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‘Diligent and hard-working’: 16-year-old student will be training Boy Scouts

Courtesy Photo
Courtesy Photo

Walking in the midst of those who are older, Emily Goelzer, 16, doesn’t feel an age gap.

For her, age is only a number.

Goelzer doesn’t hesitate to share her ambitious dreams. Determination resonates in every word as she states that one day she will become president of the United States. Only after being a United Nations ambassador and a member of Congress.

“My name means hard worker and diligent,” said Goelzer. “That’s who I am. God made me hard-working. He gave me this drive for working hard and striving after excellence. That’s honestly a God-given gift.”

Goelzer started school a year younger than most, and she combined her junior and senior year of high school.    Her academic progress was always at an accelerated rate, resulting in her attending college much earlier than normal.

“I had no idea [I’d] be going to college at 16,” said Goelzer. “It was a shocker. My mom didn’t want to let go, but she knew that God wanted me here this year for a reason.”

At 14 she joined the Boy Scouts Venturing Program. The program influenced Goelzer’s life through a series of leadership and communication skills making her the owner of two medals. It was her participation in Boy Scouts that prepared her for an early college experience.

“It was through Boy Scouts that I got my drive for  creating a vision and going after it; setting goals,” said Goelzer.

After being in the program for two years, Goelzer’s outstanding leadership abilities gave her the unexpected opportunity to train adult scout leaders in the Interamerican Leadership Training (ILT) held in Houston this September.

“Deep down inside, I really wanted to be on staff, but I told no one,” said Goelzer. “I didn’t tell my parents, I didn’t tell my brothers, much less the youth leader of this course. They accepted me as staff. That was a good surprise.”

While most girls celebrate their sweet sixteen, Goelzer is getting ready to train alongside 14 international scout leaders from the American continent. Fellow ILT staff member and Eagle Scout James Britt said Emily is prepared for the challenge despite her young age.

“[Emily’s] age is not necessarily what we would consider normal,” said Britt. “She will quite possibly be the youngest in the training, as well as in the course; that means participants too.”

Goelzer has come a long way, and college is one more step in the process of achieving her dreams. Her character honors her boy scout nickname—“Falcon.”

“[The nickname means] I soar high. I like the nickname and the meaning behind it. It empowers me to do more, to keep soaring high, to soar higher and to bring others up with me,”said Goelzer.

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