PV seniors complete Eagle Scout projects


Thomas Guzzo

The Eagle Scout Project is Located behind the St. John Baptist Church. PV seniors Matthew Killian and Karl Hauck and junior Quinn Arcaro discuss the impact that Eagle Scouts have on their lives.

For Pascack Valley senior Matthew Killian, Boy Scouts is not just about receiving badges and collecting items for food drives. According to Killian, Boy Scouts is something that equips an individual with life skills. His journey started back in kindergarten as a Cub Scout. Years later, Killian has earned the rank of an Eagle Scout.

To become an Eagle Scout, Boy Scouts must pass specific tests, earn merit badges, and complete an Eagle project. The project is the opportunity for a Boy Scout to demonstrate leadership skills while also benefiting his community. The Eagle Scout also needs to be active in his troop and demonstrate that he lives by the principles of the Scout Oath and Law in his daily life. He can do this by going to meetings and outings, such as camping.

For Killian’s Eagle Scout project, he decided to build a courtyard in the back of St. John Baptist Church in Hillsdale. He built a 120-foot arch and pathway, planted five trees surrounded by mulch and gravel, and added a bench and stepping stones.

“I’m proud of it,” Killian said. “It was a nice feeling to look back at this project, and see all of my hard work that has helped the community in some way.”

It was a nice feeling to look back at this project and see all of my hard work that has helped the community in some way.”

— Matthew Killian

PV senior Karl Hauck also completed an Eagle Scout project. When Hauck heard that the food pantry in River Vale needed some improvements, he decided to turn that into a project.

“I saw what needed to be done and I did it,” Hauck said. “Previously, there was a carpet floor in the pantry, so I put together a pergo floor over that, as well as taking out all of the shelves there. I also re-dated and reorganized all of the food.”

Junior Quinn Arcaro, another Eagle Scout, decided to take on a project as well. He renovated the Sapienza Gardens in the woods behind Pascack Valley by laying down 2,000 feet of wood chips and 50 tons of rock, putting up a welcome sign, building two benches, and planting flowers.

“I went through there almost every day,” Arcaro said. “I just got tired of walking through mud, so I decided to start my project and I kept on adding on different components to this area. That’s what made me think of the idea.”

According to the scouts, the commitment to community and commitment to self are major themes in the Eagle Scout journey.

“I love the fact that it feels like a major sense of a community,” Killian said. “Also, amazing people such as JFK or Neil Armstrong share that same honor that you have been granted which is pretty cool, because we are part of a great community.”

Many scouts believe that the journey from a Boy Scout to an Eagle Scout has helped them recognize problems in their community.

“Boy scouts is mainly about nature and knowing the world around you, and understanding the problems in it so you can overcome them, ” Arcaro said.

For many scouts, being involved has also helped them to grow as citizens.

“During scouting you pretty much grow into a mature adult,” Killian said. “In doing that, you need to take on a lot of responsibility that is being put in your hands. By completing the task, you gain more confidence in yourself. When I was working on the project, I realized it was another way of learning important life skills.”  

Boy scouts is about finding who you are, and your place in the world, while leaving your mark to make your community a better place.”

— Matthew Killian

Additionally, Hauck believes that being an Eagle Scout can help in the future when planning to get a job since it shows dedication into improving the community.

“Boy scouts is about finding who you are, and your place in the world, while leaving your mark to make your community a better place,” Killian said.