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Monday, August 24, 2015

Oil and Gas Engineering Merit Badge to Expand to Camp Muskingum Boy Scout Camp

A press release from the Ohio Oil and Gas Energy Education Program (OOGEEP):

Boy Scouts recently attending a STEM camp at Camp Muskingum successfully completed an innovative oil and gas specific curriculum designed in partnership with the Ohio Oil and Gas Energy Education Program (OOGEEP) and the Muskingum Valley Boy Scout Council. Based on the success of this camp, and through funding provided by Ohio’s oil and gas producers, OOGEEP plans to offer a full oil and gas engineering merit badge at the camp in 2016.

The merit badge is already in its third year at Camp Manatoc near Akron. The exciting program introduces scouts to the oil and gas industry through both classroom and field learning. The badge is designed to: showcase how engineering is crucial to Ohio’s oil and gas industry; explain how companies produce energy for Ohio from Ohio; allow scouts to put their engineering knowledge to work building models; give scouts a first hand looking at a working oil and gas well; and introduce engineering career paths available in the industry.

“As an Eagle Scout and current engineer working in Ohio, I’m so proud to have watched this program develop and grow,” said Tim McNutt, General Manager of Pipeline Operations for Dominion East Ohio. “Strong science education is so important and this program teaches science and engineering to Scouts who are eager to learn.”

“Our industry must continue to educate young people about not only what we do, but also the technology and science necessary to produce the energy we use every day,” said Rhonda Reda, OOGEEP Executive Director. “These are some of the best and brightest young men our state has to offer and we’re so excited to help fund this learning opportunity.”

“This badge will be a perfect complement to what we do at our camp and provide important information to our Scouts,” said Ed Mulholland, Executive Director of the Muskingum Valley Council of Boy Scouts of America. “Many of our young men have oil and gas activity happening where they live, so to learn about this industry and the vital role engineering plays in it, is a win for everyone.”

The full merit badge will be an exciting learning opportunity for the Scouts. They will review videos explaining the process of oil and gas development in Ohio. Using iPads funded by OOGEEP, they research information then visit a working well located at the camp. They learn how engineering is used in oil and gas development, then put it into practice by building models of pipelines using PVC pipe and derricks using straws and counter weights. Scouts are also given the opportunity to interview active engineers in the industry, gaining first hand knowledge how education translates into the working world. The week ends with the young men researching careers such as electrical, civil, petroleum, mechanical, chemical or environmental engineers. They also take career assessments, creating career portfolios and learning about the various engineering opportunities available in the oil and gas and other industries.

The full merit badge will be offered at weekly camps next summer at Camp Muskingum. More than 300 scouts have already earned engineering merit badges through the program at Camp Manatoc. OOGEEP is exploring ways to work with Girl Scout camps in Ohio.
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