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Volunteer Highlights

Mike McMullen

1. Can you tell us about your experience with Girl Scouts of Central & Southern NJ?

My Girl Scout career began when my oldest daughter was in kindergarten, and I stepped in to help out after a troop leader left. I did not realize that helping out at that time would bring me to where I am nine years later. I began with a troop of ten Girl Scout Daisies, and on June 2, 2019, three of those original girls are in the troop of nine that just bridged to Girl Scout Seniors. In addition to being a troop leader, I am the Service Unit Cookie Booth Coordinator and a part of the Service Unit Camp Team. 

 2. Why do you choose to invest your time in Girl Scouts?

I believe that the Girl Scouts offer many great opportunities to girls. I am the father of four very amazing girls that range from 1st-grade to freshman in high school. I am involved in each daughter’s troop as a troop leader, assisting with two other troops, and my youngest is a Juliette Daisy. Girl Scouts helps my daughters and their troop sisters become stronger and more independent. Over the years, the girls have learned very valuable life lessons, whether it be through camping, cooking, or earning badges.

I love that the Girl Scouts are expanding their badge opportunities to include Science, Technology, Engineering, & Math (STEM). As a sixth-grade science teacher in Cinnaminson, I like sharing my teaching experiences with the Girl Scouts as they explore the new badges. I have used cubelets with my daughter’s Brownie troop to help them learn to code and also used them to assist my junior troop with work on their STEM Journey as well. I can also use my background knowledge to help my Daisy earn her own space badge. This past February, my two oldest girls and some of their troop coordinated science demonstrations for the opening of the GS STEM Conference at Camden County Community College. It made me proud to see the girls plan and explain various visual demonstrations to a room packed of Girl Scouts. It was also very exciting to see the audience’s eyes light up and hear the "oohs" and "aahs" as the girls led their demonstration.

3. What impact does volunteering with Girl Scouts have on your life?

Having four girls keeps me very busy. Working with Girl Scouts is fun, and I try to incorporate them into a lot of what I do. I am a very big proponent in giving back to the community. My troop (and daughters) know what it is like to work and volunteer as they help set up many events through Girl Scouts and in the public realm as well. Most of the girls in my troop have to complete service hours for school or church, and they smile when given the task because they usually already have well over the required hours completed before the assignment is even given.

For instance, I am a member of Marlton Elks Lodge #2514. Over the years the Girl Scouts have been involved with the Elks from canned food drives to preparing peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for the needy. Through this connection, my troop (and daughters) take pride during cookie season to collect Girl Scout Cookies to donate to the New Egypt Elks Lodge #2457, who then disperse the cookies the military and, in particular, to the children of military families during their annual military appreciation picnic, an event where my girls have volunteered to help at times. This is a small way the girls can give back to their community and say thank you to those that serve.

4. Can you share your most memorable Girl Scout story with us?

I love camping with the girls. Our Service Unit hosts a weekend camp every other year. The first year I was involved, I ran a pond study station. The girls loved investigating the insects and animals that lived near and in the pond. Over the past few trips, I was able to teach the girls how to cook on a fire, and we made chocolate chip banana boats and most recently cooked with pie irons. The girls loved this opportunity to go outside their comfort zone and try something new.

Last Fall, I took a group of Cadettes to the Crazy Cadette Camporee at Camp Oak Spring. The girls had a fantastic time camping with their friends. The highlight was meal time as each girl was eager to learn what to cook for every meal. They woke up to make pancakes and sausage, then made homemade quesadillas for lunch, and I think they were the envy of camp as their dinner aroma lingered throughout. They roasted potatoes and corn on the cob on the open fire while they prepared fried chicken! They were very excited to tell their parents about their new exploits and expertise in cooking.