Log In

Reset Password

Two Newtown Girl Scouts Receive Gold Awards



Text Size

Two Newtown Girl Scouts

Receive Gold Awards

Sasha Mastrocinque and Paula Wickman were two of nine young women from the 15 Fairfield County towns and cities within The Girl Scout Council of Southwestern Connecticut recently honored with their Gold Award.

The Gold Award is the highest achievement in Girl Scouting and is comparable to the Eagle Scout Award for Boy Scouts. Before a Senior Girl Scout (age 14 to 17 or grade 9 to 12) can begin her final Gold Award project, she must focus high ideals and leadership, organizational and time-management skills learned in Girl Scouting to fulfill four major requirements.

Those requirements include earning four Interest Project Patches that teach new skills and take 15 to 20 hours each to complete; earning the Career Exploration Pin that fosters awareness of careers by planning a career fair, participating in an internship, or starting a business; earning the Senior Girl Scout Leadership Award through at least 30 hours of leadership experience in school, religious, Girl Scout, or community activities; and earning the five-part Senior Girl Scout Challenge that includes projects on self-development, relating to others, and developing values, plus a 15-hour service project and a project to help others learn about Girl Scouting.

Having completed those basic requirements, a girl must then plan and implement an approved project that satisfies an expressed need in the community and that requires at least 50 hours of work by the girl herself. A pre-Gold Award interview, training, liaison with a project advisor/consultant, written project documentation, and subsequent panel interview are also required. Only one percent of all Girl Scouts each year earn this prestigious award.

For her Gold Award, Sasha Mastrocinque helped people who exercise on roadways increase their safety and informed other people how to maximize their benefit from exercising.

Sasha made a pamphlet that explained how many calories would be burned with different exercise activities, including, running, walking and biking. The pamphlet also included suggestions for how to stay safe and visible at different times of day.

To implement one of these suggestions, she made identification cards for people which included their name, blood type, allergies, and emergency contact information. The ID cards were laminated and attached with a clip so they can be worn at all times.

“I was very happy to see people respond so well to my idea, and that made things go smoothly,” remarked Sasha. Now a college student, Sasha is currently continuing her work with the Girl Scouts by co-leading a Daisy troop.

Newtown High School Senior Paula Wickman trained her adopted purebred bloodhound Fergus to be a search-and-rescue dog for her Gold Award service project. Paula attended monthly business meetings, conducted specific woodland and water work with Fergus, as well as attended educational meetings covering necessary criteria (survival training, man-tracking skills, gear necessary for field work, and requirements to be on call).

“Search and rescue dogs are currently an underutilized resource when it comes to locating a lost and/or missing person, especially drowning victims,” explained Paula. “Search dogs can save hundreds of manpower hours when properly utilized and reduce the risk to rescuers as well as divers.”

Fergus is now an active part of two search-and-rescue teams.

Paula has brought awareness to her community and educated the public about the need and service offered by a well-trained search-and-rescue dog through personal demonstrations and public appearances over the past year.

The Girl Scout Council of Southwestern Connecticut is very proud of these exceptional leaders and the work they have done to see a need in the community and answer it. These girls are truly acting out the Girl Scout aim to “make the world a better place.”

Comments are open. Be civil.

Leave a Reply