SPRING HILL, Kan. – A local girl storms the scouts, earning a record number of merit badges. She also strives for the highest honor among Girl Scouts.
Less than half of 1% of Scouts across the United States have earned all merit badges. Rebecca McCreight is one of them.
“It’s my merit badge belt,” Becca said. “I have 138, that is to say all of them.”
In 2019, the Boy Scouts of America allowed girls to join the program. With older brother Rebecca’s record of 88 merit badges, she had a long way to go before she turned 18.
“What a normal scout can take up to eight years to do, took her about 23 months,” said Rebecca’s father and scout master David McCreight.
He is proud of his daughter for being part of the first class of female Eagle Scouts.
“Very excited for her, and she thinks about it, she can accomplish it,” McCreight said. “And I hope that would be an encouragement to all the women out there.”
The silver circles on Becca’s belt are “Eagle Required” merit badges. These lessons are more life skills based. Scouts learn things like cooking and personal finance.
“It takes a lot of hard work to do them all,” Becca said.
His favorite was stamp collecting. This passion remained and turned into a hobby.
“Animals and those from different countries (are) pretty cool,” Becca said.
These experiences also teach outdoor and leadership skills. As part of an Eagle Scout project, Becca built small desks for children in need. One of the most difficult tasks was small boat navigation. Becca went hypothermic.
“The sailboat overturned and the water was cold. So I ended up getting hypothermia from the wind,” Becca said. “The water wasn’t too bad, but then I went to the ambulance and the ambulance helped me get my body temperature back to normal.”
Becca didn’t back down. On a calmer day, she returned to the water to earn her badge.
She plans to attend Washburn University in the fall to study forensic chemistry. She picked up some skills and a great interest while earning her crime prevention and fingerprinting badges.
She thanks her mother for her motivation and encourages other girls to get involved in Scouting.
“Go out and do your best,” Becca said. “Nothing is out of reach.”
This weekend, Rebecca is heading to West Virginia to teach advanced youth leadership. Fewer than 100 Scouts are invited to be Instructors, a great honour.
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