Thursday, February 27, 2014

Williamson Trade School, Boy Scouts Team Up for Career and Skill Opportunities

#delco #mediapa #boyscouts
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                          Contact:  Nick Nowak
Thursday, February 27, 2014                                                       484-466-6425

Williamson Trade School, Boy Scouts Team Up for Career and Skill Opportunities

Media, Pa. – The Cradle of Liberty Council of the Boy Scouts of America held their inaugural Merit Badge College at Williamson Free School of Mechanical Trades in Media, this past Saturday. The day-long event offered 280 Scouts the opportunity to begin work on four merit badges. Many will complete their badges on the second day of the event on March 15. The Scouts chose from 42 merit badges, many related to STEM topics, including computers, robotics, engineering, and chess. The Scouts came from Delaware, Montgomery, and Philadelphia Counties.

The badges were taught by Scouting volunteers, each of whom had a background in their topic.  One of these counselors was John Rex (7W5), of Drexel Hill, who studied Power Plant Technology at Williamson, instructed the Energy Merit Badge for the Scouts.  “Williamson is a great organization, and I think it’s only right for me to pass on the knowledge to these Scouts that I learned here,” Rex said. (picture)

Steve Kelly, Williamson Trustee and Cradle of Liberty Council Board Vice President, brought the event to Williamson. He said the plans had been underway for a while, and when it came time to select a location Williamson was a good choice and a natural fit, he said.

Williamson President Michael Rounds was on hand to tell the Scouts about Williamson’s mission and to interact with participants. Also on hand were Matt Sharkus 1W5 and Phil Vecchiolli 1W6, both Eagle Scouts, who escorted Scouts to their classrooms and helped out wherever needed.  (picture)

About Williamson:
The Williamson Free School of Mechanical Trades is one of the last of its kind in the nation, a private, post secondary, residential institution of higher education that charges no tuition, room or board. It offers specialized technology degree programs with emphasis on carpentry, masonry, horticulture, landscaping and turf management, machine tool, paint and coatings, and power plant. There are two diploma programs in carpentry and masonry, as well. The school has a national reputation for producing sought-after craftsmen. For more information on the school, visit
The Cradle of Liberty Council Boy Scouts of America (COLBSA) serves Philadelphia, Delaware, and Montgomery Counties, providing programs for nearly 17,000 youth in over 500 units. In the City of Philadelphia, the Council serves nearly 5,000 youth through its traditional and outreach programs. Additionally, through the Exploring program, young men and women are provided with internships and exposed to work based opportunities to help them better prepare for college and become a successful member of the work force. For more information visit: or to join scouting programs in your area visit

About the Boy Scouts of America Merit Badge Program:
The Boy Scouts of America offer more than 130 different merit badges for Scouts to complete, including 35 on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) related topics.  There is more to merit badges  than an introduction to lifetime hobbies, or the inspiration to pursue a career—though these invaluable results occur regularly. The process provides several learning experiences. It gives a Scout the confidence achieved through overcoming obstacles. Social skills improve. Self-reliance develops. Examples are set and followed. And fields of study and interest are explored beyond the limits of the school classroom.

Photo Captions:

MB College 1: Pictured in front of the Main Building are (from left to right): President Michael Rounds, Eagle Scouts and Williamson students Phil Vecchiolli and Matt Sharkus, Steve Kelly, and Steve Perrone, event chairman.

MB College 2: Pictured outside the Strine Learning Center, Scouts working on Space Exploration Merit Badge work on models used to complete badge requirements

MB College 3: Williamson Alum and Merit Badge Counselor John Rex passes on his knowledge to Scouts in the Energy Merit Badge class.

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