Local Scout Accepted to NESA World Explorer Program
Dedicated Scouts get to do a lot of cool and adventurous things in their lifetime. Benjamin Alva of Eagan is getting to do something cool, adventurous, and rare! We’re not talking about a High Adventure trip to Philmont or Florida Sea Base (although he’s done those, too). Benjamin has been accepted into the NESA (National Eagle Scout Association) World Explorers Program!
This Eagle Scout program lets Scouts see and study the world around them, the entire world. Since launching in 2012, only 50 Eagle Scouts have earned the distinction of being called a NESA World Explorer, and now Benjamin joins those ranks.
It wasn’t an easy task. Entry is open to ALL Eagle Scouts 18 and older, and only required a 250-word essay. There was plenty of competition but Benjamin was selected to be one of 100 finalists.
“I don’t even want to guess how many people entered,” Benjamin said. “But the next step was creating a video, exactly three minutes long.”
The video had to show why he was a qualified candidate. From that capable group, Ben was selected to be one of 16 Eagle Scouts to be a World Explorer. In his case, he’ll be heading to Yellowstone National Park for the NASA Astrobiologist program studying the bio-signatures of extremophiles.
Those studies could help scientists understand what life could have been like in ancient Martian and Earth environments.
“I’ve always been interested in bio-engineering and terrestrial engineering,” Benjamin said.
He’ll be leaving for Yellowstone this June, and stay for two-weeks. This fall, he’ll continue his studies at the University of Minnesota where he’s majoring in Genetics, Cell Biology and Development with Minors in Biochemistry and Business Management. Benjamin was a member of Troop 171.