Re: NESA a resource to Scouting?
Amick Robert (amick@SPOT.COLORADO.EDU)
Wed, 18 Dec 1996 12:38:33 -0700
The precursor to NESA, the Knights of Dunamis which was founded in 1925
and then briefly adopted as the official Eagle Scout program by BSA up
until 1971, when the name was changed to NESA, was heavily oriented toward
involving youth members in service to Scouting.
They had extensive service programs in the area of Troop
Leadership Development, one of which involved a "mentoring" program for
new or weak troops where the Eagles would train the younger inexperienced
Scouts in their troop jobs, and help them run the troop until the newer
leaders were more comfortable. This worked very well, and I have often
thought, where is the KD when we need it. KD's also conducted very
impressive Eagle Scout Courts of Honor for Troops which were very
meaningful to the new Eagles. Having your fellow Eagle Scouts present the
ceremony for you meant a lot to many new Eagles when it was being done.
As NESA evolved after 1971, the youth aspect of chapters in local councils
gradually faded, and very few councils have any active NESA youth
organization. Although the National Office maintains the files of NESA
members, and makes them available to local councils as resources, there is
in practice, little effort to stimulate local active service by Eagle
Scouts as a part of their NESA membership.
At one time, some NESA chapters also organized Explorer Posts and
continued to provide service to units by running Junior Leader Training
Programs, assisting with district and council events such as camporees,
and other leadership oriented service programs.
In the late 60's a chart of organizational relationships was prepared
which showed the relative roles of the Order of the Arrow for camping
promotion, Knights of Dunamis/NESA for leadership development and training
of youth leaders in units, and
Alpha Phi Omega for College Student involvement and support.
More recently an agreement has been forged between NESA and Alpha Phi
Omega to encourage Eagle Scouts attending college/university to join APO
as a means of contributing support to Scouting and youth. This appears to
have been only moderately effective, and could use more promotion if it is
to truly reach the myriad of Eagles who attend college and could be
members of APO, but are not aware of it or recruited into it.
I still have much of the KD literature on the Troop Leader Development
Program, the Eagle Courts of Honor Ceremonies, Junior Leader training
programs which are very contemporary with current curriculum and course
syllabus for similar programs, and would be willing to share those with
It is unfortunate that there is not still an effective organization to
unite youth and adult Eagle Scouts in service to local councils and units
as there used to be. Perhaps it is time to revitalize that effort.
Bob Amick, Explorer Advisor, High Adventure Explorer Post 72, Boulder, CO
and Advisory Board Chair, Gamma Theta Chapter, Alpha Phi Omega, University
of Colorado at Boulder
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City