What did you do for your Gold Award project?
My Gold Award addressed the lack of informed voters in my high school and community. I created a survey that helped the survey taker understand if they are most closely aligned with the Republican, Democrat, or Independent political party. Through my research, I found that uninformed voters consistently vote off of single-issues like abortion or gun rights/control, yet they may not be voting for the candidate or party that will represent the majority of their beliefs. Being an informed voter takes a lot of research, and knowing which political party you align with is a good place to start.
How did you measure the impact your Gold Award project made on your target audience?
Each person who takes the survey learns with which major political party they most closely identify. Many of my peers that took the survey had a preconceived idea of the political party that best represented their views, yet the survey results told a different story. One version of my survey focused on candidates for the Denver mayoral election. My grandpa had one candidate in mind. However, after he took my survey, he was surprised to find that his chosen candidate did not represent the majority of his views. The same thing happened when I presented my survey to the League of Women Voters.
How is your project sustainable? How will your project continue to impact after your involvement?
My project is sustainable through the Civics department at my high school. Civics is a required class, which means every student at East High School beginning with school year 2020 – 21 will take my survey as an upperclassmen. Each junior and senior class consists of 500-600 students.
What is your project’s global and/or national connection?
I created a website to house the survey along with a process of understanding the political party with which you most closely align and information about how to move forward with becoming an informed voter. It can be accessed no matter where you are in the world. I also emailed and asked NCSL (National Conference of State Legislatures) and FairVote, two national organizations, to ask if they would be interested in promoting my survey/website. Unfortunately, they were unable to make that happen.
What did you learn about yourself?
I learned that I am able to assemble a team, and tackle a project that I truly care about. I also learned the importance of perseverance. There were times when I felt like my project was at a dead end. I am so glad that I didn’t give up. It is an unbelievable accomplishment to finish your Gold Award; I am so proud! I have gained the confidence to ask people for help. I have always wanted to prove to people that I can do anything on my own. Yet, the reality with a big project like this, is that you can’t do it on your own, and your team is there to help you every step of the way.
How will earning your Gold Award impact you in the future?
Earning my Gold Award will give me a leg up against other candidates when I am applying for college scholarships. My Gold Award is an accumulation of everything that I have learned and done as a Girl Scout over the last 12 years. I now am part of a prestigious club of Gold Award Girl Scouts, which I will be able to put on my resumé.
Why do you feel the Gold Award was an important part of your Girl Scout experience?
I have been thinking about earning my Gold Award since I was 11-years-old. My troop emphasized the importance of earning higher awards, and so while I didn’t know if it was possible, I always wanted to earn my Gold Award and have a legacy of my years as a Girl Scout. Completing my Gold Award put all the skills that Girl Scouts has taught me into action. Every girl has learned how to dream big, be a leader, and persevere through their time in Girl Scouts, and earning a Gold Award uses that knowledge.
How did earning your Gold Award help you become a G.I.R.L. (go-getter, innovator, risk-taker, leader)?
Earning my Gold Award helped me become a go-getter because I saw a surplus of uninformed voters among my peers and I successfully found a solution. I was also an innovator because with the help of my team, I created an original survey for the public to use.
**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 firstname.lastname@example.org.