Update: Michael achieved Eagle Scout in February 2015. He’s demonstrating the autism spectrum doesn’t stop a Scout from being exceptional. In fact, his experience with autism is what inspired his service project. Read on to learn about the project that helped Eagle Scout Michael soar.
Seven percent of Boy Scouts earn Eagle Scout rank, and Michael W. hopes to beat the odds – not those accompanying autism spectrum disorder. He’s already accomplished that.
As a 16-year-old Boy Scout on his high school’s track and field team, marching band, and ROTC, Michael’s extracurricular involvement is impressive for any student. Now Michael is en route to achieve even more.
On Feb. 19, 2015, Michael will go before the Eagle Scout board of review to present his service project video: “Autism Awareness”.
Watch his video or read the dozens of inspired comments to realize autism isn’t holding Michael back from joining the prestigious ranks of Eagles Scouts. In the 13-minute video, he aims to educate and encourage parents of children with autism spectrum disorders.
“We’re trying to send them a message of hope – that parents of recently diagnosed children will be able to get a head start on education and lead a better life,” Michael said in an interview with NBC WKYC.
With 45 merit badges (more than double the 21 needed to achieve Eagle Scout), Michael is living the message he hopes parents will take away from his project: “Your child will be happy. He will have friends, and he’ll be able to work and be a part of the community,” as Michael’s mother Judy put it to WKYC.
Striving to Soar
As Michael’s video recounts famed achievers believed to have autism, one wonders which other ground-breakers will join this list. In the world of Scouting, Michael certainly qualifies. But for now, he’s focused on becoming an Eagle Scout, going to college, and owning a business.