Thomas Alva Edison
For Scouts BSA
If you thrive on challenge, then earning the Supernova award will be right up your alley. To be eligible, you must be a First Class Scout or higher. As a prerequisite, you must first earn any three of the four Nova awards for Scouts BSA. With your parent’s and unit leader’s help, you must select a council-approved mentor who is a registered Scouter. You may NOT choose your parent or your unit leader (unless the mentor is working with more than one youth).
A Note to the Mentor
The Scouts BSA Supernova awards recognize superior achievement by a Scout in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). All experiments or projects should be conducted using the highest level of safety protocol and always under the supervision of a qualified, responsible adult. The Scout should always have a buddy when meeting with his counselor or mentor.
The following are the merit badges approved for use in earning the Scouts BSA Supernova awards.
Earn the Dr. Bernard Harris Supernova Award.
Complete ONE additional Scouts BSA Nova award for a total of four. (Note: This may be done at any time after becoming a member of Scouts BSA.)
Earn FOUR additional Supernova-approved merit badges from the list above, other than the four earned while working on the Dr. Bernard Harris Supernova Award for a total of eight. (Note: These may be earned at any time after becoming a Scout.)
Complete TWO additional Supernova activity topics, one each in the two STEM areas NOT completed for the Dr. Bernard Harris Supernova Award. (Note: The intent is that upon completion of the Thomas Alva Edison Supernova Award the Scout will have completed one Supernova activity topic in each of the four STEM areas.)
Participate in a local, state, or national science fair or mathematics competition OR any other equally challenging STEM-oriented competition or workshop approved by your mentor. An example of this would be an X-Prize type competition. (Note: The intent is that upon completion of the Thomas Alva Edison Supernova Award, the Scout will have participated in two such events.)
Working with your mentor, organize and present a Nova award or other STEM-related program to a Cub Scout den or pack meeting. Be sure to receive approval from the appropriate unit leader. If a Cub Scout den or pack is not available, your presentation may be given to another youth group, such as your troop or at your place of worship. (Note: The intent is that upon completion of the Thomas Alva Edison Supernova Award the Scout will have completed two such presentations.)
Research a scientific, technical, engineering, or mathematical breakthrough or invention of the past 100 years that has affected our society in a meaningful way and present your hypothesis on how it might further affect our society during your lifetime. Present either a 30-minute oral report or a 1,500-word written report to your mentor.
Submit a Supernova award application to the district or council Nova or advancement committee for approval.