by Terry Rogers
Wyatt Brisbane joined the Boy Scouts in third grade and initially wanted to reach Eagle Scout because it was the highest level he could achieve in the organization with no thought to how significant reaching that level would be. As he got older, he learned that a very small percentage of scouts reach the Eagle level and he wanted to be sure he was in that percentage.
“For my project, I built a garden for the people at the Frederica Senior Center,” Brisbane said. “My mom works for Delaware Hospice so it was easy to get in contact. The area we were working with was just bare grass beforehand. The day we created the garden, we pulled up the sod, then put down potting soil and mulch, most of which was donated by local businesses. We put in plants and repainted an old wooden bench they had, turning the area into a much nicer looking entrance to the senior center.”
Brisbane, who is from Frederick MD but moved to Milford after Kindergarten, attended Milford School District schools until high school when he attended Sussex Tech. He is now entering his second year at Drexel University in the electrical engineering program. While at Drexel this year, he will be doing an on-site co-op job at Philadelphia Water Department for six months. This is a program at Drexel designed that allows students to get a feel for their major prior to graduation.
According to Brisbane, the climb to Eagle Scout grew more difficult as time went on. Each level requires scouts to show leadership skills and experience while earning various merit badges. He felt that the Eagle project was particularly hard as it required a significant amount of planning, organization and coordination. Brisbane believes his biggest challenge throughout the journey was himself.
“When I was 13 or 14, for whatever reason, I wanted to quit,” Brisbane said. “But my then-Scoutmaster, Duane Fox, talked me out of it and I stuck with the program. There were a few times along the way where the going got tough, but I kept going forward until the end, finishing the requirements for Eagle about two months before my 18th birthday.”
Brisbane believes that scouting prepared him for many things. He knows many things that will carry him forward in adulthood, including how to cook, camp, lead and work with others.
“When I was interviewed for my position for my co-op job, the person interviewing me told me ‘I will never not interview an applicant who is an Eagle Scout,” Brisbane said. “Scouting gave me a lot of valuable experiences throughout my time in it, and I believe I will carry those experiences with me for the rest of my life. Scouting is a good program to get into, especially when you are young.”
The most rewarding part of his journey was working with younger scouts as a patrol leader.
“When the new guys come in, they’re used to the adults doing everything at camp and the meetings,” Brisbane said. “Then they move on to the Troop and all of a sudden the kids run the show. Naturally, at a campout, a few of them struggle with the program, so it is very rewarding when they finally come around and can handle leadership on their own. As far as after the fact, finally receiving the award at the Court of Honor was also a great feeling, due to school and complications, I couldn’t do my ceremony before I moved away for my Freshman year. Finally getting that award over a year after actually obtaining the rank was great.”
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