- They learned, and I learned, that they can do hard things. Achieving the rank of an Eagle Scout isn't easy. The actual percentage of boys who join scouting and then go on to earn their Eagle Rank ranges anywhere from 2-6%, depending on whose numbers you are hearing. But, that is not very many in any case. When my oldest son advanced from Cub Scouting to Boy Scouting and I looked at the requirements for Eagle, I wondered how they could possibly expect my young 11 year old son to accomplish all of those things! (I didn't say that to him out loud.) With the help of some great leaders and the opportunities that Scouting provided, all three of them set the goal to make Eagle and they did it!
- They learned practical skills that help them in their day to day lives. Scouting isn't only about camping, although my boys are all very proficient at that. Scouts also learn about their place in the world and community. They learn personal management. They learn to serve others. I made some printable decorations that I am going to share with you. The thing that my son wanted me to be sure to include on one of them is the phrase, "Physically Strong, Mentally Awake, and Morally Straight." That is what he realizes Scouting helped to build in him. They also complete merit badges in areas that can later translate into careers. Through Scouting, they can get a taste of who they are and what they want to become.
- They gained leadership skills. Scouts learn to lead by serving in various leadership capacities throughout their years in scouts. They learn to plan, prepare and carry out activities, service projects, fund raisers and methods to achieve their ranks. I have seen these skills in action as they have moved into school and careers. Their employers have noticed them as well.
Everything looked really nice, and I think my son was pleased with the result. But, I said that I wanted it to be memorable and I think the most memorable moments were made by my son when he handed out Mentor Pins to two men who had been his leaders and helped him along his trail to Eagle. One of them had been his Bishop in our ward of our church, which is the charter organization of our troop . He had been so helpful and supportive of the boys in Scouting and Jacob gave him his pin and told him and all of us that, "We could always tell that he loved us." Well, that choked us all up and filled me with gratitude that my sons all had leaders who were truly good men that they could look up to and who cared about them. As a parent, that help is golden.