Seven young women earn Girl Scout Gold Awards

| 23 Mar 2018 | 02:32

— Seven Monroe Community Girl Scouts are now officially the recipients of the Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest national achievement awarded by Girl Scouts of the USA.
Only approximately five percent of all Girl Scouts earn this distinction, which was created in 1916 and recognizes an individual's "Take Action" project that reaches beyond the Girl Scout organization and provides a sustainable lasting benefit to the Girl Scout's larger community.
The Gold Award is equal in stature and merit to the Boy Scout Eagle Scout Award. University research indicates that adding a Gold Award to a college application is a critical element in the admissions-decision making process.
The Gold Award requires a minimum of 80 hours of work in planning and project completion. It follows the successful completion of two Girl Scout Journey Awards, or a single Journey Award if a Girl Scout is already a Silver Award recipient, the second highest achievement at Girl Scout can earn.
Recipients, who can be ninth-grade to 12th grade students, typically spend between one and two years completing their projects.
All 80-plus hours must be completed by the awardee, though a Girl Scout may use troop members and others from the community to help her. Plans must be developed with the aid of an advisor, then a project proposal must be submitted and approved by the girl's local council before starting the project, and a final report submitted and approved after the project's completion.
Recipients, who five high school seniors and two college freshman, are:
• Brianna DeGennaro/Troop 567DeGennaro's project, The Kindness Tree, is a printed tree on the Sapphire Elementary School’s cafeteria wall. It is being used to help bullying prevention. Teachers can put a student’s name up on the tree when the student acts in a kind manner toward another student or faculty member. Kind words and saying are painted throughout the school bathrooms as well. DeGennaro is a freshman at Sacred Heart University in Connecticut.
• Alena Deluise/Troop 283Deluise, a senior at Monroe-Woodbury High School, focused on preventing texting and driving. Her goal was to spread her knowledgeable word about being safe at all times. She spoke to large groups of drivers of varying ages about safety for themselves and those around them. Deluise will be studying public relations and multimedia in college, but is undecided on her school.
• Kendall Fioranti Troop 202Fioranti, a Monroe-Woodbury High School senior, built a memorial garden for the Harriman VFW to reinforce the importance of giving veterans the respect they deserve. She worked with veterans and classmates to create a garden featuring a flag-inspired theme. She will study nursing at a yet to be determined New York State university.
• Jaclyn Imhof/Troop 202Imhof, a Monroe-Woodbury High School senior, created and ran an arts and crafts summer camp for children going into first though fifth-grades. She also oversaw the repainting of the Village of Monroe Nativity Scene that is displayed every Christmas season, working with campers who will also be able to see their painting work for years to come. Additionally, an art show was held to showcase campers' work. Imhof chose to work with children because she plans to study history with a certification in childhood and special education this fall at either St. Thomas Aquinas College or Dominican College.
• Dagny Lytle/Troop 569Lytle educated people about food allergies and created a website about Celiac Disease. She conducted many workshops for children of all ages regarding celiac complications and disease indications. Lytle also created a website where she designed video games and published links to recipes to be used as resources. She is a freshman at Savannah College of Art and Design in Georgia where she studies computer animation.
• Heidi Willins/JulietteWillins raised food allergy awareness in restaurants. One in 13 children nationwide have life-threatening food allergies (anaphylaxis) and this number is growing. Willins, a senior at George F. Baker High School in Tuxedo, researched and created a PowerPoint presentation to educate restaurant management and staff. She met with 20 local eateries and presented her food allergy awareness presentation. Willins plans to study business at Fairfield University.
• Katarina Woods/Troop 202Woods published a book entitled, "The People, Places and History of Orange County." Her project aimed to bring unity. She interviewed residents and organizers and visited various historical sites to speak with historians and civic leaders. Woods, a Monroe-Woodbury High School senior, hopes to share the sentiment that “our history helps form us but, it’s our willingness to learn and listen to each other that determines our future.” She is undecided which university she will attend but will pursue a dual major in history and secondary education.
Gold Awards were presented at a recent ceremony honoring all Girl Scout Heart of the Hudson Gold Awards winners at the Poughkeepsie Grand Hotel.
- Nancy Kriz