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When can a Life scout get his Eagle Project Approved and begin work on project?

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  • When can a Life scout get his Eagle Project Approved and begin work on project?

    I have a life scout that is in his fourth month of the six month requirement for Eagle Scout. He has an Eagle Project selected, completed the the workbook application and is ready to seek approval. Must he wait for six month requirement to be complete or can he arrange for the interview with the Eagle Project Approval Board?

    The Eagle Project workbook states:

    Eagle Scout Requirement 5

    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.

    I understand the statement "While a Life Scout" to mean he could have started on the first day after becoming a Life Scout.

    Any thoughts or clarification - he is a real go getter (in scouting activities) and he will be fifteen in a month.

  • #2
    Nope. Have him call the District Advancement Chair to find out the next step. Every District is different, so there might be a different person who guides the Scout at this point.


    • #3
      From the 2013 GTA:

      ~ “While a Life Scout …”
      Work on a project, including planning, begins after
      the Life Scout board of review. But this is not meant to
      preclude an enthusiastic Star Scout from talking with his
      Scoutmaster, religious leader, or principal about what a
      good project might be.


      • #4
        He can start his project now. If his project is finished before his 6 months in his POR is over, he will have to wait till the 6 months is up before he can finish his Eagle Rank. For sure, he can start talking to the district for approval tomorrow if he wanted to. He's in really good shape. Good luck to him!


        • #5
          Definitely send him to the project approval board. Some boys complete their project first, others their merit badges, others their position of responsibility, and a few do all three within 6 months!

          Regardless, if there's something that can be improved upon, now - while the boy is enthused with the task - is the time for someone from the district to point it out.


          • #6
            My advice has been to get the project over and done with ASAP! I've known to many people who had everything but the project completed, or had to rush their project to meet their 18th birthday.


            • #7
              He could have done it 4 months ago (if he had a project). As Eagle92 said, get the project over with ASAP. My son began working on his Eagle Project two weeks after getting Life. He met with the Parish Council with a preliminary proposal a month after getting Life. Now, it took 8 months (and a change in priests (a slowdown, both priests were in favor of project, but it took an extra month to sit down and talk to new priest)), but he completed his project two months before completing merit badges.


              • #8
                "Get your project over with ASAP"
                "Family Life, Personal Fitness and Personal Management are easier if you do them at the same time"
                "Environmental Science is tough. Get it at summer camp."
                "Get all three citizenships with Mrs. Jones. She's easy."
                "Personal Management is easier if you get it before you have a job"
                "SPL is a lot of work. Librarian and Historian will meet the requirement too."
                "Finish Eagle before high school."
                "I wonder why we haven't seen Billy since he made Eagle?"

                "Get it over with" is terrible advice. How about "Slow down. Enjoy your time in Scouting. Take your time to find a project which is meaningful to you."


                • #9
                  I think "getting it over with" was probably the wrong term. I think start working on it is the better term. My observation is that Eagles who do their project as soon as they hit Life tend to stay more active in Scouts post Eagle--the ones who sit at Life for a while tend to leave when they Eagle. My son just Eagled, and he has grand plans of staying with the troop. Family Life, Personal Fitness adn Pers Management are easier if you do them at teh same time. It's not a bad thing. It's just easier to keep trackof.

                  Twocub, do you have high school aged children? If not, then that explains why you don't believe in finishing Eagle before high school. There is a big dropoff in scouting among high school students--there's simply less available time. My advice, though, isn't finish Eagle before high school, but get as close to Eagle as possible before high school.


                  • Sentinel947
                    Sentinel947 commented
                    Editing a comment
                    I don't think Perdidochas is arguing to get Eagle and be done as early as possible. Earning Eagle later can just as easily be a get Life Scout at 13, disappear till 17, grab the bird and go.

                    TwoCub: I think the path I took to Eagle is fine and its surprisingly similar to your sons (Although I think I was closer to the deadline..). I think how Perdidochas Son is earning it is great. Twocubdad I think how your sons earned it is excellent as well. The point is that the Scout earning Eagle spends time in the program, gets the experiences out of it and gives back a bit.

                    I don't like the "What age is best to earn Eagle" discussion, because that question is very dependent on the Scout in question.

                    I've been involved with Boy Scouting for 6 years as a youth, and I'm closing in on my third year as an Adult leader far more rapidly than I'd like to be...

                    I've seen Young Eagles grab the Bird and Run. I've seen young Eagles stay involved in the program till they aged out. I've seen Scouts earn life at 13, leave till 17, then come back to get Eagle and disappear. (I'm absolutely not a fan of this, but it's very common.) I've seen Scouts earn Life at 13 and stay active with the Troop up until earning their Eagles at the last possible moment.

                    It depends on the Scout. We as Scoutmasters/Assistant Scoutmasters/Parents need to encourage Scouts to stay involved with the program regardless of whether they are are young and on the fast track to Eagle at 14 or on track to earn Eagle at 17. When they earn Eagle isn't nearly as important as what they are doing in the program. At least that's how I view it.

                    Yours in Scouting,

                  • perdidochas
                    perdidochas commented
                    Editing a comment
                    I'm not saying earn the Eagle as soon as possible. I'm saying get as much towards Eagle as you can when your time demands allow it.

                    My oldest plays football, does track and field, plays in youth orchestra, is active in the OA. I'm glad he has finished his Eagle. My oldest son is now at a point where he misses Scouts when he can't attend a meeting (primarily due to youth orchestra meeting for 6 week periods in the fall and spring on the same night/time as scouts). He's going to become the LNT trainer for the Trooop, and is already the Troop life Guard. That said, he's going to have a much easier time at juggling than my younger son, who's about to start an International Baccalaureate program.

                    I don't see how encouraging Eagle before high school is any worse (and it's probably better) than having Life Scouts that drop out for a few years, come back at 17 to Eagle and then leave. That is the general pattern I've seen with Boy Scouts.

                  • Twocubdad
                    Twocubdad commented
                    Editing a comment
                    I can agree with that last point. Earning Eagle in the eighth grade is no better than dropping out in the eight grade and showing a few months before your 18th birthday to finishing checking the box. In both cases you've only been in Scouts for maybe 3.5 or 4 years. My goal for the Scouts I serve is to help them get the most they can from the program. That is accomplished over their full seven or so years of eligibility.

                • #10
                  Forum ate my first reply..... Darn. My unit has a crop of Eagles that have earned the rank since 2011. One is SPL, two are JASM, one ASM. 6 more volunteer when they are available from college. That's not all of the Eagles since 2011, but roughly 3/4ths of the Eagles. However when I grew up in my Troop, Eagle Scouts never stayed with the unit. Most of us currently involved earned it close to turning 18. (Except the SPL and JASMs) We all recommend Scouts earn it earlier. It's not rushing to get done, but moving aggressively before High School Committments, Jobs and other issues steal a Scouts free time. Perdidochas, encourage your son to stay active, even if later in High School he can't make everything. The Scouts will value his experience and guidance. He also helps set a precedent that earning Eagle isn't the end of Scouting.


                  • perdidochas
                    perdidochas commented
                    Editing a comment
                    That's the plan. At this point in my life, I plan to stay as an ASM for a few years after my boys age out (have about 4 yrs with my youngest to age out). I contemplate starting a Venture crew, but may try to start out with a Venture patrol.

                  • Sentinel947
                    Sentinel947 commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Aye. 4 years is a long time to figure that out. It's starting to become a trend in my unit where former ASMs or former Scoutmasters take a small volunteer role with the district after their sons leave Scouting.

                • #11
                  I like Twocubdad's comments....

                  Each District is different, but the idea is the same. The project can be discussed whenever the Scout has the idea (?Tenderfoot?) and wants to talk about it. The project needs to be APPROVED after the boy makes Life, and commenced whenever he has gained the approval and signatures of whomever the District requires. In our District, after he has the "approval" of the agency the project is to benefit, it is "suggested" that the Eagle candidate make his presentation first to the Troop Committee. Any adjustments are made, and then the Scout makes his presentation to the Eagle Coordinators for our area. This is the group that also arranges and schedules the Eagle BoRs . When the EC signs off on it, he may begin actual "construction" or whatever.

                  Best of wishes for your soon-to-be Eagle!



                  • #12
                    There is a Troop in my District that requires Scouts to do the requirements in order. In other words, they won't allow a Life Scout to start his Project until his MBs and PoR requirements are completed (or so I've been told, that is).


                    • Sentinel947
                      Sentinel947 commented
                      Editing a comment
                      I'm pretty sure if a Scout or Parent called them out on that practice they'd be getting a slap on the wrist from the district or council.

                    • perdidochas
                      perdidochas commented
                      Editing a comment
                      Do they do this for all of the ranks? I would be surprised if they ever get eagles.

                    • EagleScout441
                      EagleScout441 commented
                      Editing a comment
                      I don't know about the other ranks, I doubt they do it for Tenderfoot--First Class.

                  • #13
                    Sorry for the tread-jack, but I did not want to start another thread since I think this question might be related.

                    The Eagle workbook requires the draft proposal to be signed off which indicates approval to begin the project. The detailed project plan, while not requiring approval (which I read as rquiring a review and signature), is alledged to be used as the template for the project's execution...or so it would seem from the excerpt below.

                    1. [*=1]It provides sufficient opportunity to meet the Eagle Scout service project requirement. You must show that planning, development, and leadership will take place; and how the three factors will benefit a religious institution, a school, or your community.[*=1]It appears to be feasible. You must show the project is realistic for you to complete.[*=1]Safety issues will be addressed. You must show you have an understanding of what must be done to guard against injury, and what will be done if someone does get hurt.[*=1]Action steps for further detailed planning are included. You must make a list of the key steps you will take to make sure your plan has enough details to be carried out successfully.[*=1]You are on the right track with a reasonable chance for a positive experience.
                    Your proposal need only be detailed enough to show a reviewer that you can meet the tests above. If you find in order to do that, the proposal must be lengthy and complicated, your project might be more complex than necessary.
                    I have found the draft proposals to be too light, despite the fact they meet the requirements outlined above. Because they are light the document does little to help the Scout develop the detail needed for the detailed "final plan". Lastly, when Scouts get those draft plan signatures they are usuall off and running with their projects, perhaps paying only little attention to doing the final plan prior to project execution or even doing it after the fact.

                    So here's my question. I suspect the answer is that the Eagle "coach" (or whatever) should ask to see the final plan before project start. Assuming that is not done, does anyone see a reason why the SM could not ask to see a copy of the final plan before they sign off on the draft plan? How have others handled this?


                    • #14
                      My take on all of this: The draft is not supposed to help the scout with the final plan. It's just supposed to let everybody know that the scout wants to do "project x" and everybody is in agreement with him developing and implementing a plan to do it. It's between the scout and the "Service Project MBC" (sorry, getting sick of the term Eagle Coach) how much feedback he should get and how solid his plan should be before implementation. Different projects require different levels and types of preparation.

                      Thus, the draft is a blue-card of sorts.

                      That said, our district advancement chair is fairly meticulous about projects, and requests that boys meet with him personally. He likes to see drafts in pretty good condition before giving the go-ahead.


                      • #15
                        I start my new boys thinking about their Eagle projects right away when they cross over from Webelos. This way, it gives explanation to why their are organizing a camporee, or why they are doing what they do to get the boys to summer camp, or why they line up and lead a service project, etc. All of these "training" exercises go well in identifying what they are capable of doing and what they might like to do for the big one for Eagle.

                        Secondly it focuses the boys on a long-range plan and the multiple steps along the way that are necessary to learn to lead a project like that. Is there money involved with your project? How well do you like fundraising? Not at all? Then maybe you need to consider something else. You like the service projects? How about doing a really big one because you've learned how to do the small ones.

                        Third, they learn to do the paperwork for each of their little projects so that when the big paperwork comes down the line it's no big surprise.

                        Fourth, through the various service projects and other activities they take leadership on, they network with people who have some really good ideas for Eagle projects.

                        My boys generally are ready to turn in their Eagle project proposal the day after they get their Life rank.