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Cburkhardt

Good Ideas for Girls Earning Eagle in 2-3 Years

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Three girls in our 27-member Troop will need to earn Eagle in 2 or 3 years.  These young women came our way because they heard about our Troop and have different but compelling reasons to want to become Eagle Scouts within a compressed time frame.  Let's start commenting about how this can be done in a quality way.  First, the three circumstances:

Girl A is the daughter of a Scoutmaster of another established all-boy Troop.  She has been a "tag-along" for many years.  She has been on camp staff for 4 years.  She turns 18 in a month and wants to earn her Eagle in 2 years.  She joined our all-girl Troop last month and will be going to college away from our area.  She will get a lot of merit badges this and next summer on staff and will probably affiliate with another all-girl Troop where she goes to College to do her leadership.

Girl B just contacted us.  She is 17 and moving into our area to attend college.  She has been a Venturer for 3 years and has attended summer camp for 3 years with her Crew.  She wants to join our Troop, and can probably be one of our older girl leaders this fall.

Girl C is about to turn 16, is from our area, and knows a lot of the younger girls who have joined.  She has wisdom beyond her years.  She has no previous Scouting background and will be "starting from scratch".

All of these girls perfectly exemplify great opportunities for us to extend BSA advantages to deserving young people.  All of them have said they want to do the full program the right way.  All of them will be able to progress rapidly through the early ranks because those ranks are designed for young scouts.

Please consider taking one or more of these examples and suggest helpful approaches that come to mind.  We are not going to re-argue whether girls should be in Scouts BSA or whether the temporary 2-year Eagle extension is appropriate.     

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Posted (edited)

I second Fred that for you and the Troop focus on having a good program and advancement will flow for anyone who wants it.

If I was counseling these scouts, and this advice is for scouts who are 16,17, 18 and would not be the advice I would give to younger scouts, I would tell them the requirements for Eagle can be broken down to three categories: outdoor skills, leadership and service to your fellow scouts, merit badges.  A good deal of this is going to be about their time management.  They need to set themselves some interim goal points ---  1stClass AND five or six mbs in four months.

I would emphasize to them to read through all the requirements and all the mb requirements, both right away and several more times in the future, the same way you do with a class syllabus.  That way you know when an activity is part of competing and requirement and you can be sure to add the extra touches necessary in real time to make sure your getting the whole requirement complete on your first possibility.

This is a doable time table for anyone who is this age and motivated.  if you look at some of the things that challenge or trip up younger scouts, like Enviro Sci or Communications, those are no more than a good night's or at least a good weekend's homework for a high school senior or college student..

best of luck to them.

 

Edited by T2Eagle

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First, nobody *needs* to earn Eagle, but it's great that you have three great teens who want to within the time allotted to them.

you don't want to take anyone for granted, but I suspect the 16 year old starting fresh will need most of your attention. She simply doesn't know scouts and scouters well, so you're going to need to make sure she gets connected to your better merit badge counselors, that she understands the first class rank requirements, and respects whatever younger scout may be her PL or SPL. We have similar issues with boys who join in their late teens. Sometimes they have a buddy who will show them the ropes, but they are often much more in need of adult guidance.

Girls A and B are treading new territory. They will need to work a balance between troop and college. For them, you will need to constantly ask if they are having fun. A younger mom with a big heart might be a good mentor. On the flip side, their college classmates might have some cool things to offer your troop. Keep challenging them to find was to build synergy between their schools and scouting.

I think this is a great opportunity for these girls, but your number 1 priority is building 1st class scouts. It sounds like you have a good idea of who is well on their way. Like any scout, you need to listen and watch and at SMCs give them honest appraisals.

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Dear Friends:  

These are splendid suggestions, and I certainly agree and recommend them to all readers.  

We anticipate that the Scoutmaster daughter/4-year camp staffer and the 3-year Venturer are good examples of tag-along girls who have probably fully-absorbed the Scouting spirit and have already acquired much of the required First Class skills (which they will have to of course demonstrate mastery of).  Both already have their merit badge plans on paper.  I am really pleased we will have them to inspire our 11-13 year olds.  Their significant growth will probably be on the leadership side of things.

Our challenge is the “unscouted” girl who turns 16 this summer and perhaps others that might materialize in the fall.  As I have shared elsewhere on this Forum, girls are now seeking us out based on word of mouth, including older ones.  What has been pleasing is that there have been no parents or girls showing simply to “gun for Eagle”.  We will be working very closely with her and she will be at summer camp with us.

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Please post 2-year Eagle plans for boys and girls on a short track.  We are seeking schedules and hints on things that need to be “worked from the start”, such as particular required merit badges to present timing pitfalls.

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Do you have leadership plans for the scouts who will be in college during the later half of the process? I'm not sure how that will work during the extended time rule.

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1 minute ago, Eagledad said:

This discussion is exactly what many experienced scouters on this forum  predicted would happen. The non scouting public identifies Scouting only by the Eagle. And by golly the girls parents are going to get it for them.

Greenbar who?

Barry

This is the concern I posted on another discussion thread and I can't tell you how many times I was slapped on the nose with the newspaper.  I do hope all the talk of "Eagle, Eagle, Eagle" is just the initial excitement of the girl program but I fear it is not.  Most of these girls have not earned Scout or Tenderfoot yet but we are talking about Eagle. 

I was at our Troop Shed recently which is at our CO location on a Friday evening.  They have a large property with a Pavilion and field where they let Scouts camp for free.  Our lone girl Troop in the District was going to camp there that weekend.  I had to take my son to the lower field because he is putting in a stage at the fire pit for the Scouts to do skits and things and he needed to take some measurements.  This is his Eagle Project.  As we drove through the area, we noticed two of the Scoutmasters and one mom already there and they had set up the camp kitchens, and tents and already had a stack of chopped wood for the fire.   Not a single Scout in sight.  That would have been a great opportunity to let the girls do it and check off a bunch of requirements at one event.

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3 hours ago, Ranman328 said:

Not to be a downer here but one thing I don't hear anyone saying is that not everyone earns the Eagle Rank.

As I am familiarizing myself with the rank advancment materials, one thing that has impressed me is that every rank along the way to Eagle is worthwhile for its own sake.   So if an idealistic new scout says "I want to earn eagle" but ends up not doing so,  then she still benefitted from as much of the journey as she did.   Work on improving your physical fitness? Great.  Learn to swim? Super.  Try taking on a leadership role in the troop?  Valuable experience.    It seems to me that we should help each scout grow starting from where they are at -- but certainly not expect that all will have the desire, or the ability, to reach Eagle.

Big difference from GSUSA where the "Journeys" are a prerequisite to working on the Bronze/Silver/Gold Award, and where the attitude towards the "Journeys" is sometimes hold-your-nose-and-get-it-over-with-it -- i.e. some do not see much value in those Journeys for their own sakes.

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11 hours ago, Cburkhardt said:

Please post 2-year Eagle plans for boys and girls on a short track.  We are seeking schedules and hints on things that need to be “worked from the start”, such as particular required merit badges to present timing pitfalls.

So...not to do a disservice to the journey, and it is each Scout's journey, basic project management, if you have hard stop to achieve something you will need a plan.

We had an older teen (15 and 8 months) join the troop a couple of years ago.  Mainly he wanted to attend high adventure with friends in the troop.  As he did attend one high adventure and then camp (as a "new" scout) we talked about what he wanted to do in Scouting.  Long story short, we backdated a plan for when HE would need to attain various ranks.  HE would have to do this, HE would need to attend our second summer camps to get enough optional merit badges, HE would need to serve in the leadership, HE would need to propose, plan, and perform a project.

Fast forward, he is 18 in maybe 90 days.  He has earned his 21 merit badges, served as JASM in the troop and at summer camps, went to high adventure, went to outings, and just got his project approved.  Should wrap up before 18th birthday.

It can be done if THEY want to earn it, see the value, and you can support the journey.

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Thanks to the over 700 who have visited this posting in the last 24 hours.  Understanding how to best provide advice on this is a concern shared by many.  We are going to deliver on this.  And, Happy Easter to everyone of you, regardless of your faith.

There is a clear need to provide guidance on basic scheduling and requirements/leadership sequencing to meritorious older young men and woman who have been presented the opportunity to advance through Scouting’s ranks during this exceptional period.  Thanks to those who had useful prioritization thoughts to offer.  To those who seemingly think that these young people should figure out how to do this entirely on their own, let me tell you that we are going to provide Scoutmasterly advice so that those who want to have as much of the scouting experience they can — and maybe even earn Eagle — can do so in an organized manner and not be crushed by failing to catch one of our elaborate rules.

I have been considering it and believe the critical timing issue is to immediately start earning the merit badges this and next summer.  I believe at least three combined weeks at a first-rate council camp with a broad variety of offerings is the way to go.  Our 2 girls who have  gobs of experience in BSA as tag-alongside, Venturers and camp staff will each spend 2 weeks this summer at camp and probably one more next year.  The “unscouted” girl will have a more gradual start, because we need to see her learn and master the basics.  She will work merit badges as well and spend a week with us during our Troop visit to our council camp.  Next year she will likely need to do 2 weeks at camp.  For all 3 girls we will spend a lot of time to assure they are learning and exercising leadership and serve the requisite time in officerships.  

That some of these girls are going to college during this period presents a logistical challenge.  As I noted earlier, we have one girl leaving our area.  She will dual register with a troop in her college town to continue her work while away — especially her leadership roles.  And, we are receiving a long-time venturer in our city who will attend college here.  She and her parents are well along the way on all of this.  Because our Troop meets on Saturday mornings it will work well for her school schedule.  Her mother is also an experienced commissioner.  Do not hesitate to have your professionals assist to find a destination college town troop for your young person.  The third girl will live here and do her Scouting work with us as a junior and senior in high school.

Again, if any of you and your scouts have reduced to writing a sample schedule for rank, merit badge and leadership service, please post it for others to see.  I am aware that some good templates have been developed.  I will share our details as we develop them.

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