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MattR

How do I explain this to a scout?

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I have a scout that can't get Eagle. He's one of the best scouts I've ever had. More of an Eagle than most I've seen. He was a great SPL and everyone looked up to him. But, he didn't pay attention to the clock and did his Life board of review late. Part of this was due to the fact that he was putting so much time into the troop, While he is ultimately responsible, I also let him down. I think of all the scouts we've nagged to get things done on time, that don't come close to the caliber of this scout, and nobody paid attention because they just assumed he was taking care of everything. I can deal with my own stupidity, but what do I tell this scout? A lot of people say Eagle is junk but this kid made something of himself, learned a lot, and did some amazing things for the sole purpose of getting that medal.

 

I already talked to him and said there was a possibility the appeals process wouldn't work (and it didn't) and I told him he is who he is because of what he's done, and not because of a patch and he understands that. But still, any ideas how to recognize this scout for what he is?

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Agree with Nike. No disappointment, rather public pride and appreciation in this young man who chose to serve his troop and others first.

 

Done good MattR. Scouting builds boys into men by many methods, not by just advancement.

 

Plenty of very accomplished Life Scouts out here - Bill Gates Jr is just one.

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Neither of my sons made Eagle, because I chose not to nag them. They were both engaged in many worthwhile activities, including church, sports, student government, and jobs. I decided that if they wanted to make Eagle, it had to be THEIR effort, not mine. They are both now successful family men with good jobs and college degrees, and I couldn't be prouder of them.

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Congratulations on having the fortitude to assume that at least one of your scouts was taking care of everything. Hopefully you'll have the same fortitude for all of the other scouts. Just because boys from everywhere else in the world do math better, doesn't mean our boys are excused from backdating their own goals and figuring out when they need to get what done. Well, sounds like he's a first class scout (the term, not the patch). I've known college valedictorians to proudly put "Boy Scouts, Life rank" on their bio sketch. Probably the best recognition you could give is to invite him to become ASM. If he want's to work on venturing advancement, he could join a crew and still have a couple of years to earn Silver (or, whatever that'll be calling it). But, I doubt he's interested.

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Tell him to take pride in his accomplishments. If he's as good a man as you say , if he's about to be 18 invite him to be an ASM.

 

As a poster above me said, scouting is about more than advancement. Your Scout has proven that he is a successful product of Scouting even if he doesn't have the final rank. Congratulations to your Scout on a successful scouting career.

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I'm thinking some sort of "birthday"/"graduation" party/celebration is appropriate for any scout that stays with the troop until he ages out regardless of his rank. Are you celebrating rank (ECOH) or are you recognizing the contribution the boy has made? After all give me a First Class scout that has done it all and turns 18 in the troop and I'll take him over any 14 year old ""Eagle" that somehow manages to "disappear" after his ECOH.

 

Like I have said before, Eagle is nice, but there are other character measurements out there that I hold higher than rank.

 

Stosh

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I'd rather have a great Life Scout than a good Eagle. BSA is WAY over-emphasizing Eagle. I have a son who is heavily engaged in the Troop and does a lot of stuff for others but he often falls behind on advancement. Sometimes the difference was an organized parent. It is a good life lesson as well. I agree on asking him to be a ASM. If he is really into Scouting he will appreciate the respect.

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How about a nice letter of commendation or plaque from his SM, pointing out the good he has accomplished and the respect you have for him?

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How about a nice letter of commendation or plaque from his SM, pointing out the good he has accomplished and the respect you have for him?
Good point. Boys this age need references for anything these days. Make sure he knows he can use you and that you would give a favorable recommendation. You could even draft one "to whom it may concern" for him. That way, he'd already have the particulars ready for any last-minute interview that may come his way.

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How about a nice letter of commendation or plaque from his SM, pointing out the good he has accomplished and the respect you have for him?
that's exactly my thought process, qwazse.

besides the pride of accomplishment and bragging rights, etc.... A primary advantage to earning the eagle (and this is from my aged and experienced perspective, not having earned the rank) is for the resume.

A letter of commendation can mean a lot for that same purpose.

 

I was actually thinking of a letter, not written "to whom it may concern", but to "the scout and all who view this letter".... something printed nicely that would be suitable for framing but that could also accompany job or college applications as a reference letter. It might also serve as a keepsake or reminder of good things for the scout.

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I did tell him I'd write a letter of recommendation for any place. The idea of writing it now and giving it to him is a good idea.

 

I was thinking about a story about someone that dealt with failure well. Lincoln was a complete failure until he became president. Or maybe something along the lines of "Not only is character what you do when nobody is looking, but nobody can give it to you or pin it on you. You have to earn it."

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I did tell him I'd write a letter of recommendation for any place. The idea of writing it now and giving it to him is a good idea.

 

I was thinking about a story about someone that dealt with failure well. Lincoln was a complete failure until he became president. Or maybe something along the lines of "Not only is character what you do when nobody is looking, but nobody can give it to you or pin it on you. You have to earn it."

 

good idea, but I would caution about focusing on a failure. He didn't fail, if the goal is to become a good man.

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I did tell him I'd write a letter of recommendation for any place. The idea of writing it now and giving it to him is a good idea.

 

I was thinking about a story about someone that dealt with failure well. Lincoln was a complete failure until he became president. Or maybe something along the lines of "Not only is character what you do when nobody is looking, but nobody can give it to you or pin it on you. You have to earn it."

Failure to earn Eagle doesn't make his time in Scouting a failure. He sounds like a great young man who challenged himself, made new friends and went on some awesome trips. Top it off that he's obviously a young man of great character and Id be loath to frame this situation as a failure.

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I found a nice quote: "Reputation is what men and women think of us; character is what God and angels know of us." --Thomas Paine

 

Maybe I can put it on a plaque and present it to him. Not sure if putting an eagle with it would be a good idea or not.

 

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