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Boy Scout Troop 33
(Hamilton, Michigan)
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Advancement FAQ for First Year Scouts

Here is what you need to know:

·       Ifyou haven’t already, make sure a leader updates the backof your Scout book with your rank advancements as you work on them at camp or at meetings.  At camp, you will work on Tenderfoot, Second and FirstClass requirements.

·       ALWAYS bring your book with you tomeetings – if youcomplete a rank requirement at a meeting, please have a leader sign yourbook.

·       Whenever you take part in a campoutor a service project or any other Scout event, make sure to note that in theback of your book.  Those events all “count” towards various rankadvancement requirements.

·       Oncea leader has updated your book, review the requirements for Tenderfoot (andpossibly Second Class).  If you seesomething you know that you have done, check it off and then bring it to a leader to initial. 

·       Once everything (except the ScoutSpirit, Scoutmaster Conference, and Board of Review) are signed off for yournext rank, please let the Advancement Chair know you are ready to rank.She will schedule a Scoutmaster conference and a Board of Review duringa Scout meeting.  PLEASE provide at leasttwo weeks’ notice prior to a Court of Honor (awards ceremony).

·       AScoutmaster Conference is a short meeting with the Scoutmaster and an AssistantScoutmaster.  They will look at the backof your book and ensure that you have met the requirements. NOTE: YOU MUST HAVE YOUR BOOK

·       Oncethe Scoutmaster conference is complete, you will (usually) go (immediately) toa Board of Review with three registered adults.They will determine whether you will receive your rank award.  They will ask you some basic questions aboutyour Scouting experience – for the first three ranks, it is pretty informal, sono worries!

·       YouCAN receive Tenderfoot, Second Class, and First Class at the same time.  Many Scouts will be ready for both Tenderfootand Second Class at the same time.

Hope thishelps explain how Boy Scouts “rank” a little bit.  Parents,you can always direct questions to the Scoutmaster, Committee Chair or Advancement Chair. Scouts,please see the Senior Patrol Leader or your Troop Guide with your questions, or the Advancement Chair when you are ready to rank or have merit badges (blue cards).


Upon joining, a new Boy Scout earns the "Scout" badge after demonstrating some basic knowledge of Boy Scouting.  For those that came from Webelos, it reaffirms what you learned as part of Arrow of Light.



The advancement program is often considered to be divided into two phases. The first phase from joining to First Class is designed to teach the boy Scoutcraft skills, how to participate in a group and to learn self-reliance. The Scout rank badge is awarded when the Scout demonstrates a rudimentary knowledge of the Scouting ideals and program. Tenderfoot, Second Class and First Class have progressively harder requirements in the areas of Scoutcraft, physical fitness, citizenship, personal growth and Scout Spirit.

Tenderfoot  Second Class  First Class


The second phase of Star, Life and Eagle is designed to develop leadership skills and allow the Scout to explore potential vocations and avocations through the merit badge program. The Star and Life ranks require that the boy serve in a position of responsibility and perform community service. Except for Scout rank, all ranks as well as Eagle Palms require that the candidate pass a Scoutmaster Conference and a Board of Review.

Star             Life          Eagle


Eagle Palms are awarded for continued leadership and skills development (merit badges) after the Eagle Scout rank has been earned. These palms help keep the Eagle Scouts active within the unit, contributing to the leadership of the unit, and assisting with the growth of the other Scouts within the unit.
Note that Eagle Palms are NOT considered "Ranks" by BSA

Eagle Palms

Eagle Rank Forms and Information

  Once a Scout has obtained the Life rank, he is ready to finish the quest towards Eagle.  This includes finishing the rest of the Eagle required badges, and earning the additional badges to complete the required total of 21.

  1. Be active in your troop, team, crew, or ship for a period of at least six months after you have achieved the rank of Life Scout.
  2. Demonstrate that you live by the principles of the Scout Oath and Scout Law in your daily life. 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, educational, and employer references.
  3. Earn a total of 21 merit badges (10 more than you already have), including the following:
    1. First Aid
    2. Citizenship in the Community
    3. Citizenship in the Nation
    4. Citizenship in the World
    5. Communication
    6. Cooking
    7. Personal Fitness
    8. Emergency Preparedness OR Lifesaving
    9. Environmental Science OR Sustainability
    10. Personal Management
    11. Swimming OR Hiking OR Cycling
    12. Camping
    13. Family Life

You must choose only one merit badge listed in items h, i, and k. If you have earned more than one of the badges listed in items h, i, and k, choose one and list the remaining badges to make your total of 21.

  1. While a Life Scout, serve actively in your unit for a period of six months in one or more of the following positions of responsibility. List only those position served after your Life board of review date.
    • Boy Scout troop. Patrol leader, assistant senior patrol leader, senior patrol leader, Venture patrol leader, troop guide, Order of the Arrow troop representative, den chief, scribe, librarian, historian, quartermaster, junior assistant Scoutmaster, chaplain aide, instructor, webmaster, or Leave No Trace trainer.
    • Varsity Scout team. Captain, cocaptain, program manager, squad leader, team secretary, Order of the Arrow team representative, librarian, historian, quartermaster, chaplain aide, instructor, den chief, webmaster, or Leave No Trace trainer.
    • Venturing crew/ship. President, vice president, secretary, treasurer, quartermaster, historian, den chief, guide, boatswain, boatswain's mate, yeoman, purser, storekeeper, webmaster, or Leave No Trace trainer.
  2. 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 Boy Scouting.) A project proposal must be approved by the organization benefiting from the effort, your unit leader 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, in meeting this requirement. (To learn more about the Eagle Scout service project, see the Guide to Advancement, topics through
  3. Take part in a unit leader conference.
  4. Successfully complete an Eagle Scout board of review. 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.

Forms and Information regarding Eagle rank and project:

(right click each link and do a "save as")
Eagle Checklist (Concise list of what you need to do)
Eagle Project Workbook (PDF - can be filled out and printed)

Rank Advancement - SM Conference and Board of Revi

Scoutmaster Conference

A Scoutmaster has an important job in guiding scouts to advance and the scoutmaster conference is a major step in the process. The actual advancement is not the thing - it's helping the scout grow in character that's important. Many scouts can easily learn and demonstrate skills for advancement sign-offs, but picking up on all the other benefits of scouting often does not occur.

If a scout takes some time to reflect on his scouting adventure that has brought him to this scoutmaster conference, he is more apt to feel a sense of accomplishment and set goals for further advancement. Providing scouts with an outline of topics to reflect on is a great help to get them focused on their path through the program.

The attached page is intended to be completed by a scout and brought to his scoutmaster conference for rank advancement. It should be given to the scout at least a week before his conference.

Icon File Name Comment  
Scoutmaster Conference Sheet.doc Fill out this sheet before a rank advancement conference. Informal conferences for problems or planning may be requested at any time.  

Board Of Review

The members of a Board of Review should have the following objectives in mind:

  • To make sure the Scout has completed the requirements for the rank.
  • To see how good an experience the Scout is having in the unit.
  • To encourage the Scout to progress further.

     Additionally, the Board of Review provides "quality control" on advancement within the unit, it provides an opportunity for the Scout to develop and practice those skills needed in a interview situation, and it is an opportunity for the Scout to review his accomplishments.
     The Board of Review is NOT a retest; the Scout has already been tested on the skills and activities required for the rank. However, the chairman of the Board of Review should ensure that all the requirements have been "signed off" in the Scout's handbook. Additionally, the chairman should ensure that leadership and merit badge records are consistent with the requirements for the rank.
     The Board of Review is an opportunity to review of the Scout's attitudes, accomplishments and his acceptance of Scouting's ideals.

Updated Requirements

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