Four men, three black and one white, smiling at the camera. They are holding a sign that says 'Go Dawgs'

(From left) Wendell Williams, SIU Carbondale associate chancellor of enrollment management; Martez Moore, director of field service for Greater St. Louis Area Council of Scouts BSA; Austin A. Lane, SIU Chancellor, and David Sikes, director of field services/COO for Lincoln Heritage Council Scouts BSA, celebrate their new partnership.

April 27, 2022

SIU Carbondale, Scouts BSA’s pact opens opportunities for youths in 5 states

CARBONDALE, Ill. — An agreement between Southern Illinois University Carbondale and the Scouts BSA Greater St. Louis Area Council and Lincoln Heritage Council will provide educational possibilities for Scouts in five states and encourage them to pursue STEM careers. 

On Tuesday, April 26, Austin A. Lane, chancellor of SIU Carbondale; Martez Moore, director of field service of the Greater St. Louis Area Council, and David Sikes, director of field services/COO of the Lincoln Heritage Council, signed a memorandum of agreement (MOA). The pact also includes the option for high school age BSA members to participate in a career day, potential scholarships for Scouts who qualify and supporting BSA’s efforts to employ SIU students and alumni.

The MOA fits well with SIU Carbondale’s Imagine 2030 strategic plan, which includes pillars to foster student success and build partnerships, Lane said. 

“We are excited to partner with St. Louis Area Council and Lincoln Heritage Council and to encourage Scouts to imagine themselves pursuing a college education at a first-rate doctoral research university and making an impact after they graduate, particularly in STEM fields,” he said. “With this agreement, we can plant the seed early and provide opportunities that will pay off in the long term.” 

The Greater St. Louis Area Council served more than 24,000 youths last year. More than 2,700 participated in STEM events.

“We are grateful to enhance our partnership with SIU Carbondale, including the STEM opportunities,” Moore said. “This will be a game-changer for our Scouts. On a personal note, I decided to go to college as a result of participating in a Scouting event held on a college campus. A college education truly changes lives. This partnership gives us the opportunity to place Scouts on a college campus early in their lives.”

Lincoln Heritage Council comprises 64 counties in Kentucky, Illinois, Indiana and Tennessee.

“We are always looking for collaborative efforts with other organizations,” Sikes said. “This partnership will strengthen leadership skills and development for Scouts and SIU students.”

This is SIU’s sixth agreement since 2021 with a school district or youth organization. Other recent partners include Carbondale Elementary School District No. 95, Girls Inc. of St. Louis, East St. Louis School District 189, Cahokia Unit School District No. 187 and Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois.