Since 1954, We Energies has hosted the annual Merit Badge Clinic for Boy Scouts. This year’s event took place on Saturday, Dec. 9, in the We Energies Public Service Building Auditorium. The clinic brought together approximately 20 We Energies volunteers to help nearly 70 Boy Scouts ages 12 to 17 earn electricity merit badges.
We Energies also welcomed the Troops of St. George as special guests to observe the clinic.
Earning the merit badge involves taking a written test on electrical safety and terms, and demonstrating knowledge of practical skills. The Scouts study information on electricity and conduct safety audits of their homes before the clinic. They also wire circuits with lights or buzzers or build electric motors as part of independent projects. The clinic brings in energy experts to coach them the rest of the way.
We Energies employee Ted Sniegowski has volunteered at the event for over a decade and served as chairperson the past seven years. He is thankful for all the volunteers who have kept this important tradition of service alive and well. “For 64 years, We Energies volunteers have helped hundreds if not thousands of Scouts earn this coveted merit badge,” he said.
Those sentiments are echoed by Andrew Hardin with the Three Harbors Council, Boy Scouts of America based out of Milwaukee. “Since 1954, thousands of Scouts have learned the impact that electricity has on their everyday lives from experts at We Energies. This merit badge clinic has such a long history that fathers who attended the clinic as Boy Scouts in years past are now taking their Scout-age sons to the same clinic. Thanks to We Energies staff and retirees who volunteer to put on a successful event for the Boy Scouts!”
Certainly technology has changed since the clinic began in 1954, but its basis remains the same. Some families have had three generations of Scouts attend the clinic. Retired employees return to volunteer and keep the tradition going. A few volunteers have even helped at the clinic for more than 40 consecutive years.