Boy Scout Merit Badge University
Back in 1990, Rotarians Max Getts, Shelly Godkin, Ron Stoops and Tim McCandless, among others, met to discuss the idea of organizing a “Merit Badge University” for Boy Scouts in the local Longs Peaks Peak Council.
The idea was to have Rotarians representing several vocations act as instructors for the corresponding merit badges so the Scouts could experience someone actually in the career for the badge they were trying to obtain. This might influence them to pursue that career. (i.e. Architecture, Dentistry, Aviation, etc.) while helping Scouts who might otherwise find it very difficult to find counselors for their required Merit Badges. Emphasis was placed on the badges required for Star, Life and Eagle ranks. For the very first Merit Badge University (MBU), approximately 200 Scouts from the region participated.
MBU is now held each year in January (two Saturday mornings of the month) at Front Range Community College and, every year, between 500 and 600 Scouts participate! Over 20 Merit Badge courses are offered and the majority of the instructors are members of the Rotary Club of Fort Collins.