scouts-l Mail Archive for May of 2000: Re: Lack of Scouting influence ??
Alan Houser (troop24@EMF.NET
Mon May 01 2000 - 19:37:24 CDT
Tom Hess <twhmmh@COMMONGROUP.NET> wrote:
>Just finished a committee project for my oldest daughter's
>HS 'booster club'. The committee had a total of four
>thousand dollars to award to deserving students in $500
>The criteria judged included academic performance (cum.
>GPA, SAT or ACT score), sports participation, other school
>extra-curricular activities, jobs held, letters of recommendations,
>and any other factors that the applicants wanted to add to
>Had a total of 19 applicants out of 300-plus Seniors. That
>low response was in itself disappointing. As was the 16
>female to 3 male applicants.
>But what was most disappointing to me was that not one
>applicant mentioned any experience or exposure to any
>Scouting activity, Boy or Girl.
>Of course, no one else on the committee thought that odd.
>But the 'penetration' rate is obviously low in our particular
>school population. Or the 'smart' kids don't do Scouts ??
Yes, the penetration rate in high school is low, because
many Scouts have dropped out by the time they are Seniors.
>From what I've heard, this is even more true for Girl Scouts
than for Boy Scouts.
And if they dropped out of Scouting without earning Eagle or
Gold, it falls into the same category as "used to be in Little
League." Only later will they realize the impact that Scouting
had on them. I think many of us as adult leaders may have a
guilty hand in this if we focus on the goal of Eagle and not on
the goal of life.
I will plead guilty to being disappointed when one of my Scouts
who remains with the troop until he is 18, having reached Life
rank, does not earn Eagle. I am still learning how to conceal
that disappointment. I may get more practice this summer.
Another factor may be the applicants trying to be invisible.
We have all lamented how Scouts go out of their way to avoid
letting anyone know they are Scouts, because it is "uncool,"
or whatever. I still don't know how my son manages to open
a door with his Scout shirt on, yet be wearing a T-shirt with
no Scout shirt visible by the time the door is open.
But smart kids do Scouting. We have eight seniors in our
troop. At least five have close to 4.0 averages, none less
than 3.4. All eight have been accepted into college. Four
are Eagle Scouts, two have finished projects, and one more
is writing his plan now. One turned 18 while a Star Scout.
Not bad, actually.
Especially when you consider the alternatives.
Alan R. Houser ** firstname.lastname@example.org
** Scoutmaster, Troop 24, Berkeley, California **
** Committee Member, Crew 24, Berkeley, California **
** Boy Scout Roundtable Commissioner, Herms District **
** WWW page ** http://www.emf.net/~troop24/t24.html **