Editor’s Note: Have a Scout who’s losing speed as he nears the rank of Eagle Scout? Keep his ride going by sharing with him this guest blog post from Rob Greenfield, an Eagle Scout from Ashland, Wisc., who recently completed a solo bike ride across America.
I think you’ll find in Rob’s writing some great lessons in perseverance and the Scouting spirit. He speaks directly to boys on the path to Eagle, telling them to “keep [their] eye on the prize,” even when others around them might think Scouting isn’t “cool.” Rob did, and look at him now.
Rob also shares thoughts on protecting our earth and how he completed a cross-country bike ride with minimal impact to the planet; he created just two pounds of trash over 104 days! Rob’s writing couldn’t be more timely given the BSA’s new Sustainability merit badge.
I hope you enjoy.
Across America on a Bamboo Bike
The post’s author, Rob Greenfield.
More than 4,700 miles of bike riding through deserts, over mountains, across the Great Plains and in urban America gives you a lot of time to think. It gives you a lot of time to appreciate what you have in life. It gives you a lot of time to be thankful for where you are today. It gave me a lot of time to gain a deeper appreciation for my seven years as a Boy Scout.
This summer I cycled 5,000 miles over 104 days on a bamboo bicycle starting in San Francisco and ending in Waitsfield, Vt. The purpose of the journey was to inspire Americans to start living a more earth-friendly lifestyle for themselves, their community, and the earth. To lead by example, I followed a set of rigorous ground rules: only using electricity I created via my own solar panels, using water harvested from natural sources or that was going to waste, eating local organic unpackaged food or food that was going to waste, creating near zero trash and shopping only at businesses that are socially and environmentally responsible. On top of that if I swore I had to do 10 pushups and donate $10 to charity.
My years in Scouting instilled in me a love for nature and a desire to protect it. Continue reading
You the Life Scouts and Eagle Scouts of the Boy Scouts of America, in Order to form a more perfect understanding of the U.S. Constitution, establish awareness of our nation’s Founding Documents, and secure some Free Money, do indeed need to enter this Bill of Rights Institute Eagle Scout Competition
OK, so maybe my version of the Preamble doesn’t match the original, but it still contains an important message.
That message: The Bill of Rights Institute, a nonprofit educational organization “whose mission is to educate young people on the ideas of the Constitution and the rights it protects,” has launched its second annual Eagle Scout Competition.
One grand prize winner will score $1,000 for himself and $500 for his unit. Two runners-up get $500 for themselves and $250 for their units.
To enter, Life Scouts and Eagle Scouts between the ages of 14 and 19 must write two short essays based on the topics listed below. The deadline — Feb. 10, 2014 — will be here before you can say “more perfect Union,” so send this to your Life Scouts and Eagle Scouts right away.
Complete rules and info after the jump. Continue reading
Update, Sept. 7: Just to clarify, though the fleur-de-lis was in use before Scouting began, the Navy has said this use of the fleur-de-lis is indeed a reference to Ford’s Scouting career.
As the only Eagle Scout ever to become U.S. president (so far), Gerald Ford stands among the most successful men ever to emerge from the Boy Scouts of America.
That legacy continues with the USS Gerald R. Ford, a $13.5 billion, 1,106-foot aircraft carrier set to join the U.S. Navy’s fleet in 2016.
Last month, the ship’s crew released the Gerald Ford‘s official crest.
It features 38 stars, representing Ford’s tenure as our 38th president. The colors include blue and maize, honoring his undergraduate alma mater, the University of Michigan. But it’s the fluer-de-lis at the top of the compass that really caught my eye.
The fleur-de-lis, of course, shows off Ford’s achievements as a Boy Scout, and its northern position on the compass says a lot about how much Ford’s life direction was positively shaped by his time in Scouting.
Here’s the crest: Continue reading
Ever heard of a Scout “Eagling out”? That’s the unofficial term for a young man earning Boy Scouting’s highest rank and leaving the program shortly after.
Well, that idea’s lost on newly minted Eagle Scout Andrew Arnold from Monterey, Calif. Not only is he planning to stay involved in Scouting after his Eagle Scout Court of Honor last month, he also sees the Eagle journey as a process that will “flow on indefinitely past Eagle and even past the age of 18.”
Andrew, a member of Troop 43 in Silicon Valley Monterey Bay Council, shared his view of the journey to the Scouting’s summit — and beyond — in a speech at his Eagle Scout Court of Honor in August. Based on this speech, you’ll see Andrew has wisdom beyond his years and has a bright future in writing, public speaking, law, politics or pretty much anywhere he wants to go.
A Scouter in his troop, Mike Djubasak, said I could share Andrew’s speech with you. Take a look: Continue reading
Stellar accomplishments, like earning the Eagle Scout award, reap stellar rewards. Eagle Scout Tristan Bullard can attest to this, as he watched astronomers take one step closer to completing the Giant Magellan Telescope at Saturday’s rare mirror-firing event.
During a Mirror Lab tour, visitors watch as the massive mirror is “fired” in a spun-cast furnace (shown at back of photo). Courtesy of NESA.
Alongside internationally known scientists and astronomers, Tristan — who was named Eagle Scout Astronomer earlier this year— looked on as liquid glass spun in a gigantic furnace reaching 1170 degrees Celsius at the University of Arizona’s Steward Observatory Mirror Lab in Tucson.
The new, 20-ton mirror is the third of seven mirrors needed to construct the Giant Magellan Telescope, a project that will allow astronomers to look into the cosmos with clarity and precision 10 times sharper than the Hubble Space Telescope. The GMT mirror-firing is considered to be the most challenging optics ever undertaken with each mirror measuring 27 feet in diameter.
Tristan says the mirror firing was a once-in-a-lifetime event. And one that he experienced thanks to the National Eagle Scout Association.
Read more about how Tristan got the chance to attend the mirror-firing after the jump. Continue reading
Somewhere in the Gulf of Mexico right now, an Eagle Scout is making history.
CB Wren, the 16-year-old selected as this year’s Eagle Scout argonaut, is aboard the exploration vessel Nautilus as part of an international team exploring geology, biology, archaeology and chemistry. The Nautilus is owned by Dr. Bob Ballard, the oceanographer who discovered the Titanic.
You can follow CB and his fellow explorers right now at nautiluslive.org. Or do one better and tune in at 5 p.m. EDT tomorrow (Friday, Aug. 16) for the live webcast where students and explorers aboard the ship will answer questions about their week of living and working in the Gulf.
Seems like an ideal way to inspire the soon-to-be Eagles in your life — or anyone you know who has a passion for exploration.
CB and the other argonauts are spending the week exploring the underwater environment following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, mapping natural hydrocarbons and studying a shipwreck.
What is the JASON National Argonaut program? Continue reading
While you were probably surprised to learn about the National Security Agency’s secret spying programs back in May, you might not be shocked to find out one of the top officials at the NSA is an Eagle Scout.
After all, we already know Eagle Scouts make great politicians, athletes, entertainers, businessmen, Scoutmasters, dads and well-rounded guys. Why wouldn’t an Eagle Scout sit atop the NSA as its Deputy Director, the top civilian at the agency who essentially serves as chief operating officer?
In a recent Bloomberg Businessweek blog post, titled “Hidden Hand: Chris Inglis, the Eagle Scout at the NSA,” writer Michael Riley introduced us to Inglis, who has worked for 27 years at the NSA. The blog post is brief, but we did learn that Inglis acts like an Eagle Scout at the office. Just read this compliment from the article:
Updated, Oct. 2: The opening of the 2014 scholarship window has been delayed to Monday, Oct. 7.
Being an Eagle Scout pays off, in some cases literally.
The National Eagle Scout Association offers scholarships for Eagles entering college, a big help for families as tuitions continue to rise at universities nationwide.
Graduating high schoolers can apply for 2014 NESA scholarships beginning Oct. 1, 2013, with a submission deadline of Dec. 31, 2013.
But today, let’s look at some statistics that illustrate how the impact of those scholarships has grown over time. Continue reading
Update, Aug. 5: Bidding on the main auction finished at $910! The winning bidder was anonymous per eBay policy, but if he or she wants to contact me to be recognized, please fell free.
Mike Rowe has some C.R.A.P. to sell you.
That’s “Collectibles Rare And Precious,” of course.
The Eagle Scout, Dirty Jobs star, skilled labor advocate and memorable speaker at this month’s jamboree is auctioning and selling some signed jamboree gear to benefit his foundation.
Rather than trying to explain it myself, I better let Mike handle that. Just watch this video in which he compliments the Scouting organization and shows what he’s putting up for bid or purchase: Continue reading
Eagle Scout Mike Rowe once got the worst advice he’s ever heard.
A teacher, Mr. Dunbar, told him to “work smart, not hard.” Ever heard that advice from a boss or teacher?
At Saturday afternoon’s stadium show, Rowe rewrote Mr. Dunbar’s bad advice, telling the crowd of tens of thousands of Scouts, Scouters and Venturers that the key is to “work smart and hard.” And he needs the help of all of us in the Boy Scouts of America.
If anyone can rouse a crowd through hilarious stories and inspiring words, it’s Mike Rowe. He did it at the 2010 National Scout Jamboree and at the BSA’s 2012 National Annual Meeting. The third time was his best yet.
The former Dirty Jobs host has embarked on a mission to increase the profile of skilled labor, where 3 million jobs are waiting “for people willing to get their hands dirty.”
The problem: Too many people consider skilled labor to be a “vocational consolation prize,” Rowe said. ”I’m not talking about you guys,” he said. “The Boy Scouts get it. The Boy Scouts have always got it.”
Watch the full video of Rowe’s speech after the jump. Continue reading