What to do once you become a Life Scout? One of the first questions scouts have is "Where do I begin, there are so many things to do?" The answer is easy- First, contact your Scoutmaster, Mr. Voiles. Communication is very important to a successful project. Scouts- you're not alone in this, your Scoutmaster is there for you, your troop is there for you, we all want to see you become an Eagle Scout. Parents- encourage your son, point him in the right direction and he will do the work, they all do. If you have any questions contact Scoutmaster Voiles or an adult leader in the troop. Scouts and parents read the information below, it is current and accurate.
Earning the Rank of Eagle Scout 2021 BSA Requirements Prepared by: Ed Marek
Life Rank requirements: To advance from a Star Scout to a Life Scout you must complete the following:
Be active in your troop for at least six months as a Star Scout.
Demonstrate Scout Spirit by living the scout oath and law. Tell how you have done your duty to God and how you have lived the Scout Oath and Scout Law in your everyday life.
Earn five more merit badges (so that you have 11 in all), including any three additional badges from the required list for Eagle. You may choose any of the 17 merit badges on the required list for Eagle to fulfill this requirement. See Eagle rank requirement 3 for this list.
While a Star Scout, participate in six hours of service through one or more service projects approved by your Scoutmaster. At least three hours of this service must be conservation-related.
While a Star Scout, serve actively in your troop for six months in one or more of the following troop positions of responsibility. Boy Scout troop: Patrol leader, assistant senior patrol leader, senior patrol leader, troop guide, Order of the Arrow troop representative, den chief, scribe, librarian, historian, quartermaster, bugler, junior assistant Scoutmaster, chaplain aide, instructor, webmaster, or outdoor ethics guide. It is important to know that assistant patrol leader is not an approved position of responsibility for Life rank.
While a Star Scout, use the Teaching EDGE method to teach another Scout (preferably younger than you) the skills from ONE of the following choices, so that they are prepared to pass those requirements to their Scoutmaster’s satisfaction. a. Tenderfoot 4a and 4b (first aid) b. Second Class 2b, 2c, and 2d (cooking/tools) c. Second Class 3a and 3d (navigation) d. First Class 3a, 3b, 3c, and 3d (tools) e. First Class 4a and 4b (navigation) f. Second Class 6a and 6b (first aid) g. First Class 7a and 7b (first aid) h. Three requirements from one of the required Eagle merit badges, as approved by your Scoutmaster
While a Star Scout participate in a Scoutmaster’s conference.
Successfully complete your board of review for the Life rank.
Eagle Rank requirements: To advance from a Life Scout to an Eagle Scout you must complete the following:
Be active in your troop for at least six months as a Life Scout.
As a Life Scout, demonstrate Scout Spirit by living the Scout Oath and Scout Law. Tell how you have done your duty to God, how you have lived the Scout Oath and Scout Law in your everyday life, and how your understanding of the Scout Oath and Scout Law will guide your life in the future. List on your Eagle Scout Rank Application the names of individuals who know you personally and would be willing to provide a recommendation on your behalf, including parents/guardians, religious (if not affiliated with an organized religion, then the parent or guardian provides this reference), educational, employer (if employed), and two other references.
Earn a total of 21 merit badges (10 more than required for the Life rank), including these 13 merit badges: (a) First Aid, (b) Citizenship in the Community, (c) Citizenship in the Nation, (d) Citizenship in the World, (e) Communication, (f) Cooking, (g) Personal Fitness, (h) Emergency Preparedness OR Lifesaving, (i) Environmental Science OR Sustainability, (j) Personal Management, (k) Swimming OR Hiking OR Cycling, (l) Camping, and (m) Family Life. You must choose only one of the merit badges listed in categories h, i, and k. Any additional merit badge(s) earned in those categories may be counted as one of your eight optional merit badges used to make your total of 21.
While a Life Scout, serve actively in your troop for six months in one or more of the following positions of responsibility in a Boy Scout troop. Patrol leader, assistant senior patrol leader, senior patrol leader, troop guide, Order of the Arrow troop representative, den chief, scribe, librarian, historian, quartermaster, junior assistant Scoutmaster, chaplain aide, instructor, webmaster, or outdoor ethics guide. It is important to know that assistant patrol leader and bugler are not approved positions of responsibility for Eagle rank.
While a Life Scout, plan, develop, and give leadership to others in a service project helpful to any religious institution, any school, or your community. (The project must benefit an organization other than the Boy Scouts of America.) A project proposal must be approved by the organization benefiting from the effort, your Scoutmaster and unit committee, and the council or district before you start. You must use the Eagle Scout Service Project Workbook, BSA publication No. 512-927 January 2019 edition, in meeting this requirement. (To learn more about the Eagle Scout service project, see the Guide to Advancement, topics 22.214.171.124 through 126.96.36.199.)
While a Life Scout, participate in a Scoutmaster conference. Note: In preparation for your board of review, prepare and attach to your Eagle Scout Rank Application a statement of your ambitions and life purpose and a listing of positions held in your religious institution, school, camp, community, or other organizations, during which you demonstrated leadership skills. Include honors and awards received during this service.
Successfully complete your board of review for the Eagle Scout rank. (This requirement may be met after age 18, in accordance with Guide to Advancement topic 188.8.131.52).
Eagle Leadership Service Project
Your project must perform meaningful service. It may be to a school, religious institution or to your community.
You must plan and demonstrate leadership.
You must recruit volunteers to work on your project.
There is no requirement on number of hours to do your project.
You must use the current BSA Eagle Scout Leadership Service Project Workbook.
Project Workbook: What to do first.
You must use the current BSA Eagle Scout Service Project Workbook, BSA publication No. 512-927 January 2021 edition. This version can be found at the bottom of this page.
Open a line of communication with your Scoutmaster or an adult leader in your troop and start discussing possible project ideas; scouts this is your responsibility and shows your desire to becoming an Eagle Scout.
Describe the project you plan to do.
Answer the question "Who will benefit from the project".
How does the project benefit the recipient?
Project details – plan your work by describing the present condition, the method, materials to be used, project helpers and time schedule to carry out your project.
If appropriate, include photos and maps of the area before you have approval. Note that this is very helpful in most projects.
The project must be approved by the benefiting organization or group, by your Unit Leader/Scoutmaster, a member of the Troop Committee/Committee Chair and then lastly approved by the District Eagle Advancement Chair before starting. All signatures must be on the exact same project description. If any changes occur after you receive any signature, you may need to go back and update those who have signed your workbook. Do not go to your District Eagle Advancement Chair alone; you will be asked to have your parent/guardian or adult scout leader attend with you.
Remember to give your beneficiary the document "Navigating the Eagle Scout Service Project, Information for Project Beneficiaries."
What Not to Do:
Begin a project before you have your Life rank.
Do not begin work on your project before all required signatures have been acquired regarding your Eagle Project Proposal.
You cannot share a single project with another scout. New projects can connect to an already completed project.
Propose a project for a profit-making organization/business.
Propose a project on any Boy Scout property or directly for Boy Scouts of America.
Do not choose a project that is of routine labor. Some examples of what routine labor is; cutting the schools grass, raking leaves at your place of worship, washing windows at a school.
What to do:
Consult your Scoutmaster or an adult leader in your troop while selecting a project and developing your proposal.
Choose a project you will be proud of. In other words, make this count for something; be proud of the project idea.
Select a project that stretches your abilities.
Create a ledger of hours: This begins when you start to put a project idea in motion. Keep track of all your time and that of any volunteers, adults, scouts or BSA adults that help you or whom you meet with in regards to the project. We strongly suggest that you note your time as it happens. This will save you a lot of time at the end of the project. A spreadsheet template is available on the Troop Website. It captures the information the BSA Eagle Scout Service Project Workbook will require.
Document your project from the start. This should include photos of before, during and after the project. This may also include maps and current aerial photos from the internet.
The scoutmaster should be kept informed as the project proceeds after the proposal is signed. The Scoutmaster should be invited to all work days. If the Scoutmaster cannot attend, he may ask another adult to go. The reason is that the Scoutmaster’s signature is required at the end of the project. In order for the Scoutmaster to be able to sign off on the project they need to have the knowledge that the scout demonstrated leadership and has met the requirements of an Eagle project.
Important to remember:
When you have a discussion with the project beneficiary, if they hand you a complete idea, an idea that they put everything together, this shows no planning on your behalf and in its current condition cannot be approved. What needs to take place is a discussion where you put your ideas into the planning, give your opinion and make it count. It can be as simple as: the type of stone to be used, the color of paint, the length of the trail, the design of the benches or tables, the type of flowers/bushes/trees, the quantity of items collected.
Current Youth Protection requires 2 current trained adults at all BSA activities including Eagle Scout projects. It is the responsibility of the scout with help of the troop to follow this rule.
Eagle Project Write Up: Once the Proposal is signed you can begin your project. You also can work ahead in the workbook where appropriate. Do not wait until the end of the project to start your write up as it can be overwhelming or information may be lost such as issues, problems, changes or successes that occurred that should be noted.
When in doubt remember to call your Scoutmaster, an adult leader in your troop or district Eagle advancement chair and discuss your idea.
Scouts- remember that communication is very important, and it begins with you. Give your Scoutmaster updated reports as you progress through your project, this means the before, during and after project phases.
Is the Project description and plan complete?
Do I have signatures from the following people: benefiting organization rep, Unit Leader/Scoutmaster, troop committee member/Committee Chair and District Eagle Advancement Chair?
Are records of the project progress complete?
Is there a record of all the people who worked on the project and how much time they worked and when?
Are the tour permits included?
Is there a record of donated and/or purchased materials including your budget?
A copy of the approved fund raising form if applicable.
Was there any fundraising done to purchases materials, are the fundraising records complete, and are all moneys and materials accounted for? All funds raised should go to the troop treasurer or beneficiary for disbursal of funds for reimbursement.
Were there any changes from the original project, if so, are they recorded?
Are there before, during and after photos? Everyone should have photos.
Are there any pertinent records, receipts, or flyers relating to the project enclosed?
Reference Letters should have been sent to or handed out to the individual’s a letter is being requested from. All letters must be turned in or mailed to the Council Scout office. Scouts you should never see these letters, only your Board of Review will see them.
Official checklist is found at the bottom of this page.
Service Project Ideas- A brief list of some successful projects used by other scouts:
Build a Playground
Build shelters for the Wildlife Preserve or Conservation group
Build picnic tables and/or benches for community park
Hearing aid, eyeglass or clothing drive for local shelter
Toy drive for the local shelter
Book drive for the library
Plant trees in a park or along a bike path
Paint mile markers on a bike path and clear brush along the way
Area trail maintenance, repair, building
Build bat and/or owl houses
Clothing drive for homeless
Toiletry items for in need shelters
The internet has thousands of project ideas, your project does not need to be original
Still looking for a project idea; check with your school, church, local American Legion post, local VFW post, DNR, local community government or talk with your Scoutmaster or Committee Chair.
Eagle Project Finances
There is a fundraising form in the Eagle project workbook, you will need to use this and have it approved by your project beneficiary, Scoutmaster and the Council Advancement Committee Chair if you plan to actively seek monetary and/or material donations of $500 or above from anyone other than you, parents, siblings, family, families in your troop, your troop or the beneficiary of your project. Non solicited donations for your project are exempt from using this form. Send filled out and signed form to Mr. Tom Sisson at email@example.com
BSA Guide to Advancement Section 184.108.40.206 states the handling of funds raised and clearly states: "Once collected, money raised must be turned over to the beneficiary or the candidate’s unit until needed for the project. If the unit receives the funds, it must release any excess to the beneficiary once expenses have been paid. If the beneficiary is not allowed, for whatever reason, to retain any excess funds, supplies, or materials, the beneficiary should be asked to designate a suitable charity to receive them or allow the unit to retain the funds. The unit must not influence this decision.
Troop 49 allows monetary funds from your scout account may be used to pay for:
The troop treasurer must be notified of this intent before proceeding
Eagle Project Expenses
Eagle Ceremony Expenses – including expenses for the ceremony if the ceremony occurs after the scout’s 18th birthday – the treasurer must be notified of this intent before the scout’s 18th birthday and the scout will be given a 6 month grace period after their 18th birthday.
Project Fundraising Application
When fundraising activity is needed for your project and the amount is over $500 then fill out the fundraising form found in your eagle project workbook
This form should be filled out and signed by the beneficiary rep and scoutmaster.
Do not begin your fundraising activity until you have the approved application in hand.
The use of crowdfunding websites though discouraged is not prevented by BSA. The reason is the crowdfunding host will take a percentage of your funds for hosting the activity and they are difficult to end or shut off on a given date or time. Also dispersal of funds may be difficult to secure. It is important that someone in a position of responsibility reads and understands the website’s “fine print.”
Eagle Application Recommendations / Letters of Reference
On the Eagle Scout application requirement 2 states: “Demonstrate that you live by the principles of the Scout Oath and Scout Law in your daily life. List the names of individuals who know you personally and would be willing to provide a recommendation on your behalf.”
Some questions scouts have and what to do:
“Who can be placed on this list”, the line on the application is asking for a specific person. Parent(s) or guardian(s), Religious, Educational, Employer (optional), and two others. The others can be anyone who knows you, does not need to be an adult.
“I don’t have a job”, the only optional reference is employer because not all scouts have a job and not all employers know the scout.
“My family does not belong to a place of worship” Scout can find a person who can attest to the scout’s belief in being a good person and that the scout is morally straight. Example could be your Scoutmaster, Adult leader or troop Chaplin Aide.
Letters of reference are a convenience to your board of review; our Potawatomi Area Council has made the choice to ask for these letters. Letters should be sent out as early as possible. A copy of the letter request is found at the bottom of this page.
It is the scout’s responsibility to see that the letters go out to the people from whom they are seeking a reference.
The top of the letter should be filled out by the scout with their personal contact information and handed to the individual that is being asked to write the letter, include an envelope addressed to the Council office, and include a stamp on the envelope.
Explain to the individual the purpose of the letter and ask that it be filled out and returned to the Council office as soon as possible.
Scouts, parents and troop leaders can call the Council office to inquire about letters they have received.
The Council office will keep your letters until the District Eagle Advancement Chair picks them up for your board of review.
The scout and troop will not see these letters; they are only for the members of the board of review.
Paperwork Submission to the Council office - You need to include the following paperwork:
The “Eagle Application” - The Eagle Application needs to be signed by the Scoutmaster and Troop Committee Chair; all dates filled in; all references completed; the only non-required reference letter is” work” and this is only if you do not have a job or in your place of work that no one really knows you.
A written statement about your life goals and leadership history.
A list of people sending in letters of recommendation (Scout and troop leaders are not permitted to view any and all letters submitted).
All papers relating to your project.
Pictures; before, during and after.
The original binder and 3 additional black and white copies should be turned into the Potawatomi Area Council office. Once checked by the Council office, all of your paperwork will be sent to the District Eagle Advancement Chair.
Accuracy of Dates-
The dates on your Eagle application must match the dates in the BSA National database; this is the same information that is on Scoutbook. It is the responsibility of the Scout to review and confirm that all information is accurate.
Potawatomi Area Council will use the information on Scoutbook as the official information.
Print out your Individual Scout Record from Scoutbook and compare it with the dates and other information in your Scout Handbook.
If any information differs, you need to contact the Troop Advancement Chair. You must give adequate time to correct the errors. Be sure to use only correct dates on your Eagle application.
The following reasons can cause your paperwork to be held up or rejected:
You must have four months between the ranks of 1st Class and Star.
You must have six months between the ranks of Star and Life.
You must have a minimum 13 Eagle required merit badges.
You must have a minimum 8 elective merit badges of your choice.
You must have a minimum 21 completed merit badges.
You must have service in a position of responsibility for at least six months as a Life Scout. Acceptable positions are listed in your scout book and on page 2 of the Eagle Scout application.
You must complete all Eagle requirements, turn in your complete Eagle workbook and write-up and have your Scoutmaster conference completed by your 18th birthday.
You will need to have your board of review completed within 90 days after your 18th birthday.
If an age extension is needed this must be done prior to the scouts 18th birthday. This will take time and there are limited reasons for this request and approval. Scouts seeking this must contact the Council office.
Eagle Board of Review Process
Once Council has approved the application and paperwork, it is forwarded to the District Eagle Advancement Chair (Mr. Pat Maloney, contact information below).
The District Eagle Advancement Chair will then schedule the “Eagle Board of Review” for the Scout.
The District Eagle Advancement Chair determines who sits on your Board of Review.
You need to present yourself to your Board of Review in a scouting manner. Do your best to be in as complete of a Scout uniform as you have, appearance reflects you. This should include your merit badge sash. If you are a member of the Order of the Arrow, do not wear your OA sash as this is not an OA event. OA pocket flap patch and level indicator are good.
Do your best to answer all questions in detail. Questions can be about your Eagle service project, your Scouting history, school, who you are. There is no set list of questions used by your board of review.
Any adult member from your troop; including your Scoutmaster, Assistant Scoutmaster will not be a member of your board of review. Committee members from your troop may be allowed to sit on your board only by invitation by the District Eagle Advancement Chair.
You’re Scoutmaster and your parents are encouraged to attend your Board of Review. The members of the Board of Review may choose to speak with your Scoutmaster and parent(s) separately and in private. You may choose to have your Scoutmaster join you during your Board, but only for moral support. This is up to scout. During your interview you are the only one talking with the Board, not your Scoutmaster.
------------------------------------------------------------- Western Trails District Eagle Advancement Chair: Mr. Pat Maloney W365 S2979 Walters Road Dousman, WI 53118 cell: (262) 613-7031 email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Delafield American Legion Post 196 Contact for Eagle project ideas at the Post: Gary Steinmueller – Legion house agent (414) 630-2020
Life to Eagle Presentation – Biannually our council office hosts this free workshop, it is recommended scouts and parents attend. If you are not able to attend the presentation, and would like to, contact your Scoutmaster or Council office.