Recent Reynoldsburg High School graduate Daniel Ficocelli, a member of Boy Scout Troop 826, ran into a few roadblocks with his initial Eagle Scout project, but quickly changed gears and earned scouting's highest rank by completing a major project at St. Pius X Church.

Recent Reynoldsburg High School graduate Daniel Ficocelli, a member of Boy Scout Troop 826, ran into a few roadblocks with his initial Eagle Scout project, but quickly changed gears and earned scouting's highest rank by completing a major project at St. Pius X Church.

Ficocelli completed a 33-by-20-foot gated enclosure for the church dumpsters, which had to be relocated because of a planned remodeling/expansion project.

"I created a 6-foot tall fence to cover up the dumpsters, with two 9-foot swing gates and one 10-foot swing gate across the front to allow access for the garbage trucks," he said. "The project, from conception to completion, took approximately nine months and is now standing and being put to use at the church."

The enclosure was not what he had originally planned.

His initial project was a walkway with handrails in the church parking lot for latchkey children. Even though the Boy Scout Council approved that project, it was scrapped because of the church's plans for capital expansion.

There was an urgent need, however, for the enclosure for the relocated dumpsters.

A member of the church since childhood, Ficocelli served as an altar boy and is now a Eucharistic minister. He has been a part of the St. Pius X youth group for the past four years and is a member of the music group Merging Spirits.

He thought of his church community first for fundraising, by conducting a bake sale after one full weekend of Masses.

"I made double the money I anticipated originally needing and was able to complete the project well within my budget," he said. "I ended up with $567.78 left over from the original $2,964.36 I started with and I donated that extra money back to the church."

Ficocelli used a two-dimensional computer program to design the project, then completed it with the help of other scouts and adults in his troop.

"The project took a little longer than originally anticipated because I had to work around the cement contractor's schedule to set fenceposts and gateposts in concrete, making sure all the gates were level and fitting the fence pickets around the gate hinges," he said.

He said being a Boy Scout has taught him valuable life lessons.

"I learned humility through things like highway cleanup, service through helping other scouts with Eagle projects and time management through my own project," he said.

Ficocelli will study industrial design this fall at the University of Cincinnati.

His dad and scoutmaster, Mark Ficocelli, said the objective of scouting is "to develop character and virtue in young men."

"They begin at age 11 typically, but can enter at any age younger than 18," he said. "During that time, they work through a variety of requirements for each of the ranks that lead up to eagle."

Mr. Ficocelli said the requirements revolve around developing skills of service, such as first-aid and wilderness survival, which facilitates a scout's ability to respond to emergency situations and come to the assistance of others.

"They also learn skills of leadership, which are very important to a scout's development," he said. "The adults serve as advisers to the youth leaders that run the operations of the troop and manage all the interactions with the scouts."

He said the primary purpose of an Eagle project is to allow a scout to foster leadership and project management skills.

"So the scout is not supposed to complete all of the work of the project themselves, but rather to design and develop a program that includes the necessary funds and facilitates the opportunity for others to complete the project under their management," he said.

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