Muddy ACCE Race


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contact Cora Gnegy, Tourism Marketing Director. We can arrange and assist with
any media needs.


Giles County, Virginia is located in Southwest Virginia
approximately 40 minutes south of Roanoke and just west of Blacksburg and
Virginia Tech. With easy access to the New River, world
class dining and lodging properties, and historical attractions for the entire
family, Giles offers adventure in Virginia’s Mountain Playground™. Come find
your playground at our Visitors Center located at 203 N Main Street,
Pearisburg, VA 24134 or find us online at or by calling