Elective Merit Badges offered at Troop 54

 

By Caleb Gilmartin

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Architecture

Mike A

“Architecture is not just the special buildings like cathedrals, museums, or sports stadiums we read about or see on television; it is as normal as the homes, places of worship, schools, and shopping malls where we live, worship, work, learn, and play every day. However, architecture is more than just common shelter; building has always satisfied the human need to create something of meaning. Even the simplest form of architecture is a work of art that requires thought and planning.”

 

 
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Art

Raluca M

“This merit badge concentrates on two-dimensional art, specifically drawing and painting in various media, including an introduction to design applications in the fields of graphic arts and industrial design, history and design principles, and how these fields relate to fine art.”

 
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Astronomy

Ryan M

“In learning about astronomy, Scouts study how activities in space affect our own planet and bear witness to the wonders of the night sky: the nebulae, or giant clouds of gas and dust where new stars are born; old stars dying and exploding; meteor showers and shooting stars; the moon, planets, and a dazzling array of stars.”

 
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Wilderness Survival

Lonnie W

“In their outdoor activities, Scouts learn to bring the clothing and gear they need, to make good plans, and do their best to manage any risks. But now and then, something unexpected happens. When things go wrong, the skills of wilderness survival can help make everything right again.”

 
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Weather

Raluca M.

“Meteorology is the study of Earth's atmosphere and its weather and the ways in which temperature, wind, and moisture act together in the environment. In addition to learning how everyday weather is predicted, Scouts can learn about extreme weather such as thunderstorms, tornadoes, and hurricanes, and how to stay safe.”

 
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Veterinary medicine

Jennifer L

“The field of veterinary medicine in the 21st century is one of the most exciting medical professions in which to work. The skills of a veterinarian are practiced with cutting-edge technology and treatment options, and the profession offers a wide range of career choices.”

 
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Textile

Jennifer L

“People use countless fibers and fabrics in their everyday lives: clothes, carpets, curtains, towels, sheets, upholstered furniture. Add to that list boat sails, book bindings, bandages, flags, sleeping bags, mailbags, airbags, seat belts, backpacks, parachutes, umbrellas, basketball nets, and more.”

 
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Sports

Dawn X, Mike Taylor

“Millions of people participate in sports every year. For some the appeal is the close friendships that come with being part of a team. Some revel in the joy of victory and lessons of defeat. For some, the personal fitness is so important that exercise becomes a daily need. And still others desire the feeling of achievement, that feeling of measurable improvement that comes with dedication to a sport.”

 
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Snow Sports

Dawn X

“Skiing and snowboarding are the fastest and most thrilling ways to travel on foot in snow country. These sports also provide the physical benefits of fresh air, rhythmic action, and strenuous exercise. Many games and contests give snow sports variety and added rewards.”

 
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Shotgun shooting

Kenny B, Mike A

“A shotgun is a precision instrument, designed to shoot a shot charge in a specific pattern to cover a designated area at a certain distance. Unlike a rifle, the bore of the shotgun is not rifled, so the shot emerging from the muzzle is not spinning.”

 
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Scouting Heritage

Randy G

The history of scouting.

 
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scholarship

Maria E, Jennifer L

“Working on the Scholarship merit badge provides Scouts with a great opportunity to become more successful in school. They will learn how to improve their skills in the classroom, develop good study habits, and master techniques for writing reports and taking tests.”

 
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safety

Leanne I

“Knowing about safety helps Scouts to make the right choices and to take the best actions to avoid accidents by making informed choices in their everyday activities and to respond appropriately during an emergency situation.”

 
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robotics

Mark L

“Earning the Robotics merit badge requires a Scout to understand how robots move (actuators), sense the environment (sensors), and understand what to do (programming); he should demonstrate robot design in building a robot. You should help ensure that the Scout has sufficiently explored the field of robotics to understand what it is about, and to discover whether this may be a field of interest for him as a career.”

 
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rifle shooting

Kenny B, Mike A

“Unless a rifle is handled incorrectly or recklessly, it is not dangerous. A rifle, like any other precision instrument, is manufactured to perform a specific task and can do so at no risk to the user or others. By earning this badge, Scouts can develop their shooting skills while learning safe practices.”

 
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reading

Maria E

“If you have ever wanted to go back in time or wished you could visit the future, if you are curious about the world, or if you are interested in how things work or like to learn new things, these are all reasons why you should want to read. Reading is fascinating. It's full of surprises. And it will take you places you can't get to in any other way.”

 
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railroading

Randy G

“By earning this badge, Scouts can learn about the history of railroading, its place in modern society, careers in railroading, and hobbies related to railroading.”

 
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public speaking

Kieth D

“A lot happens during the course of every person's life and your ability to communicate your feelings and ideas is the best way to connect to the larger world. Even if you haven't stood at a podium on the stage and find the whole idea scary, sooner or later, someone is going to ask you to get up and say a few words. If you are prepared, it won't be scary. It can even be fun.”

 
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plumbing

Mike T

“Plumbing, including pipe fitting, is an important and well-paid occupation. The industry is quite broad. It covers installations and repairs in homes, commercial properties, and factories. Plumbing pipelines are used for water supply, waste drainage, natural-gas heating, and many other purposes.”

 
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Photography

Keith D, Ryan M

“Beyond capturing family memories, photography offers a chance to be creative. Many photographers use photography to express their creativity, using lighting, composition, depth, color, and content to make their photographs into more than snapshots. Good photographs tell us about a person, a news event, a product, a place, a scientific breakthrough, an endangered animal, or a time in history.”

 
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painting

Jennifer L

“This merit badge provides an opportunity for Scouts to learn more about painting, including both the artistic and practical aspects.”

 
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nature

Maria E, Jennifer L, Raluca M

“There is a very close connection between the soil, the plants, and all animal life, including people. Understanding this connection, and the impact we have upon it, is important to preserving the wilderness, as well as to our own well-being as members of the web of nature.”

 
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Music

Kate A

“The history of music is rich and exciting. Through the ages, new music has been created by people who learned from tradition, then explored and innovated. All the great music has not yet been written. Today, the possibilities for creating new music are limitless.”

 
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medicine

Noe S, Jennifer L

“The practice of medicine has a rich history that spans several centuries. Since the first use of plants and other items as simple medicines and balms, many men and women have contributed to the advancement of the "healing arts."”

 

Landscape Architecture

Mike A

“Landscape architects design and plan the various outdoor spaces in modern communities - neighborhood parks, soccer fields, school grounds, places of worship, office parks, shopping malls, cemeteries, and lakes - creating outdoor places that people will care about and want to visit.”

 
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Journalism

Kieth D

“One thing is for sure about journalism: It is never boring. For a reporter, almost every day is different from the last. One day you might interview the mayor of the city, the next day report on a car accident, and the day after that preview a new movie.”

 
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indian lore

Maria E

“Far different from the stereotypes or common images that are portrayed on film, on television, and in many books and stories, American Indians have many different cultures, languages, religions, styles of dress, and ways of life. To learn about these different groups is to take an exciting journey of discovery in which you will meet some of America's most fascinating peoples.”

 
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golf

Kieth D, Dawn X

“Golf is unique because the players police themselves. Other sports depend upon referees or umpires to apply penalties when there are infractions of the rules. In golf, every player is expected to act honorably, and the welfare and integrity of the game rely on every player's honesty. This is why golf often is referred to as a "gentleman's game."”

 
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GENEALOGY

Jennifer L

“Exploring your roots—where your family name came from, why your family lives where it does, what your parents and grandparents did for fun when they were your age—can be fascinating. Discovering your ancestors back through history is what genealogy is all about.”

 
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Forestry

Mark L

“In working through the Forestry merit badge requirements, Scouts will explore the remarkable complexity of a forest and identify many species of trees and plants and the roles they play in a forest's life cycle.They will also discover some of the resources forests provide to humans and come to understand that people have a very large part to play in sustaining the health of forests.”

 
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Fly Fishing

Mark L

“Fly-fishing is a specialized form of fishing that combines skill and artistry. Because it is so rich with tradition, it is a passion for millions of people. The beauty of the water, the solitude, and the skills that the sport requires have made fly-fishing very important in the lives of many notable people.”

 
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Fishing

Keith D, Mark L

 

“Every Scout ought to be able to fish in order to get food for himself. A tenderfoot [beginner] who starved on the bank of a river full of fish would look very silly, yet it might happen to one who had never learned to catch fish.”

 
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Fire Safety

Chris D

“The ability to use fire safely is essential to human survival. By earning this merit badge, Scouts will learn to uses fire safely and responsibly, how to prevent home fires, and how to handle fire safely, as well as burn prevention, and camping safety.”

 
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Entrepreneurship

Olivia H

“By earning the Entrepreneurship merit badge, Scouts will learn about identifying opportunities, creating and evaluating business ideas, and exploring the feasibility (how doable it is) of an idea for a new business. They will also have the chance to fit everything together as they start and run their own business ventures.”

 
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Engineering

Mike T

“Engineers use both science and technology to turn ideas into reality, devising all sorts of things, ranging from a tiny, low-cost battery for your cell phone to a gigantic dam across the mighty Yangtze River in China.”

 
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electronics

Manuel P, Bill E

“Electronics is the science that controls the behavior of electrons so that some type of useful function is performed. Today, electronics is a fast-changing and exciting field.”

 

 

 
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electricity

Mark L, Bill E

“Electricity is a powerful and fascinating force of nature. As early as 600 BC, observers of the physical world suspected that electricity existed but did not have a name for it. In fact, real progress in unraveling the mystery of electricity has come only within the last 250 years.”

 
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drafting

Mike A, Mike T

“Drafting is a highly refined form of drawing used to communicate ideas to engineers, architects, and craftspeople. In earning this badge, Scouts learn the importance of accuracy and simplicity in developing a drawing that shows precise details in a simple format.”

 
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Dog Care

Raluca M

“The love and interdependence between humans and dogs has endured for thousands of years. Evidence suggests that dogs and humans started relying on each other thousands of years ago. Today, dogs are our coworkers and companions. They assist search-and-rescue teams, law enforcement officers, hunters, farmers, and people with disabilities. They also play with us and keep us company.”

 
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Digital technology

Ryan M

“Technology has come a long way since Computers merit badge was first introduced in 1967. This badge will teach Scouts about technology in the digital age.”

 
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collections

Randy G

“Collecting can be an educational and financially rewarding pastime: a collector must educate himself about a specific subject, be able to tell which items are worth preserving, how to catalog and organize his collection, and how to evaluate the value of items.”

 
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Chess

Mohammad H

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bird study

Jennifer L

“Birds are among the most fascinating creatures on Earth. Many are beautifully colored. Others are accomplished singers. Many of the most important discoveries about birds and how they live have been made by amateur birders. In pursuing this hobby, a Scout might someday make a valuable contribution to our understanding of the natural world.”

 
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backpacking

Maria E, John D, Jeff Y

“Earning the Backpacking merit badge will be demanding but rewarding. Scouts will learn what equipment to carry on their backs and what knowledge to have in their heads. In addition, Scouts will discover how to protect the environment by traveling and camping without leaving a trace. By mastering the basics of backpacking, Scouts will develop an even deeper respect for the outdoors.”

 
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aviation

Mike A

“For most of history, people have dreamed of flying, imagining how it would feel to soar through the sky like an eagle or hover in midair like a hummingbird, to float on unseen currents, free of Earth's constant tug, able to travel great distances and to rise above any obstacle. Today, through aviation, we can not only join the birds but also fly farther, faster, and higher than they ever could.”

 
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athletics

Mike T, Dawn X

“Being involved in an athletic endeavor is not only a way to have fun, but it also is one of the best ways for a person to maintain a healthy and strong body, living up to the promise each Scout makes "to keep myself physically strong."”