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Terryn Brunelle of Pelham earns Girl Scout Gold Award

Terryn Brunelle, 18, of Pelham, has earned the Girl Scout Gold Award, the highest achievement in Girl Scouting, for her project, Raise Pelham High SAT Scores Initiative.

Raising Pelham High School SAT scores was goal of project

BEDFORD, NH | Terryn Brunelle, 18, of Pelham, has earned the highest award in Girl Scouting, the Girl Scout Gold Award. Becoming a Gold Award Girl Scout means a girl has single-handedly changed the world – forever and for the better.

Terryn’s Gold Award project, “Raise Pelham High SAT Scores Initiative,” addressed her interest in helping students not just score better on the nationwide standardized test, but also help students further their goals after high school.

Noting that many students did not view the test as important, this Pelham High School valedictorian said she realized many students need help in developing better test-taking skills. She decided to create a comprehensive SAT strategy guide based on her personal experiences, which resulted in a Google doc available to all Pelham High School students and teachers, then published it online as well for other schools to use. She also condensed the guide into a PowerPoint presentation, gave tutorials to teachers and students for gaining access to SAT practice resources such as Khan Academy, and held regular meetings during the school’s “Snake Break” to mentor and tutor students. The Snake Break is a 25-minute period named after the Pythons mascot, where students can collaborate and get help with homework or other projects.

Her initiative will have a lasting impact on the students at her school, as the mandatory SAT Monday practice will remain in the school system, and guides published online will remain accessible.

Though not every student may be interested in improving SAT scores, Terryn said, “I took steps to overcome this issue by publicizing information on why the SAT is important to both students and teachers, and visiting students at the middle school in order to make an early impact.”

Terryn is now planning to attend MIT in the fall as a computer science engineering major. She said she is also hoping to pursue research in cyber security and/or artificial intelligence. She hopes to found her own technology-based startup in the near future.

“I hope to one day work as a software engineer,” she said, “and know that the experience my Gold Award project has provided me with will help me to more effectively lead others to complete software projects. This project had me working directly with students in my community and helped me to understand why students struggle with certain types of problems and standardized tests in general.”

Terryn exemplifies the Girl Scout DNA and takes the lead as a G.I.R.L. (Go-Getter, Risk-Taker, Innovator, Leader)™. To earn her Gold Award, each Girl Scout identifies and develops a Take Action project in her community that will stand the test of time, have a real and meaningful influence on people’s lives, and leave a legacy that lasts forever. It is one of the most challenging, exciting, and rewarding experiences a girl can have, and one of the most prestigious recognitions she’ll accomplish in life. And it’s only available at Girl Scouts.

Since 1916, Girl Scouts have been making meaningful, sustainable change in their communities and around the world. The Girl Scout Gold Award acknowledges the power behind each recipient’s dedication to not only empowering and bettering herself, but also to making the world a better place for others. Gold Award Girl Scouts are courageous leaders and visionary change makers.

About the Girl Scout Gold Award

  • Gold Award Girl Scouts on average spend one to two years on their project.
  • The average age of Gold Award Girl Scouts is 17.
  • Since 1916, 1 million girls have earned the Gold Award or its equivalent.
  • Gold Award Girl Scouts who join the armed forces enter one rank higher than other recruits.
  • University research indicates that noting you are a Gold Award Girl Scout on a college application is influential in the admissions decision-making process.
  • A Gold Award project must be sustainable after the girl’s involvement ends.
  • 11 young women earned their Gold Award last year in New Hampshire and Vermont as part of Girl Scouts of the Green and White Mountains.

About Girl Scouts of the Green and White Mountains: Girl Scouts of the Green and White Mountains is recognized throughout New Hampshire and Vermont as a leading expert on girls. Our innovative leadership programs help girls discover, connect, and take action as they develop strong values, a social conscience, and a deep sense of self and their potential. Through our exciting and challenging programs, Girl Scouts not only participate but also take the lead in a range of activities—from kayaking, archery, and camping, to coding, robotics, financial literacy training, and beyond! Serving more than 10,000 girls throughout New Hampshire and Vermont, girls discover the fun, friendship, and power of girls together. Visit