Whether on the runway or off, Alexis Volpe has put confidence center stage, earning herself a prestigious Girl Scout award.
Volpe, 17, of Middletown, was awarded the Girl Scout Gold Award for her project “I Am Confident,” in which she organized a fashion show with the city’s Unified Theater group to promote self-empowerment among 18 children with special abilities.
Volpe is the first Middletown Girl Scout to earn this award since 1999.
“We have a really big population in Middletown and we haven’t had anyone since,” said her troop leader Yvonne Joy.
Unified Theater is a program of the city’s Recreation and Community Services office.
The event, which was held last April at Middletown High School, took months of planning between Volpe and her Girl Scout Gold Award mentor, Gail Myers. Myers said Volpe’s previous experiences greatly contributed to the project.
“Alexis planned a Girl Scout Gold Award project that was unique to her skills and background. She was experienced in pageants and had worked with special needs children as a Girl Scout,” Myers said.
Volpe, a senior at Middletown High School, is also a former Miss Middletown Outstanding Teen and aspires to compete for Miss Connecticut. She said she wanted to incorporate the lively environment that pageants bring and empower children to have their natural beauty radiate.
Months before the event, Volpe helped the children practice their runway walk and pose. They were given the ultimate beauty treatment with hair, makeup and wardrobe, all hand-selected and personalized by the children themselves.
“I just wanted to show other kids that this is fun, and give them the choice to wear whatever they wanted to wear — what made them feel the most confident — so they could show their confidence on the stage,” Volpe said.
Volpe was officially pinned on Jan. 15 at the Third Congregational Church in Middletown. During this ceremony, Girl Scout from each level witnessed the growth Volpe has made within the organization. Troop leaders hope Volpe’s work will inspire other girls to apply for the award.
“We made sure to include all other girls from Middletown — younger Girl Scouts. We had a representative from each level. We had a Daisy, Brownie, Junior, Senior, Cadet and the ambassador was Alexis. We wanted to share with all of them and show them how they could progress through the stages,” Joy said.
The Girl Scout Gold Award is the highest award a Girl Scout can earn. It requires a project to be completed with at least 80 hours of work, according to a press release. Nationally, less than 6 percent of Girl Scouts earn the honor. Girl Scout of Connecticut CEO Mary Barneby said Volpe is the perfect candidate for the award.
“Alexis embodies all qualities that are embodied in the Gold Award,” Barneby said. “She does so much within her community and giving back to it. She is very proud to be a Girl Scout. I was really so blown away at how she was able to engage the children and get them excited. She gave these children a gift that will live on forever.”
Volpe, who has been a Girl Scout for the last 11 years, had previously won a Silver Award for a tribute that honored the eight Sandy Hook victims who were Girl Scouts. She is currently the only Girl Scout ambassador for Middletown and serves on the board of directors of the Girl Scouts of Connecticut.
Volpe eventually plans to be a troop leader for a Daisy troop, she said.
Along with being active in Girl Scouts and pageants, Volpe is heavily involved on her campus. She plays tennis, is a section leader for her marching band and is a president of the Future Business Leaders of America at her school. She said she hopes to attend Central Connecticut State University after graduation and major in business marketing.Read more at:red cocktail dress