NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Local News

June 3, 2014

Rowley teens earn Gold Awards from Girl Scouts

ROWLEY — The day was as golden and bright as the awards that three Rowley teens received Sunday at the year-end ceremony of the Bayberry Neighborhood Girl Scout Council at Triton High School. All Triton juniors and from Rowley Troop 6061, Jolene Buczala, Amanda Rotberg and Madeleine Schmuch were recognized with the highest achievement in Girl Scouts — the Gold Award.

The Gold Award, comparable to earning Eagle Scout in Boy Scouts, is conferred on those Girl Scouts who complete a community project with more than 80 hours of time committed.

The girls need to identify a need in their community and follow a seven-step process — identify, investigate, build a team, create a plan, present and gather feedback, take action, educate and inspire — to earn their award. According to the Girl Scouts of America website, only 5.4 percent of eligible Girl Scouts successfully achieve the Gold Award.

Earning the Gold Award takes an enormous commitment of time and energy, said Troop Leader Karen Schmuch, noting that before achieving the Gold Award, these girls completed their Girl Scout Silver Awards and a Leadership Journey as prerequisites.

“They each submitted project proposals and worked with members of the community to implement their plans and took about a year to complete their projects,” she said. “I’m enormously proud of Jolene, Amanda and Madeleine for completing their Gold Awards.”

For Buczala, her Gold Award was earned for creating a webpage called “Lost in Triton,” an easily navigated section off Triton’s home page geared to help middle and high school students find their way around what can be a very confusing campus.

“I remembered how hard it was to get around the school as a freshman and wanted to help others out,” said Buczala when asked how this project came about. Buczala spent days creating clickable, interactive maps of the two buildings, including descriptions of the rooms, room numbers and a list of teachers.

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