August 2019: Badges: More Than Decorations
Oh, those Girl Scout Badges, much sought after and hard earned.
That’s my sash in the picture above. I am proud of every badge I
earned and sewed on with fishing line, which by the way, does not
ensure that they won’t fall off one day! My biggest accomplishment as
a girl member was the attainment of Girl Scout’s highest award then
called First Class Scout, now called Gold Award. It’s the “Be
Prepared” patch and the four pins surrounding it on my sash. The sash
is nice as a memento, but the skills and confidence I gained as a Girl
Scout that made me a successful adult are the truly priceless
Programs in cybersecurity, mechanical engineering, robotics, space science, environmental stewardship, the outdoors-all developed by GSUSA and implemented locally by GSNEO—are adopted one girl at a time, and the cumulative impact across the United States is striking:
- More than 3 million badges have been earned this year.
- In the month of May alone, Girl Scouts earned over 620,000 badges.
- Since October 2018, in just eight months, girls earned over 75,900 cybersecurity badges. That’s nearly 9,500 a month.
- From Fiscal Year 2017 to 2018, Girl Scouts earning Outdoor badges increased 28 percent and Girl Scouts earning STEM badges increased 64 percent.
These are incredible numbers—and there’s more to come! Just think of
all the impact we are having in giving girls confidence in these
fields where women have traditionally been underrepresented and in
outdoor adventures that encourage risk-taking and skills mastery. Last
month, exciting new badges in High Adventure were launched as well as
expanded offerings in computer science with Coding for Good for girls
in K–12 and Cybersecurity and Space Science for our older girls. But
we are not stopping there! There are plans in the works for even more
badges, doubling down on civics programming, with new Democracy badges
coming in 2020.
These badges give girls the skills they need to make the changes they want to see in the world so no matter what path they take, our girls will be leading the way.
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