baylor-study

New study shows 46 ways Eagle Scouts are different

Eagle Scouts are a different breed. You know it; I know it.

And today, we’ve got independent, scientific proof to back up our claim.

At last, the results are in from the 2010 Baylor University study, Eagle Scouts: Merit Beyond the Badge, conducted by the university’s Program for Pro-Social Behavior under a grant from the John Templeton Foundation.

The researchers found statistically significant differences between Eagle Scouts, former Scouts who didn’t make Eagle, and men who were never in Scouting. The differences were grouped into seven areas: Health and Recreation, Connection, Service and Leadership, Environmental Stewardship, Goal Orientation, Planning and Preparedness, and Character.

The timing’s perfect with the 100th anniversary of the Eagle Scout Award this year. But what were the findings? How did Eagle Scouts rate? Read on for my complete analysis.

Introduction

With the help of the Gallup Organization, Baylor University researchers contacted 81,409 potential respondents. From those who were contacted, 2,512 adult males agreed to be re-contacted for the survey. Of that group, 134 are Eagle Scouts.

Researchers asked the men 55 questions, touching on topics such as well-being, civic engagement, and character development.

They sought to answer these questions: Do youth participating in Scouting receive character-building advantages over youth that have not participated in Scouting? More specifically, do Eagle Scouts, because of the additional commitment and effort required to reach this rank, experience additional positive attributes that provide advantage and benefits to them over non-Scouts as well as other Scouts who never attain the rank of Eagle?

I have studied the complete report and want to share all 46 findings divided into seven thematic categories.

For each of the below, “Scouts” means men who were in Scouts as youth but didn’t reach Eagle, while “non-Scouts” means men who were never in Scouts as youth.

Ready? Let’s go.

Health and Recreation

Eagle Scouts exhibit an increased tendency to participate in a variety of health and recreational activities.

  1. Exercise every day for 30 minutes: Eagle Scouts are approximately 58 percent more likely than other Scouts but are not significantly different from non-Scouts.
  2. Regularly participate in boating (sailing, canoeing, kayaking): Eagle Scouts are 59 percent more likely than non-Scouts, although there is no significant difference between Eagle Scouts and other Scouts.
  3. Regularly participate in fishing: Eagle Scouts are 36 percent more likely than non-Scouts, while they are not significantly different from other Scouts.
  4. Participate in camping: Eagle Scouts are approximately 40 percent more likely than other Scouts and 95 percent more likely than non-Scouts to report camping.
  5. Satisfied with the amount of leisure and free time they have: Eagle Scouts are 51 percent more likely than Scouts while there is no statistically significant difference between Eagle Scouts and non-Scouts.
  6. Attend plays, concerts, or live theater: Eagle Scouts are 72 percent more likely than non-Scouts but are not significantly different from other Scouts.
  7. Play a musical instrument: Eagle Scouts are 38 percent more likely than non-Scouts. However, Eagle Scouts and other Scouts are not significantly different.
  8. Read books: Eagle Scouts are 39 percent more likely than non-Scouts but are not significantly different from other Scouts.
  9. Visit a local, state, or national park: Eagle Scouts are 42 percent more likely than non-Scouts, while they are not significantly different from other Scouts.
  10. Drink alcohol in the last seven days: Eagle Scouts are 25 percent less likely than other Scouts, although they are not significantly different from non-Scouts.

Connection

Eagle Scouts show a greater connectedness to siblings, neighbors, religious community, friends, co-workers, formal and informal groups, and a spiritual presence in nature.

  1. Report being very close with their siblings: Eagle Scouts are 38 percent more likely than non-Scouts. Eagle Scouts and other Scouts are not significantly different in their relationships with siblings.
  2. Report being extremely close with neighbors: Eagle Scouts are 97 percent more likely than Scouts. Eagle Scouts are not significantly different from non-Scouts.
  3. Report being extremely close with their religious community: Eagle Scouts are 66 percent more likely than Scouts. Eagle Scouts and non-Scouts are not significantly different.
  4. Have extremely close relationships with friends: Eagle Scouts are 60 percent more likely compared to Scouts. Further, Eagle Scouts are also 37 percent more likely to be extremely close with friends, compared to those men who never participated in Boy Scouts.
  5. Report being extremely close with their co-workers: Eagle Scouts are 57 percent more likely than Scouts but are not significantly different from non-Scouts.
  6. Have talked with or visited with neighbors at least once per month: Eagle Scouts are 36 percent more likely compared to Scouts. Moreover, Eagle Scouts are 46 percent more likely to have interacted with immediate neighbors at least once per month than men who never participated in Boy Scouts.
  7. Belong to at least four formal or informal groups: The likelihood of Eagle Scouts is 54 percent greater than Scouts. Additionally, Eagle Scouts are 87 percent more likely than non-Scouts to belong to at least four formal or informal groups.
  8. Agree they find a spiritual presence in nature: Eagle Scouts are roughly 44 percent more likely than Scouts. Also, Eagle Scouts are 50 percent more likely than non-Scouts to agree they find a spiritual presence in nature.

Service and Leadership

Duty to God, service to others, service to the community, and leadership are traits that are especially strong in Eagle Scouts.

  1. Have donated money to a religious institution within the last month: Eagle Scouts are 53 percent more likely than non-Scouts but are not significantly different from other Scouts in donating money to a religious institution.
  2. Have donated money to a non-religious institution or charity in the community within the last month: Eagle Scouts are 34 percent more likely than non-Scouts. However, Eagle Scouts and other Scouts are not significantly different.
  3. Volunteer time to a religious organization: Eagle Scouts are approximately 55 percent more likely, compared to other Scouts. Also, Eagle Scouts are 66 percent more likely than non-Scouts to volunteer time to a religious organization.
  4. Volunteer their time to a non-religious organization: Eagle Scouts are 58 percent more likely than other Scouts. In addition, Eagle Scouts are 62 percent more likely than non-Scouts to volunteer time to a non-religious organization.
  5. Work with their neighbors to address a problem or improve something: Compared to Scouts, Eagle Scouts are 68 percent more likely . Also, Eagle Scouts are 56 percent more likely than non-Scouts to work with others in their neighborhood to address a problem or improve something.
  6. Have voted in the last presidential election: Eagle Scouts are 73 percent more likely than non-Scouts, while they are not different from other Scouts.
  7. Have held a leadership position at their workplace: Eagle Scouts are roughly 39 percent more likely than other Scouts and approximately 55 percent more likely than non-Scouts.
  8. Have held leadership positions in the local community: Compared to Scouts, Eagle Scouts are about 53 percent more likely. Moreover, Eagle Scouts are around 76 percent more likely than non-Scouts to have held leadership positions in the local community.

Environmental Stewardship

Eagle Scouts are more likely to engage in behaviors that are designed to enhance and protect the environment.

  1. Be active in a group that works to protect the environment: Eagle Scouts are 89 percent more likely than other Scouts and 92 percent more likely than non-Scouts.
  2. Avoid using products that harm the environment: Compared to Scouts, Eagle Scouts are 38 percent more likely. Further, Eagle Scouts are 31 percent more likely than men who have never been Scouts to say they avoid using products that harm the environment.
  3. Report trying to use less water in their household: Eagle Scouts are 71 percent more likely than Scouts, while they are not significantly different from non-Scouts.

Goal Orientation

Eagle Scouts are more likely to be committed to learning, and to set and achieve personal, professional, spiritual, and financial goals.

  1. Feel it is extremely important to learn something every day: Eagle Scouts are 42 percent more likely than other Scouts. Further, Eagle Scouts are 40 percent more likely to believe it is extremely important to learn something every day, compared to those men who never participated in Boy Scouts.
  2. Report taking a course or class in the past year: Eagle Scouts are 30 percent more likely than Scouts. Eagle Scouts are 80 percent more likely than non-Scouts to report taking a course or class in the past year.
  3. Report achieving a personal goal in the last year: Eagle Scouts are 39 percent more likely than Scouts. Eagle Scouts are also 64 percent more likely than non-Scouts to report they achieved a personal goal in the last year.
  4. Report they achieved a professional goal in the last year: Eagle Scouts are roughly 29 percent more likely than non-Scouts.
  5. Indicate they achieved a spiritual goal in the last year: Eagle Scouts are about 81 percent more likely than other Scouts and 81 percent more likely than non-Scouts.
  6. Report achieving a financial goal in the last year: Eagle Scouts are 57 percent more likely than other Scouts. Also, Eagle Scouts are 49 percent more likely than non-Scouts to say a financial goal was achieved in the last year.

Planning and Preparedness

Eagle Scouts show higher levels of planning and preparedness than do Scouts who never attained the rank of Eagle Scout and men who were never Scouts.

  1. Have a disaster supply kit in their home: Eagle Scouts are 94 percent more likely than other Scouts. Also, Eagle Scouts are 124 percent more likely than non-Scouts to have a disaster supply kit kept in the home.
  2. Report a kit with emergency supplies is kept in their car: Eagle Scouts are 43 percent more likely than other Scouts. Moreover, Eagle Scouts are 81 percent more likely than non-Scouts to report a kit with emergency supplies is kept in their car.
  3. Have a specific meeting place for family to reunite in an emergency: Eagle Scouts are 94 percent more likely than other Scouts and 100 percent more likely than non-Scouts.
  4. Have CPR certification: Eagle Scouts are 50 percent more likely than other Scouts. Also, Eagle Scouts are 90 percent more likely than non-Scouts to have CPR certification.

Character

Eagle Scouts are more likely than other Scouts and men who were never Scouts to indicate they have built character traits related to work ethics, morality, tolerance, and respect for diversity.

  1. Agree they always try to exceed expectations: Eagle Scouts are 54 percent more likely than other Scouts. Additionally, Eagle Scouts are 52 percent more likely than non-Scouts to agree they always try to exceed.
  2. Agree they always do what is right: Eagle Scouts are approximately 47 percent more likely than non-Scouts, whereas Eagle and other Scouts are not significantly different.
  3. Agree they work hard to get ahead: Eagle Scouts are 88 percent more likely than other Scouts, although they are not significantly different from non-Scouts.
  4. Agree they always treat people of other religions with respect: Eagle Scouts are 109 percent more likely than other Scouts. Moreover, Eagle Scouts are 45 percent more likely than non-Scouts to agree they always treat people of other religions with respect.
  5. Strongly agree that most religions make a positive contribution to society: Eagle Scouts are 29 percent more likely than non-Scouts, but are not significantly different from other Scouts.
  6. Say respecting religious leaders outside of your religion is at least somewhat important: Eagle Scouts are 133 percent more likely than other Scouts and 109 percent more likely than non-Scouts.
  7. Say it is important to show respect to the American flag: Eagle Scouts are 89 percent more likely than other Scouts. However, Eagle Scouts and non-Scouts are not significantly different in their attitudes toward the American flag.

Summary

Analysis of the nationally representative survey reveals significant differences between Eagle Scouts and other Scouts as well as non-Scouts. Eagle Scouts consistently indicate their experience in Scouting contributed to positive and prosocial development as measured by responses to a wide range of issues and subjects, including the following:

  • Eagle Scouts exhibit an increased tendency to participate in a variety of health and recreational activities.
  • Eagle Scouts show a greater connectedness to siblings, neighbors, religious community, friends, co-workers, formal and informal groups, and a spiritual presence in nature.
  • Duty to God, service to others, service to the community, and leadership are traits that are especially strong in Eagle Scouts.
  • Eagle Scouts are more likely to engage in behaviors that are designed to enhance and protect the environment.
  • Eagle Scouts are more likely to be committed to setting and achieving personal, professional, spiritual, and financial goals.
  • Eagle Scouts show higher levels of planning and preparedness than do other Scouts and non-Scouts.
  • Eagle Scouts are more likely than other Scouts and non-Scouts to indicate they have built character traits related to work ethics, morality, tolerance, and respect for diversity.

In sum, when compared to Scouts and non-Scouts, Eagle Scouts exhibit significantly higher levels of health and recreation, connection, service and leadership, environmental stewardship, goal orientation, planning and preparedness, and character.

Read the complete study

There you have it. Click here to read the complete, 74-page study (PDF).

What do you think?

What finding (by number) surprised you the most? The least? How will you use this information in the future? Leave your thought below.

124 thoughts on “New study shows 46 ways Eagle Scouts are different

  1. Pingback: New study shows 46 ways Eagle Scouts are different « Bryan on Scouting « The Greg Jones Blog

  2. I’m an Eagle Scout, and i have a lot of friends who are and are not Eagle Scouts, and where in scouts and not in scouts. I think that it’s not so much the achievement, but the person having the will power and natural drive to try and get this achievement. It’s not easy and i have seen several very close friends come to the point where they have waited to long (their 18th birthday) and either barely got it or not at all. The ones who did not get it have shared with how they wish they had stuck with it. But they are no less than a man than i am, and i look up to and respect several the guys who did not achieve this award. So i don’t think you can simply judge someone based on their attachments or lack there of. But on how they take that defeat or success. Because it could go many different ways. Like the achievement could go to their head and get extremely arrogant. Or they could use this, for lack of a better word, failure to motivate them through life. Take it how you want, but the award doesn’t make the men, the men make the award.

    • I have a friend of mine who came close to getting his Eagle, but didn’t. He said later on that “failure” prompted him to stick it out and finish his Ph.D. I would say his time in Scouts affected him positively.

  3. Ok so through reading this article and then reading these comments I must say that I agree mostly with those who have said scouting has “lost its value” career wise and socially, as well as allowing troops to become a sort of machine in which pumps out eagle scouts for number/pride purposes without allowing growth of a boy into a young man through scouting (please DO NOT argue and brag to me how being 14 you have been challenged by your peers socially, mentally, and physically than a 17 year old, you haven’t and you will eventually understand). I myself am an Eagle Scout from troop 198 and I earned my rank of eagle at the age of 17. I am not saying that this is a more appropriate age to attain the rank of eagle scout, but I do feel that there are troops which are becoming “eagle mills” and pushing kids out for higher numbers and bragging rights if you will. too many times I have met kids who have been, not very honest in their ways of attaining merit badges by either cheating or dare I say, kissing a scout master/leaders ass for a free sign off/pass on a merit badge or requirement sign off. I feel that this lack of seriousness/commitment by leaders, scouts etc has transcended into scouting losing its social value in the United States with career opportunities, internships, and just jobs in general. So many times I have identified myself as an eagle scout to employers (former and present) to only hear, “oh so what is that again”?. Then to be told by others that, “well theynjust arent important enough to understand”. If a compqny CEO or owner of a store is telling you this, they are not lying to you. from your first days in scouting you have been promised how it will be a GOD SEND resume wise and setting you apart from the rest (let me tell you now, if you have no extra curricular actitivities and a sub-par to par GPA, DO NOT sleep on this). Scoutings inability to adjust to the future and technology is hurting its ability for employers to see what scouting passed what it is so commonly thought of as “rubbing 2 sticks together in the woods”.

    That being said, Scouting can once again become relevant and important again if and only if it commits to adjusting to technology of the future, taking time to make new merit badges and making new requirement for merit badges and class rank harder to achieve by pushing the character and perseverance of the scout himself than scoutmasters and leaders priding themselves in churning out 14 year old eagle scouts who wouldn’t last 36 hours in the woods by themselves with only the clothes on their back, water and matches. (yes they would of had to known how to do this had they properly completed their wilderness survival merit badge)

    • Whoever sold you the idea that Eagle Scout is a worthwhile endeavor to improve a resume should be keel hauled. We might as well have a personal grooming and resume writing MB if that was the case.

      BTW, if Eagle was the penultimate goal in Scouting, how did OA, Senior Scouts, Exploring, Venturing, Eagle Palms, the National Outdoor Achievement Medal, not to mention staffing summer camp or high adventure ever take off?

      There is much more to the game than Eagle. One of the main issues in Scouting today is that some units don’t understand that. In those units, Those are the units in which 17 is considered the target age for Eagle.

      I’d like to see a study of Eagles who earned their badge before 15. I bet you would see a higher incidence of Vigil Honors, Eagle Palms, jamboree and high adventure attendance and staffing, and Religious Awards. And, I bet your 14 old Eagle would be a better qualified outdoorsman at 17 than a Scout who was still struggling for Eagle at 17.

      • I’m vigil, been to two national and one world jamboree, have the Ad Altarei Dei award, and am currently and assistant director at a Summer Camp, with plans of staffing at Northern Tier next year. Most of the staff here got Eagle at 15 or above, and almost all of them have the same achievements that I do. I think you’ll find that the dedicated scouts that achieve Eagle later were too busy in other areas of Scouting to finish Eagle. Between NYLT, OA, Camp Staff, and helping to lead my troop I was one of thos “struggling 17 year olds” because I barely had time between the rest of scouting and school to do so,

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  5. Only one problem with this study, there is no proof in science. It is supported not proven. Although being an Eagle Scout I do see a lot of support for their claims.

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  7. I have read through all of this conversation. I must say that I am appalled at those who claim they are “Eagle Scouts” and still belittle another youth organization. I spent a large majority of my adult life in the military and part of a very elite special forces unit. I never put down another service or service member who didn’t attain what I had done.
    I am so tired of scouters putting down others. The worst is the arrogance of leaders who earn “Wood Badge”. I see them at scouting conferences patting themselves on the back and spending most of their time in the staff “donut room”. While the non-woodbadgetts are trying to teach leaders and scouts classes. I am so tired of them telling me that I will become a better leader by attending “Woodbadge”. I have lead young men into combat and trained them to lead others for years in the military. I quote one of those who is a Woodbadge leader “it will change your life”. Living 8 weeks behind the lines during war changed my life, so a week of someone telling me to how to lead won’t change me.
    I am tired of the BSA telling everyone that they have invented this new program of some kind. 99% of the time I can find a program that already exists that is just the same. BSA just puts their own special program name on it and tries to sale it as their creation. For example E.D.G.E is nothing but text book vocational or workforce step by step instruction. The patrol method is nothing but military organizational and operational guidelines for boys.
    I watch boys at 15 and 16 drop out of troops. Usually it is because of sports. Let’s face it, when you score a touchdown on Friday night it will be in the paper on Saturday morning in large print. If it was the touchdown or homerun that won the big game, it might be on the front page. If you make Eagle after 7 years of “Doing Your Best to Be Prepared” you might get a small 1 paragraph input on the last page of the paper. You see athletics on TV every day even high school sports now days. I don’t ever think I have seen a 2 hour program on scouting on Mondy Night Scouting. The only big media display for Boy Scouting is when there is a major negative event happens in the program. Ever thought about doing a little mass media advertising for Scouting?

    Scouting is becoming all about Eagle. If you don’t make Eagle then any time you put in before is worthless in todays scouting. This study basically says you are better off never getting into scouting if you don’t make “Eagle Scout”. Maybe that should be the point of this study. Those who quit the program might have discovered that it was detrimental unless you were willing to commit every waking moment of your life to the program.
    I recently recieved a email from the council. They were concerned that Boy Scouting was giving the appearance that it was only for elitest white people. It may not do it on purpose, but the way it is currenlty running sure makes it out to be that way. For an example. We are no longer going to do mailings due to cost of postage. I guess that the person at the council who gets paid a nice salary and has a computer on their desk doesn’t realize that in low income rural america not everyone has a computer at home. They would argue that someone in the unit will have a computer and can get them the information. MMMMMMMMM aren’t the people at the council suppose to get information out to the people. My community alone has an elementary school where 46% percent of the students are on free or reduced lunch programs. Many of these kids only get a meal at school through that those programs. To reduce cost to the council, we will now make 2 extremely large districs so that our executives don’t have to travel as much and that will reduce costs. Now, instead all of the volunteers will almost all travel to meetings in different places. This will reduce cost to the council and put it on the volunteers and boys. When we loose a boy. I can imagine this statement by his parents (usually a single mother) “We can’t afford for you to be a scout anymore. I am sorry.” When I recharted my units this year, I refused to turn in a Journey to Excellence Document.
    Journey to Excellence is nothing but another way for big city rich troops to show off to those rural poor troops.
    For men who have reached what their program considers to be the pinacle of achievement to put down another youth program, is in my eyes, unforgivable. It shows the arrogance that has come to be a scar on the face of Scouting. If this is what Boy Scouting is teaching “the elite” then they should be ashamed. I am ashamed to be part of it.
    I have come to believe that Boy Scouting has become nothing, but a for profit program. I know it shows on the books not to be, but every program the boys, their leaders and parents attend have a profit for the council and/or national program. I am a day camp director and my wife is the operations director. Tomorrow we will attend the monthly planning meeting. We are to provide complete examples of each of the stations we will be having at our camp. So, basically we will have paid for any special equipment needed for out day camp out of our pockets. No, we did not get a dime yet for our camp. We get the use of a County Fair Grounds to hold our camp. We do all the planning and travel each month 40 miles each way at our expense. We get the archery and BB guns from the council, who hasn’t purchased a new item in years. They are donated by a sporting goods company. We get a grand total of $500.00 for expenses. So in cash the council has provided at most $700.00 to the camp. They charge boys, leaders and leaders on average $45.00 to attend the two day camp. We have on average 150 paying scouters attend. Simple math 45X150= $6,750.00. Council investment maybe $1000.00. Nice profit for the council. I make $0.00 and probably spend $600.00 out of my pocket. Yet, I am not as good a leader as someone with “Wood Badge” or as good as the “Eagle Scout” executive who is working their first job out of school.
    Are you getting the point for the reason boys are not joining or dropping out of scouting? Why you are loosing or can’t recruit leaders and adults. I will make it easy for you, seeing as you are looking through Boy Scout goggles. “If Boy Scouts Elite are what the program stands for, then I want something else for me and my son. Quit saying we are all inclusive and demonstrating we are all inclusive as long as you can afford it. If you are a paid executive and are not in it for all boys, then take your super self and go work for a corporate giant and get a big check. Leaders, quite bragging about how many years you have been a scout leader and pumping your chest out to show how many knots you have on your chest. Quit thinking people find it funny when you and other woodbadgers put down each others little animal or private group you are part of.
    GET BACK TO GIVING BOYS, NO MATTER WHO THEY ARE, LIFE LONG LEARNING AND FUN WHILE GETTING THOSE LESSONS. QUIT DOWNGRADING OTHER PROGRAMS THAT ARE DOING GOOD FOR THE YOUTH OF OUR COUNTRY.

    In other words, look in the mirror and be honest with yourself.

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  16. If only the Eagle Scouts of the old generation wanted to help Gay kids achieve and excell past their peers then we could really say something about Eagle Scouts. Until that is changed what it means to be a Scout or to achieve the highest rank in scouting remains tainted by the choices of their leadership. I’m sorry to say but I am not nearly as proud to call myself an Eagle Scout as I once was.

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  18. If attaining Eagle rank makes boys significantly more likely to be the kind of model citizen that BSA strives for, then why would BSA put restrictions on any boy’s ability to participate in this program? I’d want all boys, regardless of sexual orientation or religious beliefs (on non beliefs) to benefit from the opportunity to become an Eagle Scout. Who knows how it may change them for the better?

  19. I’m 18, and received my Eagle at the age of 16, and I have to agree completely with everything in this study. We as Eagles set ourselves apart in every way. It starts out as something fun…..well it’s always enjoyable…but through the journey to Eagle you learn more about yourself and mature thrift the process. It is a very high honor, with most presidents, astronauts, and famous or important leaders being Eagle Scouts, just proves we have what it takes. I will place my boys in scouting for sure and bring then up through Eagle as well. Once an Eagle, always an Eagle! No matter what your age!

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  22. I believe the God given character of the boy who achieves the rank of Eagle is simply of a character that has a desire to achieve a worthy goal and be the best at what he chooses to do in his life.. The BSA is a place that attracts boys to this kind of challenge… Once their part of the BSA they see the opportunity, become committed to the opportunity and then strive to succeed in becoming the best scout they can become… through a perseverance and focused commitment to work hard at a goal they’ve chosen to attain they choose freely to not let failure enter into the equation… it’s truly a character trait and the BSA allows them the opportunity to distinguish that character ultimately leading to it’s recognition in a boy attaining the rank of Eagle.. Eagle Scouts are good characters; and I mean that in a good way…

  23. You know,we went to the moon,saved billions of lives with medicine,etc,but we don’t have a simple test for puberty.Would help a lot to know precisely when to set extra time aside,and walk the kids through the basics, inplants,or what ever is best,rather than deal with consequences of failure to protect,least educated need more attention

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  27. I was one of those that barely earned Eagle before the age limit. I had teenage-itis and couldn’t swim and used it as an excuse not to go hard in scouting. Finally I got over my fear of the water and kicked it into high gear but it was almost too little too late.

    I do think that program does help in the leadershiop/maturity POV because I was always lauded as having a cool head, remaining positive, being more mature for my age because the BSA teaches alot about maturity but also alot about respect. Most of it should be common sense, but sometimes other programs focus on the leadership aspect and nothing else.

    To be honest though, I didn’t really care that I got Eagle. Scouting to me was all about the experience of doing things you normally wouldn’t do with your bros. I stayed in only because the “class” behind me (I was a senior in HS, they were juniors) stayed in and were going for their Eagle. Once I finally got the swimming requirement for (second class?) and that merit badge I saw that I had just enough time to get Eagle and it would correspond with those guys getting their Eagle. It worked out and we had a group ceremony but it wasn’t that big a deal to me. I was just happy we finished the journey together.

    I would find leading teams, squads, or platoons in the US Army was easier with BSA background. You pretty much lead the same people in both institutions, and have a somewhat basic understanding of military structuring before you even start. Made the transition feel somewhat natural.

    And it didn’t hurt that some of the crappiest moments in BCT and AIT involving weather, sleep dep, and food issues had already been experienced beforehand in the Scouts.

    No real comparison to overseas deployment though.

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