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Eagle Scouts in Stroudsburg

Logan+Decker%2C+12%2C+stands+with+his+Scout+Master+and+three+members+on+the+Eagle+Board.
Logan Decker
Logan Decker, 12, stands with his Scout Master and three members on the Eagle Board.

The Boy Scouts of America is a national youth program that teaches morals, integrity, and leadership skills to help members navigate life. The organization has over 1,000,000 members between the ages of five and 21. 

The National Eagle Scouts Association is the next step in Boy Scouts that members work towards. Seniors, Steven Blannard, Andrew Hawks, James Haggerty, Nick Trunzo, Jordan Smalley, and Gunnar Gasper are all current Eagle Scouts within our school. 

The process of becoming an Eagle Scout is strenuous. The member must earn the Scout, Tenderfoot, 2nd Class, 1st Class, Star and Life Ranks while you earn the over 100 different merit badges offered. These badges are earned through the completion of activities involving camping, first aid, citizenship, and more. 

Once all 21 eagle-required badges have been received, the member must choose a service project that will benefit the community. Building benches, planting trees, or creating care packages for veterans are just a few examples of service projects that have been done.

“My eagle project was renovating one of my church’s Sunday school rooms,” says Logan Decker, 12. “I always knew that I wanted my project to be in my church; it means a lot to me.”

After finalizing the service project, members complete an Eagle application that must be submitted before the participant’s 18th birthday. The application includes an essay on your real-life or scouting experiences, five letters of recommendation, and your Eagle project workbook. 

“Eagle Scouts taught me leadership skills, dedication, hard work, and the value of helping others, which will play a key role in the individual I am for the rest of my life.”

— James Haggerty, 12.

The Eagle Board of Review, which consists of individuals from the scout’s council and district, reviews the application. They will ask questions about the member’s service projects and experiences with the Scouts. If the member is approved to be an Eagle Scout, they have a choice of whether or not they would like a ceremony to commemorate the accomplishment of earning Eagle Scout rank. 

The ceremony begins with presenting the American flag and the flag of the scout’s troop. The rest of the ceremony discusses the Eagle’s journey to their rank. At the mention of each step, one or more scouts will light a candle that symbolizes each rank. The final one is lit by the Eagle, as the candle represents them as individuals. 

“One special part of the ceremony is the speech that you give of your experience and hardships of becoming an Eagle Scout,” expresses Jacob Christman, 12. “There is also moment where you place a pin on your mother and father’s shirts, which is usually emotional.”

Decker and Christman are working on the final steps of becoming an Eagle Scout. Decker has his application currently in review with the board, and Christman will complete his project and application this summer.

The goal of Scouts is to pave the way for more engagement between the youth and their community. This will provide important lessons in leadership and the building of good character to the next generation.

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