Scout with autism earns all 132 badges

20 Sep

I wish there were more details in this story. The story is: Scout with autism earns all 132 badges. With apologies for copying the whole story (it is so short!)

To become an Eagle Scout, the highest achievement in Scouting, a Boy Scout must earn 21 merit badges. Nathan Christensen, 17, a senior at Bingham High in South Jordan, Utah, earned all 132 badges. And what makes his accomplishment even more impressive is that Nathan has autism.

Nate’s mother Sandy said Scouting helped improve his social skills. Nate, who didn’t start speaking until he was 7, started working on earning his badges, from journalism to camping, when he was 11. Six years later he had all 132.

Nate took no shortcuts in getting his badges, even though that was an option for him. He has binders for all of his badges to remind him of his hard work, and to inspire him in the future.

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7 Responses to “Scout with autism earns all 132 badges”

  1. Steve Silberman September 20, 2011 at 02:20 #

    The version of the story I tweeted earlier has a wee bit more detail: http://bit.ly/r5pUJz

  2. Julian Frost September 20, 2011 at 07:01 #

    Great story. Thanks for posting this Sullivan.

  3. ebohlman September 20, 2011 at 12:54 #

    “just happens to be autistic”

    Love it.

  4. MikeMa September 20, 2011 at 14:12 #

    I worked as a scout leader for over a decade and had a couple of boys with a lot of badges on their sashes but nothing like this. Damned impressive feat by this young man. ‘Focused’ might not convey enough of what drives him.

  5. momof12 September 20, 2011 at 19:28 #

    I’m Nate’s mom. He is an amazing kid! He works so hard at everything he does and when he sets a goal, he keeps plugging away until it is accomplished. He is a straight A student and his scouting journey has been recorded by his own hand in 59 one-inch binders. To read more about him, stop by my blog and click on the Autism link. There is also a link to his blog from there…The Art of Autism. Thanks for being so kind to Nate!
    ~Sandy Christensen

    • Sullivan September 20, 2011 at 21:44 #

      Hey Sandy,

      this is such a cool story. Let him know that people who have never met him are mightily impressed. I got to 2nd class (or whatever the level above tenderfoot is). That’s it!

  6. Science Mom September 20, 2011 at 22:58 #

    Hello Ms. Christensen, Congratulations to Nate and to you for all of your patience and encouragement. I love to read stories like this and what a wonderful role model Nate is.

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