Posted on 09/16/2022 in News & Announcements

Father + Son support scouting badge

Father and son team, Hennessey Engineers’ Jim Hollandsworth, PS, PE, and his son Brett Hollandsworth, PS, PE from PEA Group, volunteered Saturday, September 10 at the Michigan Scouting Merit Badge Weekend held at Cole Canoe Base Scout Camp in Alger, MI. Both are active members of the Michigan Society of Professional Surveyors (MSPS).

The weekend is special because it allows scouts to complete needed badges that may not be readily available during traditional summer camps. The Michigan Crossroads Council asked MSPS for volunteers in assisting and administering the Surveying Merit Badge. This badge is not offered often since it requires a professional surveyor to work with and instruct scouts.

Two scouts completing land surveying merit badge.

“Mentoring young people and exposing them to careers in the construction trades is critically important,” says, Jim Hollandsworth, PS, PE. “Working in the field and using the equipment in a real-world application stimulates curiosity and, perhaps, and interest in land surveying as a profession.”

Two Michigan high school freshmen, a male and a female, completed the hands-on field portion of the merit badge. The morning session required scouts to use a robotic total station (Trimble S5) to traverse a five-sided figure and an auto level to determine the elevation at each of the corner locations. Scouts also wrote field notes and revised the level notes for clarity. Scouts closed the level loop!

The afternoon session featured scouts using the angles they turned and distances measured with the robot to calculate by hand with the aid of their calculators the azimuths of each line, their latitude-departures, and ultimately compute the error of closure of their traverse. Again, these scouts were spot on and closed within 0.03 feet over approximately 850 feet. The scouts then used scales and protractors to sketch the traverse and prepare a metes and bounds legal description.

In addition to field exercises, scouts learned about the basics of land surveying, searching for property deeds, GPS, safety in the field, and the types of careers in land surveying. They also learned about the qualifications needed to become a professional surveyor. The entire session took 6.5 hours to complete.