M-W Eagle Scout creates Peace Pole at Pine Tree

on July 10, 2020

Recent MWHS graduate Matthew Cerillo hopes that his Eagle project will have a lasting effect on Pine Tree’s students and staff for years to come. The peace pole, engraved with the message “May Peace Prevail on Earth” in eight languages, resides in the PT courtyard and reminds everyone that kindness and acceptance are of utmost importance. Thank you, Matt, for all your hard work.

We asked Matt to reflect on his Eagle project and the impact he hopes it makes:

Q: Tell us about yourself: name, what schools you have attended in M-W, what grade currently in.
A: My name is Matthew Cerillo. I attended Pine Tree Elementary from 3rd to 5th grade, and I went to Monroe Woodbury Middle School. I am a recent graduate of Monroe-Woodbury High School.

Q: Scouting history: How old were you when you started as a scout? What troop are you in? Tell us about your favorite part of being a scout.
A: I started scouting when I was in 4th Grade in Pack 488. I am now in Troop 440. My favorite part of scouting is going to our summer camp at Camp Nobebosco where we can earn merit badges and participate in various other activities.

Q: What gave you the idea for this Eagle project?
A: I knew I wanted to do something that benefited Pine Tree Elementary as I went there as a kid and have so many good memories at the school. So, after talking to the principal, Mr.Giudice, we agreed that a Peace Pole would be a great addition to the school that will benefit the students.

Q: What was the vision/purpose of your project?
A: I wanted to provide a safe space for the students to sit while also being able to reflect on their actions and thoughts. I believe that the Peace Pole will inspire the students to embrace and accept each other for who they are.Matt Cerillo and Principal Giudice stand in front of the peace pole.

Q: What does the project include?
A: The project entails a wooden pole with the words “May Peace Prevail on Earth” in eight different languages inscribed into the pole, called a Peace Pole. I also installed 5 benches where the students can sit, and a walkway that leads to a nearby garden.

Q: Future plans?
A: I plan on attending Northeastern University, where I will be majoring in Applied Mathematics.

Q: How long have you been in scouts?
A: I have been in scouts for eight years, starting in 4th grade.

Q:What was the best part of this Eagle Scout Project?
A: The best part of my Eagle Scout Project was working with everyone in my troop to create a long lasting symbol of peace for the school.

Q: How did you fundraise to help get this project off the ground?
A: I ran a car wash to fundraise the necessary funds to start my project. I was also able to receive donations from companies, and friends and family.

Q: Who assisted you in this?
A: My fellow scouts and leaders in Troop 440 helped me be able to complete the project.

Q: What do you hope Pine Tree achieves by having this Peace Pole near their garden?
A: I think with the addition of the Peace Pole, students will be more aware of both the Peace Pole and the garden, and will inspire them to get more involved with keeping the garden and the environment as a whole clean.

Q: How do you feel about how the final product looks?
A: I am very happy and excited with how the final project came out as a lot of people put in a lot of work. I hope this project lasts for a very long time and will always be a safe place for students to go.