Hundreds of Boy Scouts attend merit badge university

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - It was a busy day on the Southeast Missouri State University campus.

About 700 Boy Scouts from more than 200 miles away rolled up their sleeves to earn merit badges.

It's the 30th anniversary of the merit badge university, an event organized by the Beta Psi chapter of the Alpha Phi Omega fraternity.

Scouts have the opportunity to complete merit badges to earn rank advancement in scouting.

"Merit badge university is fantastic because it provides convenience," said David Amelotti, scouting chair with Alpha Phi Omega. "A lot of these merit badges would take months upon months for these scouts to complete. And here with merit badge university, they have select prerequisite requirements that they have to complete.  They come today, they work with their counselors and then our hope is they all leave with a completed merit badge in hand."

Saturday's event offered 28 different merit badges, ranging from first aid to citizenship in the world and even golf.

The event takes 120 volunteers to run it and months of planning.

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