Girl Scouts Louisiana East awarded Girl Scouting’s highest honor, the Girl Scout Gold Award, to Lexus Pham, of Baton Rouge, and Jordan Smith, of Geismar, during a ceremony June 13 at the Old Governor’s Mansion. They were two of 17 Louisiana Girl Scouts who received the Girl Scout Gold Award in 2019.

In order to earn the Girl Scout Gold Award, a Girl Scout must demonstrate her ability and skills in goal setting, planning, implementing Girl Scout values and relating to the community. Each girl planned and executed a community service project with a minimum of 80 working hours, which reached beyond the Girl Scout organization and provided a sustainable, lasting benefit to the community.

Realizing that Louisiana’s math scores are the worst in the country, Pham came up with a way to encourage and give younger children an appreciation and confidence in math that would ultimately get them interested in science, technology, engineering and math. She held a weekly math tutoring summer program at a local library for elementary students. In addition to basic instruction and individual help, she devised fun games and prizes to encourage learning.

Pham is a 2019 graduate of Baton Rouge Magnet High School and is attending LSU this summer where she will continue her studies this fall, majoring in civil engineering. She was pinned by her father, Moc Pham.

Smith sought to bring awareness to childhood cancer, which is not as well understood as other forms of cancer. She educated the community in a variety of ways, the most visible being when she and her team of volunteers painted all the windows on Front Street in Natchitoches gold, and posted flyers designed to address the issue of childhood cancer and what people can do to make a difference. Smith is a 2019 graduate of the Louisiana School for Math, Science, and Arts and will be attending the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in the fall, majoring in mechanical engineering. She was pinned by her sister, 2016 Gold Award Girl Scout Allison Smith.