Merit Badges are part of the Boy Scout advancement program. You can learn about sports, crafts, science, trades, business, and even future careers as you earn merit badges. There are more than 100 merit badges. Any Boy Scout may earn any merit badge at any time. You don't need to have had rank advancement to be eligible.
At Troop 451, we focus on the merit badge program by teaching merit badges throughout the year. The Merit Badges taught are decided upon by the Patrol Leader's Council during their 6 month planning conference. All boys in the Troop vote on the Merit Badges they want to see taught over the next 6 months.
You may also work on Merit Badges outside the meetings at any time. Some are only taught outside the meeting, due to the nature of the subject matter (e.g. SCUBA diving).
Available Merit Badges
As mentioned before, there are over 100 merit badges available. The National Scouting website has a full list of all current merit badges, with links to their requirements. Another site, meritbadge.com, also has the requirements, as well as links to worksheets that many counselors use.
Starting a New Merit Badge
You must get a Blue Card and get it signed by the Scoutmaster or one of the Assistant Scoutmasters before you can begin a new Merit Badge.
- Get a Blue Card from the Advancement Chair or from the Merit Badge Coordinator.
- Find out who the Merit Badge Counselor is for the badge that you want to work on. Ms. Shook has a list of all the counselors.
- Get the Blue Card signed by Mr. Hawkins or one of the Assistant Scoutmasters.
- Meet with the Merit Badge Counselor.
Finishing a Merit Badge
- Get the Blue Card signed off by the Merit Badge Counselor.
- Take the Blue Card to Mr. Hawkins or one of the Assistant Scoutmasters and ask them to sign it.
- Take the signed Blue Card to Mrs. Brinkerhoff.
Keep the copy that says "Scout copy" with your advancement records. These will be needed when you turn in your application for the Eagle Scout rank!