Joshua Harwood of Roslyn Estates was recently honored with his Eagle Scout distinction.
At the North Hempstead Town Hall, six adults from the Shelter Rock District convened in June for a Board of Review for Harwood, reviewing his entire Curriculum Vitae for his schoolwork at Roslyn High School, his extracurricular activities, his community and public service, his leadership, his religious affiliation and involvement at Temple Tifereth Israel of Glen Cove, and of course his record in Scouting.
He was questioned for nearly two hours on important issues of the day, on current events, on hypothetical situations of danger and when to be proactive and when to let things play out. It’s a difficult and sometimes nerve-wracking couple of hours, but it’s all to ensure that Harwood has earned the rank and title of Eagle Scout.
In order to earn the Eagle Scout rank, Harwood had to show proficiency in advanced first aid, outdoor skills, and leadership. He was required to earn at least 21 merit badges in various subject matter such as Personal Management, Citizenship in the Nation, and Communications. He also was required to complete a major project in community service.
Harwood chose an environmental conservation project where he planned and oversaw a group of Scouts and adults in the construction and installation of Wood Duck nesting houses at Cattail Pond in the Alley Pond Environmental Center in Douglaston.
The project sought to correct an environmental imbalance caused by recent construction in the area which took away the natural nesting grounds for the indigenous water fowl. The project took over 250 man-hours to complete.
Currently, only 4 percent of all boys who enter the Scouting program earn their Eagle Scout Rank, which is why the rank still holds such cache and meaning with employers and college admissions committees.
A college admissions officer at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute was asked why prestigious institutions like RPI put so much stock in the rank of Eagle Scout – his answer was that Scouts who can keep their focus on a particular achievement though their teenage years, which are arguably the most difficult growth and development part of their lives, have the single-mindedness and determination that RPI looks for in an incoming freshman.
The 4 percent number is not expected to change significantly as Scouting undergoes a sea change in admitting girls to their iconic boys-only program, in 2019.
“Review Boards like the one that examined Harwood will continue to keep standards high, regardless of gender” said Steven Cahn, Unit Commissioner for Roslyn’s Scout Troop and Cub Scout Pack.
Harwood is the son of Linda Salamon and Dr. Adam Harwood of Roslyn Estates. Harwood is now one of a family of three Eagle Scouts – his brother Zachary in 2016 and his father Adam in 1977.
Harwood is member of the Roslyn High School Class of 2018 and will attend University of Vermont in the fall.
He has been a member of Troop 267, sponsored by Temple Beth Sholom of Roslyn Heights, for which his father has been the long-time Scoutmaster.