EDISON, NJ – The Thomas Edison Center received an informational facelift courtesy of a local girl scout.
Nina Trousdale needed a community service project for her gold award project. An Edison-based girl scout for most of her life, Trousdale grew up surrounded by Thomas Edison.
From the time she was a kindergartner at Menlo Park Elementary School, Trousdale learned everything about “the Wizard of Menlo Park.” So, when it came time for her service project, Trousdale knew exactly what she wanted to do: create a lasting educational opportunity around her town’s namesake.
Working with The Thomas Edison Center’s Executive Director Kathleen Carlucci, Trousdale built and installed an information kiosk detailing Edison’s time in Edison, specifically his home and life in town.
“I’ve learned about Thomas Edison’s work at Menlo Park from the four information kiosks, all created by Eagle Scouts, already on the Center's grounds,” Trousdale said. “I decided to focus on another important link—Thomas Edison’s home and life here. Through this project, I hope to inform Edison residents and the wider community about the life of the inventor whom this town is named after.”
Trousdale’s kiosks, which include four metal informational plaques, stand in front of the entrance path leading to the site where Edison’s house once stood.
According to Girl Scouts of America, the Gold Award project is the most prestigious award that Girl Scout Seniors and Ambassadors can earn. The Girl Scout equivalent to the Boy Scout Eagle Award, obtaining the Gold Award involves many hours of preparation and work to complete. Trousdale said she learned how to deal with many real-word problems during her quest.
“Project management, regular communication, and accurate research were critical components of my project,” Trousdale said. “I improved my abilities in all these areas. I learned to follow up consistently, ask for help, manage my time, and deal with roadblocks. I also learned how to handle tools safely and taught others to do the same.”
Aside from the Center’s Carlucci, Girl Scout project advisor Nicole White, Builders General, Ricciardi Brothers of Edison and PrintCBF of Cedar Grove assisted Trousdale with the project.