Published On: 11/24/2015

Mining in Society Boy Scout Merit Badge an unqualified success

SME members developed and support the successful program

The Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration Inc. (SME) was instrumental in the development of the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) Mining in Society merit badge, which was launched during the SME Annual Conference & Expo in Salt Lake City, UT, in February 2014 and led to 3,519 Mining in Society merit badges being earned by Scouts in 2014.

The BSA selected SME to lead the development of the new merit badge because of the dedication and expertise of SME’s members. During the past year, SME members have supported the Mining in Society merit badge by becoming merit badge counselors, hosting workshops and conducting mine tours to help Boy Scouts learn more about the industry. Mining has also been accepted as a STEM subject by Scouting, raising its profile even further.

“The Mining in Society merit badge has stirred great interest among the Scouts and Scouting,” said SME member Frank McAllister, former Chairman & CEO, Stillwater Mining Company. “In fact, we are taking the merit badge to the World Scout Jamboree in Japan, July 28 - August 8, 2015.”

McAllister notes that more than 33,000 Scouts from over 100 counties will be in attendance. The merit badge will be showcased at the City of Science exhibit, where gold panning demonstrations will entice visitors. Acollaborative effort with Japan Scouting, led by Rio Tinto-Japan, is being developed to showcase equipment from six different companies in conjunction with a detailed overview of the merit badge. The objective is to challenge the other visitor countries to adopt a Mining Merit Badge for their programs.

SME has been invited by BSA to host the Mining in Society merit badge booth at the 2017 National Scout Jamboree at the BSA facilities in West Virginia. To learn more about the Mining in Society merit badge, including how to become a counselor, visit

The Society for Mining, Metallurgy & Exploration Inc. (SME) is a professional society (nonprofit 501(c)(3) corporation) whose more than 15,000 membership represents all professionals serving the minerals industry in more than 100 countries. SME members include engineers, geologists, metallurgists, educators, students and researchers. SME advances the worldwide mining and underground construction community through information exchange and professional development. SME's staff is located in Englewood, Colorado.

For more information contact John Hayden, Deputy Executive Director - Public Affairs and Government Relations, at (303) 948-4250 or