Best of the Week 2018-2019: Holy Cross Values


James Black '21, a member of the Boy Scout Troop 334 in Avon Lake, has been working since December on his Eagle Scout project called the "Double Eagle Award." James' project includes creating an online database through Blackboard that will allow students to access an entire list of St. Ed's alumni who are also Eagle Scouts as well as a wall plaque that will be displayed at St. Edward High School and feature nameplates honoring each Double Eagle. Thanks to Wrestling Coach Greg Urbas (photographed with James above), who suggested the idea for the "Double Eagle Award," James has recruited help from St. Ed's Office of Institutional Advancement to cross-reference alumni records with the Ohio Eagle Scout database to find all Edsmen, past and present, who have achieved Eagle Scout status. As of now, James has compiled a list of 180 Double Eagles and is sure the number will grow by the time he completes his project by the end of 2019.

"My Eagle Scout project is pretty unique because it holds a lot of meaning and will be an ongoing project for years to come. I've received a lot of responses from alums who agree that a project honoring our Double Eagles is something we need to do," says James. "The Double Eagle Award, which also ties into my sophomore Theology project, focuses on two of our Holy Cross pillars, Servant Leadership and Relationships. The Double Eagle Award will meet our community's need to properly honor those Edsmen who are also Eagle Scouts and will provide a means to track and connect with those 180+ alumni members. By reaching out to the alumni directly, I've been able to form relationships with them and get them involved in the overall goal of my project as well." Since James is in the early phase of his project, he hopes to hold a fundraiser soon to help pay for the cost of wood, metal and other materials to build the Double Eagle Award plaque himself. Once the project is finished, James also hopes to host an unveiling ceremony of the plaque at St. Ed's, inviting Double Eagle Award alums to see the finished project and to connect with one another in person.

"I've known the Black family for many years and James has been an active wrestler and Boy Scout since his early years. James has assisted many Boy Scouts with their projects working toward earning their Eagle Scout Badge and now it's James' turn," says Coach Urbas. "St. Ed's has not formally honored our graduates who have earned the prestigious title of Eagle Scout. The Boy Scout troops are grouped together in the Lake Erie Council, so when you search an alum, it only indicates the scout's name and troop number, not their high school. James has had quite the task researching all the Eagle Scouts in Northeast Ohio and to verify if they are St. Ed's alums. Similar to how St. Ed's honors the Man of the Year, Phi Beta Kappa award winners and the John Philip Souza Award for top Edsman musician, James will now implement the Double Eagle Award that will honor the many great Eagle Scout leaders of St. Ed's."