Thursday, May 13, 2021

Oxford Freshman Earns Eagle Scout With 101 Merit Badges

Keerthin Karthikeyan, a freshman at Oxford High School has earned the rank of Eagle Scout.
Photo provided by the OSD

Keerthin Karthikeyan, a freshman at Oxford High School has earned the rank of Eagle Scout, the highest rank given by the Boy Scouts of America. Karthikeyan is a member of Troop 45 of the First Presbyterian Church in Oxford.

Eagle Scout is achieved by obtaining 21 merit badges; Karthikeyan has earned 101 badges – the highest in Troop 45. To obtain Eagle Scout, scouts must demonstrate the Scout Spirit by being leaders in their troop.

“For some, scouting may stop, but because it has been such a big part of my life, I find it hard to let go,” Karthikeyan said.

Now that Karthikeyan is an Eagle Scout, he is able to help an assistant scoutmaster. He is able to help the scouts and campouts as a leader.

Scouts must create and fully command a service project to obtain the highest rank. In conjunction with the Oxford Police Department, Karthikeyan created the “American Flag Retirement Dropbox” for proper and safely retire old, worn-out flags. From the dropbox, the flags are delivered to the Oxford Fire Department for a flag retirement ceremony where flags are solemnly and respectfully cut and burned.

In addition to scouts, Karthikeyan has stood out among Oxford students as a top spelling bee contender for several years. In 2019, Karthikeyan won a Silver Medal at the Genius Olympiad International Project Competition in New York City, with his project “Styro-Carbon: An Effective Approach to Recycle Styrofoam.”

College admissions and scholarship decisions can be highly influenced by an Eagle Scout status. An advantage that Karthikeyan is looking forward to in a few years.

Story by Aly Card, OSD Communications Intern