Feature photo, practicing their skills in MMA's field house, Scouts earned their archery merit badge in a class taught by JR Wiley and Eric Kreutz.
Missouri Military Academy (MMA) hosted its annual Boy Scouts of America Merit Badge University March 24-26, 2023. Approximately 300 Scouts, leaders and family members from Missouri, Texas, Iowa, Arkansas and Illinois attended the Great Rivers Council Spring Breakout event at MMA’s Mexico, Missouri campus.
During the annual MMA Merit Badge University, Scouts — including cadets of MMA’s Boy Scout Troop 1889 — complete badges, supported by MMA staff and faculty and local/regional Scout volunteers. Scouts engage in events across MMA’s 288-acre campus to earn the badges, from the rappel tower to the Olympic-sized pool to the rifle range to the stables. This year, approximately 70 Scouts camped out on the campus as part of the experience.
"Our Scouting program is an important part of our 360° Education and providing opportunities for our cadets' growth, supporting their interests, interacting with fellow Scouts and building their personal confidence," said MMA President Brigadier General Richard V. Geraci, USA (Ret). "I am especially proud of the MMA staff and faculty who volunteered their personal time to support this important annual event for our cadets and visiting Scouts.”
Above, MMA faculty member and coach Trevonne Smith greets Scouts during the opening ceremony.
The MMA Color Guard presented the colors for the pledge of allegiance during the opening ceremony in the Centennial Gym.
MMA Cadet Mason Brooks, a high school sophomore from Mason, Texas, led attendees in the Scout Law and Scout Oath.
Above, MMA Deputy Commandant for Support and Quartermaster Rick Dehlinger, MMA Class of 1993, instructs Scouts on the game of golf in the field house. Dehlinger previously served as Scoutmaster for MMA's Troop 1889 and was instrumental in restarting the Scouting program at MMA.
Merit badge classes included Archery, American Business, Climbing, Citizenship in this World, Horsemanship, Swimming, Rifle Shooting, Fishing, and more.
MMA cadets also volunteered to support the event, including Cadets Kamil Sanchez De Ovando Pérez from Mexico, Cyprian Mutinyu from Uganda, Seydina Issa Diop from Senegal, and Temuulen Manlai from Mongolia who served as guest speakers in the American Cultures merit badge class. These cadets shared insight into the cultures and customs of their home countries.
Above, MMA faculty member Chris Schafer helps Scouts earn their American Cultures merit badge.
Above, Scouts learned about rifle shooting in the MMA rifle range.
Above, Scouts earned their swimming badges in MMA's Olympic-sized pool, with instruction from MMA swim coach Matthias McManus.
Above, volunteer Phil Silverman helps Scouts earn their Citizenship in the World badge.
About MMA Scout Troop 1889
For more than 100 years, both Missouri Military Academy (MMA) and Boy Scouts of America (BSA) have been helping young men reach their full potential through a curriculum of academic and leadership skills and by imparting values of duty, honor and selfless service.
MMA cadets are invited to join the Academy’s BSA Troop 1889 (named in honor of the year of MMA’s founding) for fun and challenging experiences that will enhance their positive character development and leadership skills. MMA’s unique environment – both campus and culture – provides the optimal structure, consistency, and opportunities to advance as a Scout, while enhancing the MMA brotherhood experience.
Progress within Scouts may also have a positive impact on a cadet’s rank advancement within the corps. The commandant’s office is notified of merit badges earned and Scout advancement. Cadets may utilize their Scout and MMA experiences to graduate as an MMA Corps of Cadets leader and obtain Eagle Scout rank.
MMA Vice President of Institutional Advancement Rob Silbaugh is the Troop 1889 Scoutmaster. For more information about MMA’s Troop 1889, please contact Silbaugh at Robert.Silbaugh@MissouriMilitaryAcademy.com.