Advanced Essay #3

The skills we learn in school can be often be used in our daily lives. However, not all of those skills can be used. For example, as you get older the math you learn in school becomes less and less usable in daily life. The only real acception is a career that has a lot to do with math, like engineering or something involving physics. My main point is that school can’t teach you everything, and not everything you learn will be usable later on. The goal of school is to increase your understanding of different topics.

There are kids that lack things like social skills, and a school is not really focused on developing social skills. That is where the scouting programs come in. Scouting helps develop social skills even if the scout has Autism, which makes it harder for someone to develop those necessary social skills. I know because my older brother has aspergers and scouting has helped him to be more social. He still struggles with those skills, but his social skills are much better than they were. Scouting doesn’t just develop social skills, it also develops skills a scout may need to react to an emergency.

On October 11, 2017 the Boy Scouts of America made an announcement that starting in September of 2018 girls will be allowed to join Cub Scouts, progress into Boy Scouts, and earn the rank of Eagle Scout. Most people, like the BSA’s Chief Scout Executive Michael Surbaugh,  agreed with the decision, and thought it was a great idea. “‘The values of Scouting—trustworthy, loyal, helpful, kind, brave and reverent, for example—are important for both young men and women,’ said Chief Scout Executive Michael Surbaugh in a statement. ‘We strive to bring what our organization does best—developing character and leadership for young people—to as many families and youth as possible as we help shape the next generation of leaders.’” However, the decision also received backlash from both Boy Scout and Girl Scout leaders. “‘The need for female leadership has never been clearer or more urgent than it is today—and only Girl Scouts has the expertise to give girls and young women the tools they need for success,’ the Girl Scouts said in a statement.”

I agree with the decision made by the BSA, and think it is a good idea. Like Surbaugh, I think the values that the BSA teaches are important for all people. The BSA’s main goal is to teach the scouts how to be better people. The Boy Scouts does a great job at making sure each scout leaves the program as a better person. Just like an Eagle Scout I remember from when I first joined my troop. His name was Christopher Alvelo, and I had only known him for a short time when many news reports like this one came out, “A teen Eagle Scout, killed in a car crash, is being hailed as a hero for taking the wheel of his stepfather's SUV after the man suffered a medical emergency. The teen's actions saved the lives of the man and two other passengers.

17-year-old Christopher Alvelo, his stepfather, 51-year-old Joe Snyder and two friends were driving home from an Eagle Scout trash clean-up project in Pennypack Park on Saturday when Snyder suffered a medical emergency shortly after 12:30 p.m.” The friends in the SUV were two scouts also in my troop. Here is what happens next, “Alvelo, who was in the passenger seat of the 2007 Ford Explorer, grabbed the wheel and tried to take control of the SUV.

The teen was able to steer the vehicle off the road and into a parking lot for the North Philadelphia Jet Center at Northeast Philadelphia Airport along the 2800 block of Red Lion Road. However, he couldn't get to the break and the vehicle slammed into an unoccupied Paratransit van.

Alvelo died at the scene.”

These tragic events happened on October 26, 2013, but if Chris wasn’t a scout he may not have been able to react the way he did and save three people’s lives. At that time I had just started Boy Scouts and Chris was one of many scouts in the troop, so I didn’t really know him. However, I do know that at the time that Chris died he wasn’t technically an Eagle Scout. In order to earn the rank of Eagle Scout the scout must have a certain number of merit badges. Then, the scout must complete a service project they come up with and supervise. Lastly, there is a ceremony acknowledging that the scout has earned the rank of Eagle.

There never was a ceremony for Chris, but my Scoutmaster and my dad, the Assistant Scoutmaster, decided that Chris met all of the requirements needed for the rank and that he lived the Scout Oath and the Scout Law. So even though Chris wasn’t there to receive the Eagle Scout award, he saved lives and he truly earned the rank of Eagle Scout.