ATTLEBORO — Abby Schwab of BSA Scout Troop 1846 out of LaSalette Shrine on Park Street is making history as one of three members of the Narragansett Council’s first female Eagle Scout class.
Eagle Scout is the highest rank in BSA Scouts. Only about 6 percent of Scouts attain it.
Schwab, 18, is the daughter of Jim and Erin Schwab of Crescent Road in Pawtucket.
Her father is the troop’s scoutmaster.
The three young women are among only a handful nationwide who will make up the inaugural class of female Eagle Scouts, according to a council press release.
The other two are Regina Collura of Westport’s Troop 2019 and Morgan Nathan of Warwick, R.I.’s Troop 77.
While co-ed scouting programs have existed for some time, BSA Scouts first admitted girls on Feb. 1, 2018 and that’s when Schwab joined, earning her Eagle badge in under three years.
“Earning the rank of Eagle Scout takes hard work and perseverance, and we are honored to recognize Abby, Regina and Morgan for this significant accomplishment,” Tim McCandless, Narragansett Council, Boy Scouts of America CEO said in an emailed press release.
Schwab said she’s proud of her accomplishment.
“I grew up in a Scouting family and was introduced to the outdoor adventure activities of Scouting at a young age,” she said. “This has been an amazing journey and I am so proud to be able to pave the way for other female Scouts.”
To earn the Eagle Scout badge, an individual has to take on leadership roles within their troop and their community; earn a minimum of 21 merit badges covering a broad range of topics including first aid and safety, civics, business and the environment; and research, organize and complete a large-scale community service project.
Schwab’s Eagle Scout project involved preserving the pollinating bee population, which is endangered.
Working with the Pawtucket Parks and Recreation Department, she constructed “bee hotels” that were installed at Slater Park and housed bee populations during the spring and summer.
Young women have been part of Scouting for decades in co-ed programs offered by the Boy Scouts of America, including Sea Scouts, Venturing, Exploring and STEM Scouts.
Schwab, a graduate of East Providence High School who is now studying forensic science at the University of New Haven in Connecticut, said the path to the Eagle Scout badge enhanced her communication and leadership skills.
“I encourage other young ladies from the ages of 11 to 18 to get involved,” she said.
The Scout “Court of Honor,” at which she will receive the Eagle Badge, has yet to be scheduled.