Girl Scout University: Planning, Execution, and Turnout

On Saturday, April 14, 87 Girl Scouts of all ages made the trip to the University of Denver to earn badges at an event put on by Alpha Phi Omega (APO), a community service fraternity on campus. This event, named Girl Scout University, was started three years ago by Alpha Phi Omega, and has been a big hit ever since!

This year, 18 members of APO and six expert volunteers taught a variety of badges for Cadettes, Juniors, and Brownies, ranging from First Aid all the way to fun badges, including Social Butterfly, Jewelry, and Dancing.

Alex Solorio, member of Alpha Phi Omega, teaches a badge to Junior Girl Scouts.

Junior member of APO and Girl Scout University Chair, Rachel Pierstorff, took on the intense planning and immense amount of work required for planning this big event.

“So much goes into it, including securing the location, finalizing a date, picking out which badges to run, setting up leader training, working with Girl Scouts of Colorado to follow proper procedures, getting the right type and quantity of supplies for each badge, ordering the actual badges, working within a budget, [and much more],” she said.

A Girl Scout takes a photo for her photography badge class.

However, this long list of endless responsibilities that Pierstorff put into planning Girl Scout University did not stop her from making this event a success. To her, being the Girl Scout University Chair was the perfect fit, and a meaningful one at that.

“I was super excited to learn about the GSU position, because it would work with my schedule and allow me to contribute to APO in a meaningful way,” she said. “With planning such a large event, I felt like I would really be able to make use of my organizational and detail-oriented skills.”

The event for the volunteers kicked off at the early hour of seven o’clock; despite this, everyone was extremely excited and prepared to make a difference in the lives of the young Girl Scouts coming their way.

Girl Scouts draw in their badge class.

“I’m very pleased with how the event went. I was overjoyed with how well all the volunteers led their badge sessions, were flexible with changes or unexpected circumstances, and most of all, were enthusiastic while hanging out with energetic young girls for the better part of a day,” Pierstorff said.

The parents and scout leaders of the Girl Scouts also noticed how hardworking and upbeat the volunteers were and were also very pleased with how Girl Scout University went. The third annual Girl Scout University certainly does not mark the final one to come DU’s way, and Pierstroff hopes the event will only continue to grow in future years.

“I’d love for the event to grow even more in the future, as I got tons of interested people asking to be registered after sessions filled up,” she said.

Max Pivonka, member of Alpha Phi Omega, makes rock candy with Girl Scouts in his badge class.

Pierstroff and all of the volunteers’ hard work and dedication paid off, and the event ran seamlessly. 87 young Girl Scouts got the amazing opportunity to receive either one or two badges, and their eyes lit up with excitement once they completed a course and received their badge. It's this excitement that makes putting on this event even more worth it.

Huge props to Pierstroff and all of the Alpha Phi Omega and expert volunteers for making such an amazing event possible!