By Melanie Petrucci, Senior Community Reporter
Northborough – Mateo Oyola, from Boy Scout Troop 1 of Northborough, was awarded the Boy Scout organization’s highest rank – Eagle Scout – on Oct. 1. His project involved making improvements to the Edmunds Hill trails in town.
“This was a trail that I went to a lot when I was younger and it really needed the work done to it,” he shared. “Secondly, this big beautiful sign had been knocked down and it had just been laying there for about a year and a half sign and no one had come to pick it up, or clean it and it was totally overgrown so I felt that was a real shame.”
The Eagle Scout requirements include working with and involving the community.
“It takes a lot of people to make an Eagle Scout, it’s a community effort and it brings a lot people together – it really is a fantastic program,” stated Mateo’s father, Arnold Oyola.
To begin his project, Oyola reached out to Northborough Trails Committee, who gave him some projects to do. He built two foot bridges and updated some of the trail markings in addition to rebuilding the sign at the Allen Street and Rice Avenue entrance. These projects took place over the past summer and a number of other Scouts helped with the heavy lifting.
When asked what prompted him to go for his Eagle Scout, Oyola replied, “My troop in recent years has been producing a lot of Eagle Scouts and working on their projects and being with these other great young leaders really inspired me to put this project together and achieve this on my own.”
A student at Algonquin Regional High School, Oyola has been in Scouts for about 10 years. He is passionate about music and plays the saxophone for ARHS’s jazz band, wind ensemble and pep band. He is also president of the Tri-M Honor Society as well as a member of National Honor Society and the Order of the Arrow which is an honor society of the Boy Scouts of America.
Presently, Olyola is preparing to apply to colleges where he intends to study music and physics.
“There are a couple of things that I am interested in. Music performance is a top career and physics is a topic that really interests me so I’ll be applying to some STEM colleges and hoping for the best that I’ll get into some good programs,” he noted.
He credits Scouting with helping him achieve his goals.
“Not only does it make a leader out of the Eagle Scout, but it forces the Eagle Scout to make leaders out of their friends and family,” Oyola said. “It’s an awesome experience.”