Absolutely. When properly configured, a Sea Scout Ship is a great morale and program boost to any Troop. Because Sea Scouting largely focuses on a different group of young people than a Boy Scout Troop does, the potential to have many more people involved in the programs exist. The goal is to be able to offer the Scouting program to more young people and not to take members from one group or another.
When a Ship is properly established, young men and women organize themselves with the help of adults and design a program that interests them and will keep them involved. It is simple reality that a student who is a junior or senior will be more comfortable at a meeting where the youngest members are in ninth grade rather than sixth. Clearly he or she does not consider sixth graders his peers nor should he be expected to. The foundations of Sea Scouting are adventure, to hold the interest of young adults, and service, to develop leadership skills, teaching ability, and citizenship. Sea Scout Ship members are encouraged to work closely with the Troop attending functions, providing leadership and instruction, and holding key leadership positions in the Troop. Scouts will continue their advancement with the Troop through Eagle and also be eligible to earn Sea Scout awards and recognition. Some of the unseen benefits of a Sea Scout Ship associated with a Troop is the excitement and anticipation that it builds in the younger Scouts. It is a great way to not only provide a program for older youth but also to keep younger Scouts involved as they see what lies ahead in their Scouting future. Sea Scout Ships do not steal boys from Boy Scout Troops. Boys who leave a Troop to join a Sea Scout Ship most likely would not have remained active for very much longer in the Troop anyway. It is much more accurate to say that Sea Scouting saves boys rather than steals them.
There are only so many leadership positions in a Troop, and once those are filled, older Scouts often feel like they have no purpose being there. When high school age young people have a program of their own, it actually allows for a much larger pool of potential teachers and leaders from which the Troop can pull.
In conclusion, Sea Scout Ships are an asset to a Boy Scout Troop. They provide enhanced programming, leadership, and instructional support. Sea Scout Ships fill a void of programming for high school age youth and give younger Scouts a level of participation to aspire to. The youth of York-Adams Area Council deserve the opportunity to learn and develop leadership skill in the context of a Sea Scout Ship.
Contributed by Justin Amsler, York Imperial District Executive, York-Adams Area Council, B.S.A.
Sea Scouting is surprisingly inexpensive. Because the uniforms are often Navy surplus or even current Navy issue, they are quite affordable. In Ship 25, we can outfit a new Sea Scout with a Sea Scout Manual, a set of Working Blues, and a set of Dress Blues for less than $150.00 total, including all insignia. If the Sea Scout already has a set of plain black shoes and socks, the total cost is even less, approximately $130.00. Activity fees for events such as the Nygard Regatta are less than $40 for an entire four-day weekend including all meals. The activity fee for the NE Region Sea Scout Sailing Championships at the Coast Guard Academy is about $31 for three days including meals.
Yes, as long as you are male and have earned the First Class rank in your Boy Scout Troop before joining Sea Scouts. Ship 25 recognizes the enormous importance of achieving the rank of Eagle Scout and does everything possible to encourage male Sea Scouts who have started advancement towards Eagle to continue that progress while a Sea Scout. Many boys who join Ship 25 continue to remain active in their Boy Scout Troops. Leadership positions in the Ship can be used for advancement purposes in the Troop. Even those Scouts who chose not to remain active in their old Troop can continue to work on their Eagle wholly within the confines of the Ship provided they were First Class or higher when they left their Troop.
DO I NEED PRIOR SCOUTING EXPERIENCE TO BE A SEA SCOUT?
No. While prior experience as a Boy Scout or a Girl Scout will certainly be helpful, it is certainly not required. Ship 25 is happy to have you join us regardless of whether or not you have previously been a Scout.
Sea Scout uniforms are based on the traditional uniforms of the sea services, in particular the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Coast Guard. Those services use very basic uniforms, believing that "less is more", compared to the U.S. Army and the Boy Scouts who tend to provide some insignia recognition for every single accomplishment.
Certainly not. While many Sea Scouts go on to professions related to the sea and maritime activities, many others do not. All adults, however, who have been Sea Scouts in their youth almost unanimously agree that their Sea Scouting experiences have been valuable preparation for adult life. For those Sea Scouts who do decide to pursue their interest in the sea, it should be noted that both the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Coast Guard provide for pay grade advancement immediately upon enlistment for former Sea Scouts. Sea Scouts who have achieved the Sea Scout Able rank can enlist in the Coast Guard as Seaman Apprentices (E-2), and Sea Scout Quartermasters can enlist as Coast Guard Seamen (E-3). Click here to see the details. (Note: This is an Adobe Acrobat file (94 k). If you do not have an Acrobat reader, click here to download a free copy.
This page is from the website of SSS YORKSHIRE - Sea Scout Ship 25, York, PA, USA - http://ship25bsa.org