Chandler Girl Scout earns Gold Award - SanTan Sun News SanTan Sun News

Chandler Girl Scout earns Gold Award

October 28th, 2022 SanTan Sun News
Chandler Girl Scout earns Gold Award

By Justin Liggin

As student body president at Hamilton High School, Girl Scout Megan Finder noticed that hardworking classmates often went unrecognized despite their big impact on the school’s community.

To earn the prestigious Gold Award, the highest honor in Girl Scouts, the Hamilton alumna came up with a project and an award of her own to uplift her fellow classmates.

“This project is important to me because I wanted to find a way to advocate for individuals who may not have a healthy school relationship, but still make a difference in their community,” she said.

She developed the Husky Shadow Award to recognize students who work behind the scenes to impact their school community.

To be selected for the award, seniors who fit the criteria are nominated by the security teams that work at the school and interact with students every day.

“These recipients may not be club presidents, team captains, star athletes or academic finalists, but rather students who are persistent and optimistic,” Megan explained. “This unique selection from behind-the-scenes staff members allows the process to become full circle.”

With the project being met with acclaim from classmates, students and staff, it has proven to be a big success and a way to recognize the everyday achievements of students on campus.

“Everyone has their own story and I learned how important it is to put everyone on the same level,” said Megan. “This project was a long process, but so worth it in the end!”

The Husky Shadow Award has since been extended to all six high schools in Chandler Unified School District.

In addition, Megan has also received numerous awards for her Gold Award project including the Sherry Cancino Hands of Service Award from the Chandler Service Club, the Desert Financial Community Service Scholarship, and the Chandler Education Foundation Impact Scholarship.

“My classmates and parents who became aware of this award all unanimously agree that this award is needed, especially in such large district high schools,” Megan said.

“My peers and I are excited to see this program launch fully in the next few years across the district.”

A Girl Scout of 12 years, Megan feels empowered by the organization to make a difference in the lives of others while finding herself – and some lifelong friends – along the way.

“Girl Scouting has been the absolute best experience. I am happy to say I have kept my friends from my kindergarten and first grade troops including my best friend. Having our moms as our troop leaders has made such a difference in my life. They continue to motivate us through all our projects and journeys,” she said.

Megan’s Gold Award also establishes her as a trailblazer in her community and a changemaker whose impact will be felt for years to come.

The Gold Award is not only the most prestigious award in the organization, but it also helps a Girl Scout distinguish herself in the college admissions process, earn scholarships and even enter the military at a higher rank, all while leaving a legacy.

Megan currently attends Barrett, The Honors College at Arizona State University, where she is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in management and sports business, and plans to receive a master’s degree in sports law.