Downtime

Apr 11 2011   10:21AM GMT

The Boy Scouts of America moves into 21st century

WAshford Profile: WAshford

Tags:
NASA
Robotics

The Boy Scouts of America has moved into the 21st century by enabling members to aim for merit badges in the realm of science, technology, engineering and maths.

Today’s scouts are less bothered about things like archery, bird study, dog care or coin collecting than they were in the 1930s, and more likely to go for cinematography, computers and robotics, the latest addition to the list.

Announcing the new merit badge, chief scout Bob Mazzuca said the organisation continues to prepare young people for success in all areas of life.

The badge requirements took 14 months to develop with input from organisations including the Carnegie Mellon Robotics Academy and NASA, according to US reports.

To earn the badge, scouts must not only design, build, program, and test a robot, but also share their engineering notes, attend a robotics competition, and explain how robots are used today.

Downtime suspects that robots that can light campfires using only a few twigs and a piece of rope will be high on the list of development priorities.

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