Deep Young was created by Julie Cloninger in the summer of 2008. Julie taught Spanish at the Canton library for a group of homeschool students, sewing classes in her home, and was an active member in the Haywood County Home Educators. For several years, she was concerned for the homeschool students of Haywood County. While serving as treasurer and graduation coordinator of the local homeschool support group (HCHE), she was struck by how few high school students and parents stayed the course. Her own children were young and she didn't know the needs of home schooled high school students; however she saw friends working very diligently to satisfy the course requirements for high school students by providing classes like Latin, biology, and Spanish. When Julie heard Debra Bell, long time homeschooler, author, and founder of a family school in Pennsylvania share the benefits of a family school, she was convinced this was what Haywood County needed. Having a place for students to meet with their friends at a regularly scheduled time and to be challenged in the classroom through various enrichment courses would be a huge support to students and their parents. Julie developed the mission and atmosphere of Deep Young Academy to be equal parts social and academic. The Drama Club has performed Our Town and The Lottery. The art students had a gallery show in downtown Waynesville. The name Deep Young Academy is quite literal. Students are growing deeper academically, personally, spiritually, artistically, as well as relationally - and they are young!
The original board members were Connie Blanton, Maureen Miller, and Katie Schomberg. Together with Julie these ladies developed a 501(c)3 educational non-profit organization to come alongside parents on the homeschool journey to edify, encourage, and educate excellent students. Since the first year with 14 families enrolled to our over 40 families this year, Deep Young Academy serves the homeschool community with classes such as science, math, history, literature, writing, public speaking, short films, music, ceramics, and sewing. Deep Young students have received university scholarships for engineering, music, service, academics, and leadership, as well as opportunities to do mission work overseas.