Advancement is the process by which youth members of the Boy Scouts of America progress from rank to rank in the Scouting program. Advancement is simply a means to an end, not an end in itself. Everything done to advance and earn these ranks, from joining until leaving the program, should be designed to help the young person have an exciting and meaningful experience. Education and fun are functions of the Scouting movement, and they must be the basis of the advancement program. A fundamental principle of advancement in Cub Scouting, Scouts BSA, Varsity Scouting, and Venturing is the growth a young person achieves as a result of his/her participation in unit program.
The Trail to Eagle Scout
Resources that our council has made available for Life Scouts on their "Trail to Eagle" are available at the link below.
The Trail to the Summit
Resources that our council has made available for Venturers on their "Trail to the Venturing Summit Award" are available at the link below.
Merit Badge Counseling
The merit badge counselor is a key player in the Boy Scout advancement program. Whatever your area of expertise or interest—whether it is a special craft or hobby (basketry, leatherwork, coin collecting), a profession (veterinary medicine, aviation, engineering), or perhaps a life skill (cooking, personal management, communications)—as a merit badge counselor, you can play a vital role in stirring a young man’s curiosity about that particular topic. By serving as a merit badge counselor, you offer your time, knowledge, and other resources so that Scouts can explore a topic of interest.
If you are not yet a merit badge counselor, it is easy to become a volunteer. You will need to register with the Boy Scouts of America, through your BSA local council by completing, and turning in the “Adult Application.” and a merit badge Counselor information sheet
In order to register, merit badge counselors are expected to complete BSA Youth Protection. This training can be done through The BSA’s Online Learning Center . The Boy Scouts of America seeks to create a safe environment for young people and adult leaders to enjoy the program and related activities. BSA Youth Protection training helps preserve that environment. All Merit Badge Counselors are entered into Scoutbook where scout families have acccess to contact them.
Today’s youth are spending more time than ever using digital media for education, research, socializing, and fun. To help families and volunteers keep youth safe while online, the Boy Scouts of America has introduced the Cyber Chip program. In developing this exciting new tool, the BSA teamed up with content expert NetSmartz®, part of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children® and training experts from many law enforcement agencies.
The Cyber Chip can be earned by any youth in the BSA’s programs. Topics include cyber bullying, cell phone use, texting, blogging, gaming, and identity theft. Material is tailored at each level for age-appropriateness.
- Cub Scouts: Grades 1–3
- Cub Scouts: Grades 4–5
- Scouts BSA, Varsity Scouts, Venturers, Sea Scouts: Grades 6–8
- Scouts BSA, Varsity Scouts, Venturers, Sea Scouts: Grades 9–12
In June 2012, the Boy Scouts of America launched its new program, the STEM Initiative. This program offers the STEM Nova Awards and STEM Supernova Awards. Within each Scouting program, there are four parallel Nova Awards available, one in each STEM field. These awards recognize completion of fun STEM activities. For those youth who want to take their STEM interests further, BSA offers the Supernova Award, which recognizes completion of independent, more advanced challenges in the STEM fields.
The National Eagle Scout Association (NESA)
For information on the National Eagle Scout Association (NESA) CLICK HERE.
For an application to join the Natonal Eagle Scout Association CLICK HERE
For our local Northeastern Pennsylvania Council NESA Chapter, CLICK HERE.
P.R.A.Y. (Religious Awards)
The religious award program for the BSA is administered by P.R.A.Y. (Program of Religious Activities for Youth).
For more information on this program CLICK HERE
Advancement for Special Needs Scouts
Since its founding in 1910, the Boy Scouts of America has had fully participating members with physical, mental, and emotional disabilities. James E. West, the first Chief Scout Executive, was a person with a disability. Although most of the BSA's efforts have been directed at keeping such youth in the mainstream of Scouting, it has also recognized the special needs of those with significant disabilities.
CLICK HERE for more information on Special Needs and Disabilities