HII’s Petters Encourages Students to Live the American Dream

By Eric Haun
Friday, June 06, 2014
HII President and CEO Mike Petters addresses An Achievable Dream’s 2014 graduating class. (Photo courtesy of Helen’s Place Photography)

HII President and CEO Mike Petters Encourages An Achievable Dream's 2014 Graduates to Live the American Dream

Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) President and CEO Mike Petters served as the commencement speaker Thursday at the graduation ceremony for An Achievable Dream's "Class of 2014—The Petters Family Scholars." Petters, his wife, Nancy, their daughters and their son-in-law sponsored the class.

Dedicated to the belief that all children can learn and succeed regardless of their economic status, An Achievable Dream Academy and Middle & High School go beyond academics to provide students with a comprehensive SAME (social, academic and moral education) curriculum to develop productive citizens upon graduation.

Petters shared his pride for the group of 54 graduates that he and his wife have befriended since they were announced as the class sponsors in November 2013.

"You are graduating from a school aptly named An Achievable Dream," he said, "and you've achieved so much. I believe you could easily substitute the word 'American' for 'achievable'   because many of the things you have achieved and many of the things you've yet to achieve are possible—are achievable—because you live in America. My wish, my advice for you, is that as you go forth in life, whatever path you choose to take, you also become an ambassador for the American Dream."

Petters delivered his remarks in the form of a letter he read to the graduates. Copies of the letter were given to each student. (The full text is available here: http://www.huntingtoningalls.com/about/docs/cmp_achievable_dream05june14.pdf.)

"They are so generous and caring to help fund our dreams," said Nasir Curry, a 2014 graduate. "The Petters took the time to really get to know us as individuals. We come from one school, but each of us is so different. The Petters took the time and energy to be a part of our senior year adventure."

Classmate Ja'Had Mills agreed. "I am overwhelmed with everything Mr. and Mrs. Petters have done for me and my senior class," he said. "They are so down-to-earth and really got to know us. We immediately felt connected." 

An Achievable Dream operates two nationally recognized schools for grades K-12 through a unique partnership with Newport News Public Schools. A third school serving K-12 students will open in July 2014 in partnership with Virginia Beach City Public Schools.


  • Mike and Nancy Petters congratulate An Achievable Dream Class of 2014 Valedictorian Taylor Braxton (left) and Salutatorian Briana Jones (right) for their achievements. (Photo courtesy of An Achievable Dream)

    Mike and Nancy Petters congratulate An Achievable Dream Class of 2014 Valedictorian Taylor Braxton (left) and Salutatorian Briana Jones (right) for their achievements. (Photo courtesy of An Achievable Dream)

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