Jim Sleezer (JHS8@OSUVM1.BITNET)
Tue, 13 Apr 1993 14:18:12 CST
On Tue, 13 Apr 1993 07:27:07 GMT BRUCE C JOHNSON said:
in reply to Nathan Brindle's post:
> I quite agree with you. I suspect that the problem with
> promoting A Phi O, as well as Exploring, is that executives tend
> to spend most of their time working with what they see as their
> "core" programs, i.e. Cubs and Scouts. It could be that this
> stems from only spending 30 minutes on Exploring at NEI (and God
> knows how little time on A Phi O), or maybe there's something a
> little more obvious than that. I'm not sure. In any case, the
> loser seems to be the older young man and young woman who
> typically doesn't get the attention that he or she should. That
> doesn't mean we should sit idly by and do nothing. I'm glad to
> see that you aren't. If we all try harder for this age group, we
> WILL see results. Keep up the good work.
Perhaps I read the above wrong, but it seems to imply that APhiO is a
program of BSA. That is not true and professional staff have no responsibility
for supporting it. However, it could be to their benefit to maintain some
level of contact, just like they tend to do with other service and civic
While I believe in maintaining a relationship with the local APhiO
chapter(s), I think it is important that members of Alpha Phi Omega not be
relied on for unit leadership. Nor should college students in general be
a source of unit leadership. Too often, these people build a unit based on
their participation in a leadership role. When they leave for the summer, the
unit flounders and when they graduate the unit dies.
My suggestion is that APhiO be encouraged to assist with district and
council events, perhaps even taking leadership in one or two but that they
not get too involved in unit operation.
One of the things my APhiO chapter did was conduct den chief training--
it was always a great event (overnight) and attendance was very high--usually
two to three times as many Scouts as could possibly be placed in dens. But,
it was a great, fun event that some Scouts attended for several years in a row
--even though they didn't intend to work with a den.
Another thing we did was prepare a list of our special skills and
interests. This list was shared with units who invited us to come and share
our interest or demonstrate skills. We monitored this to assure that no troop
was using the chapter to do all of their programming. Essentially, if they
called on us more than once a month (four times a semester) we suggested that
they should take more responsibility for program.
We also were available to do junior leader training with scouts from one
troop at a time. We helped with some of the district and council junior leader
training, but avoided taking responsibility for running it.
BTW, the DE had a citizens band radio and when he came to town, he called
in to let us know that he was going to be at the local restaurant on the town
square if we wanted to drop by. He kept us posted on what was happening in the
district and council and let us know where help was needed. We joined with
other APhiO chapters in the council to do a big cleanup at the summer camp and
a couple of chapter members were on the summer staff. Most of us, however,
went elsewhere to serve on camp staff--the last year I was there, eight
councils came to the campus to interview potential staff members. We ended up
with people in 25 different camps that year. I don't know what happened after
that since I departed for the real world!!
Having said all that, I believe that it is APhiO's job to recruit members.
If a council lets its older boys know about the possibilities, that is great
but it is not their responsibility.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City