July 2012
Issue No. 14

In celebration of 100 years of Girl Scouting, the Girl Scout Research Institute conducted a large-scale study to assess the impact of Girl Scouting on the lives of adult women today. There are an estimated 59 million living alumnae; nearly one in every two adult women in the United States was a member of Girl Scouting as a girl.

Girl Scouting Works: The Alumnae Impact Study finds that women who were Girl Scouts as girls display positive life outcomes to a greater degree than women who were not Girl Scouts. These positive outcomes include:

  • Sense of self
  • Community service
  • Civic engagement
  • Education
  • Income

This is the case for all Girl Scout alumnae, across age/generations, social classes, races, and engagement in other extracurricular activities.

In addition, women who were in Girl Scouts for three or more years had more positive outcomes, including the outcomes above as well as life and relationship satisfaction, and leadership.

The study engaged more than 3,750 women, of whom roughly 2,000 were Girl Scout alumnae, through various qualitative and quantitative methods including focus groups, in-depth individual interviews, an online community, online chats, a national random digit dial (RDD) telephone survey, a mobile phone survey, and an online survey. Check out the GSRI webpage for the full report, summary, highlights, and a video featuring stories from Girl Scout alumnae.

Girl Scouting Works in the News

Girl Scouting Works was released on March 12, 2012, the 100th birthday of Girl Scouting. Follow the links below for more on the 100th birthday of Girl Scouting, and research report:

New Research Affirms Lifetime Benefits Of Girls’ Participation in Girl Scouting

U.S. organization has done much for young women in its first century of existence.

CENTURY STRONG: Girl Scouts celebrate 100 years

Girl Scout Alumnae Invited to Reconnect

Looking toward the next century of girl leadership

The Girl Scout Leadership Experience (GSLE) sets out a bold and aspirational model of leadership that encourages girls to Discover themselves, Connect with others, and Take Action to make the world a better place. The GSLE intentionally engages girls via three unique processes: girl-led, learning by doing, and cooperative learning. The GSLE is at the core of Girl Scouting, and encourages girls to become visionary leaders. Read more >

Connecting Leadership Outcomes to Developmental Assets

The Discover, Connect, and Take Action benefits in Girl Scouting are applied to the broader goals of the youth development community in a new publication by the Girl Scout Research Institute, Mapping the Girl Scout Leadership Experience Outcomes to the Search Institute's Youth Developmental Assets.

In this toolkit, links are made between the 15 GSLE outcomes and The Search Institute's 40 Developmental Assets, which measures positive experiences and qualities that help make young people successful, caring, and responsible adults.

By establishing the links between GSLE outcomes and The Search Institute’s Developmental Assets, this toolkit allows users to speak in a more common language and to identify broader connections between Girl Scout programming and the goals of funders and other community partners that use the Search Institute's Assets framework.

100th Anniversary of Girl Scouting

Here’s a quick snapshot of some 100th anniversary celebratory events:

The Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade featured a 100th Anniversary Float filled with images of Girl Scouting and its activities, from robotics to the famous cookies. Girl Scouts of the USA CEO Anna Maria Chávez was the featured rider on the float, accompanied by 60 Girl Scout Gold and Silver Girl Award recipients.

In celebration of the 100th anniversary and the Year of the Girl, Girl Scouts of the USA launched ToGetHerThere, the largest, boldest advocacy and fundraising cause campaign dedicated to girls’ leadership in the nation’s history. The ToGetHerThere kickoff featured a panel discussion featuring female leaders across industry, finance, media, non-profit and sports, as well as an event on Capitol Hill.

Girl Scouts by the thousands turned the Mall of America green during the Great Girl Gathering on March 10 & 11.

On March 12, Girl Scouts and Anna Maria Chávez gathered together for a sunrise ceremony in Savannah Georgia, the birthplace of Girl Scouting, to usher in the next 100 years of Girl Scouting.

Also on March 12, Girl Scouts of the USA and Girl Scouts of Greater New York visited the NASDAQ MarketSite in Times Square to celebrate their 100th anniversary and ring the Opening Bell.

Over 250,000 Girl Scouts, friends, family, and alumnae came together on The National Mall in Washington, DC for Girl Scouts Rock the Mall: 100th Anniversary Sing-Along on June 9.

The B.I.G. (Believe in Girls) Celebration at Liberty State Park in New Jersey was a day-long event attended by Girl Scouts across the nation culminating in an evening concert featuring pop stars and a Grammy nominated artist.

Our 100th Anniversary Take Action Project, Girl Scouts Forever Green (GSFG) is a global effort to improve the environment and protect natural resources. Girl Scout councils from across the country are taking part in this exciting and important initiative!

Upcoming Events

This July, girls from 145 countries and 100 U.S. Girl Scout councils will meet in Chicago to address the worlds’ more urgent challenges at The Girls World Forum 2012.

The Girl Scouts' Centennial Celebration will run concurrently with the Texas State Fair, the largest and longest-running state fair in the country, attracting five million visitors over 24 days, beginning on September 28.

Girl Scouts of the USA is using the occasion of its 100th anniversary to declare 2012 the Year of the Girl and launch ToGetHerThere: the largest, boldest advocacy and fundraising cause campaign dedicated to girls’ leadership issues in the nation’s history. This multiyear effort will help break down societal barriers that hinder girls from leading and achieving success in everything from technology and science to business and industry. Our long-term goal is ambitious and urgent: to create balanced leadership in one generation. To do that, we must ask all adult members of society—mothers, fathers, corporations, governments, and nonprofits—to help girls reach their leadership potential and place this urgent issue front and center on the national agenda. We all have a role to play in helping girls achieve their full leadership potential, because when girls succeed, so does society.


On Friday, June 8, Girl Scouts of the USA CEO Anna Maria Chávez, National President Connie Lindsey, and eight outstanding Girl Scout Gold Award recipients from across the country met in the Oval Office with President Obama to stress the urgent needs of girls and the ToGetHerThere goal of attaining balanced leadership. Read more >

In honor of our 100th Anniversary, we’re highlighting Girl Scouts from all walks of life. Are you a Girl Scout Great? If you are a Gold Award recipient, a dedicated volunteer, a celebrity, or a transformational leader who is making a difference in your community, we want to hear your story! Please fill out our questionnaire to be considered for a feature or to nominate a Girl Scout Great.

You were once a Girl Scout. You hiked trails and camped out under the stars. You canvassed your neighborhood to sell Trefoils and Thin Mints. You honed your skills with each badge you earned. You learned to lead. And you built lifelong friendships.

Whatever your Girl Scout role may have been—Brownie, Junior, Cadette, troop leader, camp volunteer, staff member, or dozens of others—you’re part of a 59-million-strong network of Girl Scout alumnae with success stories to tell and memories to share.

To reconnect with your past while supporting this generation of girls, join our Alumnae Association. It's free, and you'll find opportunities to return to your Girl Scouting roots in a way that fits your schedule, fuels your passion, and fills your life.

Every girl has greatness inside her. Girl Scouts helps her find it.

Judy Schoenberg, Director of Research and Outreach, GSRI presented findings from a paper on girls and political aspirations at the annual American Popular Culture Conference in Boston on April 13, 2012.

Judy also presented on the Girl Scouts of the USA collaboration with MAKERS, a historic video initiative documenting the lives of trailblazing women leaders at the launch event in New York City on May 1st.

The GSRI e-newsletter keeps you informed about the most recent research on girls’ healthy development from the important work of the Girl Scout Research Institute’s original research, program evaluation and outcomes measurement, public policy and advocacy efforts all around the country. Share this e-newsletter with your friends! Sign up here for the e-newsletter or forward this to a friend and stay informed about news from the Girl Scout Research Institute

The Girl Scout Research Institute, formed in 2000, is a vital extension of Girl Scouts of the USA. The GSRI conducts original research, evaluation, and outcomes measurement studies; releases critical facts and findings; and provides resources essential for the advancement of the well-being and safety of girls living in today's world. The GSRI also informs program, public policy, and advocacy for Girl Scouting.

Girl Scout Research Institute

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Girl Scouts of the USA

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