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Gold Award Girl Scout: Emma Conroy, Golden, “Educational Video called ‘EEGs Made Easy'”

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

I created an educational video explaining how to have an EEG (anelectroencephalogramused) to diagnose epilepsy. It is a step-by-step video explaining exactly what happens in a humorous way, so kids aren’t scared by the process.

How did you measure the impact your Gold Award project made on your target audience? 

I know that I reached the 40 people that came to my launch party, 20 people from my diagnostic community, at least 350 people on Facebook, and the 35 people at the Epilepsy Foundation’s open house. I currently have over 1,000 views on the video. I also have nine comments on the actual video. I have received comments from the epilepsy community such as:

“This video is so accurate, I wish there was a video like this when I was a kid.” – An adult at the Epilepsy foundation open house

“You covered exactly what happens.”- Katie (living with epilepsy)

“This has been so much help.”- Jean (working at the Epilepsy Foundation).

“It was just like the EEGs I’ve had.” – Grace (a girl living with epilepsy)

How is your project sustainable? How will your project continue to impact after your involvement? 

This project is very sustainable because it is posted on the Internet via YouTube and everyone knows the Internet is forever.  It is also posted on the Epilepsy Foundation’s website, and Children’s Hospital. People will be able to continue to access it, and my partners will continue to spread the word. In addition, my neurologist Dr. Chapman will continue to direct people to the video, and the Epilepsy Foundation is handing out more than 500 business cards to newly diagnosed kids and adults to spread the word. I am also working with my pediatrician, Dr. Sorenna Kirkegard, at Kaiser Permanente to insure they use it for patient education as well.

What is your project’s global and/or national connection?

On a global scale, it can impact people all over the world because YouTube has subtitles, so people will know what is happening no matter which language they speak.

What did you learn about yourself? 

I learned that I wanted to ease the fears of children going into a frightening procedure.  As a child I had to have many EEGs and it was scary because the first one was when I was three-years-old.  I knew what others would feel going into have their first EEG and wanted to make sure that they didn’t feel how I felt. By doing this, I learned that I have to pick music that is funny, so even if what is happening isn’t amusing at least the music is. I learned that I wanted to help kids who are worried and so in order to make that happen, I had to show up to meetings with strangers like my advisor and representatives from the Epilepsy Foundation.  I had to be on time and professionally dressed.  I had to make phone calls.  I learned how to get back up when something had to be pushed back or cut out altogether. I gained communication skills that had I not done my Gold Award, I would not know. And one of the most important things I learned was time management, I needed to set deadlines and budget my time to make it possible to reach that deadline.

How will earning your Gold Award impact you in the future?

Since starting my Gold Award project, I have learned many valuable skills that I can use in the future including time management, good communication, perseverance, and self-confidence.  I can learn on the fly, like downloading a film editing program and watching myself on tape.   I will know what is expected of me in the future because of my Gold Award.  I will know what to do when entering a job interview and how to move on when something doesn’t go according to plan.

Why do you feel the Gold Award was an important part of your Girl Scout experience?

The decision to try for my Gold Award was an important part of my experience.  It goes above and beyond what the average Girl Scout does, and helps people not only on a community scale, but also on a national or global scale which helps make the world a better place. I wanted to earn it because it pushed me farther than I would have pushed myself. When I posted my video, I had the hope that it would get 100 views and now it’s been viewed over 1,000 times and it continues to grow. I hope that other Girl Scouts get their Gold Award because it introduces new challenges and you learn more about what you are capable of doing.

How did earning your Gold Award help you become a G.I.R.L. (go-getter, innovator, risk-taker, leader)?

I took a big risk earning my Gold Award because I am not very tech savvy and I am an introvert, so being in front of a camera and having to edit what I did to make it look presentable was very challenging. I could have done a project that was better suited to my skill sets, but I saw a problem and wanted to fix it, so I took a risk to help others even though it may not have been easy for me. Deciding to pursue gold makes me a go-getter.  Deciding on an education video was innovative for me.  Delegating tasks to my troop and working with various agencies and CBS4 News definitely look leadership skills that I had to learn as I went along. Earning my Gold Award was a challenge I set for myself and I did not know all the things it would teach me along the way.  I am very happy I was able to rise and complete the goal I set for myself.

**IMPORTANT NOTE: This blog represents only a small fraction of the hard work, dedication, and requirements that go into earning a Girl Scout Gold Award. It is simply a brief summary, which is meant to inspire Girl Scouts to Go Gold in the future. For more information on earning your Gold Award, please email highestawards@gscolorado.org