State Tech hosts Merit Badge University

Posted 7/29/20

More than 300 Scouts BSA gathered Saturday at State Technical College of Missouri for the Merit Badge University.

For the 19th year, Linn Scouts BSA Troop 17 held the Merit Badge University at …

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State Tech hosts Merit Badge University

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More than 300 Scouts BSA gathered Saturday at State Technical College of Missouri for the Merit Badge University.
For the 19th year, Linn Scouts BSA Troop 17 held the Merit Badge University at State Tech. Debbie Backes, Troop 17 coordinator, along with State Tech employees, coordinated the all-day event, which started with a flag ceremony.
“We are very pleased to be able to host this year’s event, especially in light of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Backes. “We also very much appreciate the efforts of State Tech faculty and staff to ensure the college was clean and ready for our event. This is a long-standing tradition here at State Tech, and we look forward to hosting the Merit Badge University here for many years to come.”
The opening ceremonies concluded with participants reciting the Pledge of Allegiance, Scout Oath, and Scout Law.
Shortly following the ceremonies, scouts dispersed to one of 37 merit badge classes to learn the basics of the topic and gain hands-on experience. By the end of the day, scouts earned a merit badge that moved them one step closer to attaining Eagle Rank.
One course, Dog Care, was taught by Lisa Groves Bax, a child advocate volunteer for abused/neglected children in the judicial system in Missouri. She saw the need for a resource to assist the scores of children facing the daunting task of appearing or testifying in court.
Her dog, Olive, was rescued from the streets of Los Angeles by Brandon McMillan, host and animal trainer of the Emmy Award-winning CBS show, Lucky Dog, Season 4 Episode 6.
After extensive training with McMillan, Olive was united with her forever family in Missouri and ready to live her purpose as a certified therapy dog. Olive was tested and evaluated by Therapy Dogs International (TDI).
Vulnerable children are facing unknown proceedings because an adult failed to care properly for them. Olive’s mission is to make sure that no child walks alone through the courtroom doors, and provides comfort throughout the unknown journey that the child faces against their abuser or neglecting adult, which in most cases is their very own parent(s).
Olive has served more than 300 children since beginning in the court system in 2016 and continues to assist children with extremely difficult criminal trials in order to get a conviction against the abuser. Olive is a hero to the children she serves and deserves to add this title to her endless endeavors advocating for the awareness of child abuse/neglect and serving children in the courtroom.
Lisa and Olive will find out July 30 if they will win the American Hero Dog Award.
In addition to Dog Care, Merit Badges offered Saturday included American Business, American Culture, Animal Science, Archery, Automotive Maintenance, Aviation, Chemistry, Chess, Citizenship in the Community, Citizenship in the Nation, Citizenship in the World, Collections, Communication, Cooking, Crime Prevention, Digital Technology, Emergency Preparedness, Fingerprinting, First Aid, Genealogy, Geology, Home Repairs, Inventing, Metalwork, Painting, Personal Fitness, Personal Management, Photography, Public Health, Robotics, Scouting Heritage, Search and Rescue, Stamp Collecting, Sustainability, Traffic Safety, and Welding.

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