Boy scouts help spruce up campus during Jamboree day of service
On Wednesday, July 26, nearly 40 boy scouts from Troop 4207 of the East Texas Area Council spent the day on WVU Tech’s Beckley campus. The scouts spent a full work day pulling weeds, mulching flowerbeds and painting parking lot barriers in preparation for WVU Tech’s upcoming semester.
The group was on campus as part of the 2017 National Scout Jamboree’s Messengers of Peace Day of Service project. The five-day initiative connected scouts with 550 service projects in the nine counties surrounding the Summit Bechtel Reserve where the Jamboree is hosted.
Candice Stadler, Assistant Dean of Career Planning and Placement Services, said that the scouts’ help would allow campus facilities personnel to focus on other projects as the university prepares to welcome 1,300 students to campus in mid-August.
“We're excited to have them here to help us and to help them build a sense of community engagement, even though they're so far away from home,” she said.
“It’s a chance for them to learn that no matter where you are, there's always something that needs to be done in the community. This community belongs to all of us, regardless of whether you live in Texas or West Virginia or anywhere else,” she said.
Tim Hill, a Scoutmaster with Troop 4207, said that the service component is an integral part of the National Jamboree experience.
“Every time we host a national event, we do a day of service somewhere in the communities close to where we're staying. Each scout is required to put in service hours for each rank advancement,” he said. “Plus, it feels good to lend a helping hand to someone else. It's a valuable chance to teach them that service to others is a good thing."
Grant Attaway, a 16-year-old scout from Palestine, Texas, said that the he’s had an incredible experience. The group took a short trip to New York and Washington, D.C. before settling in at Glen Jean, West Virginia for the Jamboree. At the Summit, he said his favorite activities have been mountain biking and scuba diving.
At Tech, he spent the day weeding, laying out landscaping fabric and spreading new mulch. And while it was no day in the water, he said it was a great experience.
"It helps us mature as people and get experience on different jobs and help out people in different communities,” he said. “It makes me feel good to help. This will be the college’s first big year here, so it's pretty cool to help them get set up like this and give something to this community.”
For Stadler, the visiting troop is just one of many partnerships the university will have with the Boy Scouts of America organization and the Summit Bechtel Reserve. New WVU Tech students will spend their own day of service helping the Summit get back into shape after the Jamboree in just a few weeks.
“They are a valuable community partner of ours and we're looking forward to a long and active relationship with them,” she said.
Stadler also said that the project could not have come together without the help of WVU Tech AmeriCorps VISTA Scotty Stone, WVU Tech Director of Facilities Planning and Management Rob Moyer and the facilities team at WVU Tech.
View photos from the day’s activities on Flickr.