Since Arthur Eldred of New York earned this nation’s first Eagle Scout Award in 1912, more than 2 million young men have achieved the Boy Scouts of America’s highest rank. To attain the Eagle Scout badge, scouts must demonstrate proficiency in leadership, service, and outdoor skills at multiple levels. In addition to 21 life skills merit badges required, each Scout must complete an extensive self-directed service project. The Scout must plan, organize, lead, and manage the entire service effort prior to his 18th birthday. Fewer that 4 percent of Boy Scouts earn this coveted rank. As a result, over the past century, Eagle Scout has become widely recognized – both in and outside of Scouting – as a mark of distinction.
With a grant from the John Templeton Foundation, Baylor University’s Program for Prosocial Behavior conducted a two-year study to measure the lifelong effects of being in the Scouting program, and more specifically, of attaining the rank of Eagle Scout. Join us as Dr. Byron Johnson, the study’s principal investigator, reflects upon the Merit Beyond the Badge findings, the personal and professional benefits for the participants, and the effects their leadership over the past 100 years have had upon their communities and country.
More About the Speakers
Byron R. Johnson, Ph.D.
Distinguished Professor of the Social Sciences, and Director, Program on Prosocial Behavior, Baylor University
John Edward Hilboldt
Director, Lectures & Seminars