SAN DIEGO, Calif. (KGTV) - A group of 18 young women were the first females to become Eagle Scouts through the San Diego Imperial Council.
Eligibility opened to women in 2019, and February of 2020 is when the first class achieved Eagle Scout.
Eden Tillotson was one of those 18. She is a senior at University City High School and said she has wanted to become an Eagle Scout since she was young.
She first got involved with various programs through Boy Scouts of America when she was in seventh grade. The different groups gave her opportunities to adventure outdoors and become a leader. With the highest service award possible for a Girl Scout already under her belt, she knew she wanted to go for Eagle Scout once it became possible.
“To have the opportunity was absolutely amazing. I knew it was going to be a long journey, it was going to be a center focus of mine and it has been worth it every step of the way,” said Eden.
Her Eagle Scout project was pandemic-inspired. She made 1,160 masks for local refugees and asylum seekers, which took 47 volunteers and 346 hours. She said this project also incorporates her aspirations for her future; she wants to become a surgeon for Doctors Without Borders, working in refugee camps.
“Along the way, I felt so empowered and now I feel even more empowered, and I know that all the girls who earned eagle and all the girls working toward it, they’re going to go on to do amazing things and they’re not going to let something stop them just because it’s the first time but just have that really push them through it and through the hard times as well,” said Eden.
She was one of about 1,000 women across the country to be part of the first group of Eagle Scouts.
"I’ve never felt like I wasn’t capable of doing something just because I was a girl. In fact, I found the exact opposite from my peers who were both boy and girl and that’s been an amazing thing to find," she said.