"Traditionally, in our unit, when I was Scoutmaster I would consider nominating adults after (0ne year later) their son's became candidates."
A boy has to be a second year scout to be eligible the first time, so you are saying you won't typically consider the adult for nomination until their boy is at least third year scout. By that time, the boy will be about 14 and statistically that's when the average boy will quit scouting. So, I'm guessing you must not nominate very many adults.
Personally, I would just as soon nominate as many as we are allowed to and let them decide how involved they want to be. All the worry over sash-and-dash or conversion numbers seems kinda pointless to me.
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- Oct 2002
A boy who is disinterested enough at 14 to drop out most likely isn't a kid who is going to be on a troop's OA ballot. Aside from the minimum requirements of rank and nights camping, a youth candidate should be a Scout's Scout. The kid with the camping skills everyone else looks up to. The kid who camps regardless of weather or any other hardship. The kid who best exemplifies the Oath and Law. The kid who always provides service to others. That is the boy that the Order wishes to induct and who the election team should point the troop towards when they explain the process. The kid elected to OA "should" be the kid who is in it for the long haul.(This message has been edited by sr540beaver)
The pressure to be more involved in other activities becomes greater as the boys approach and get into high school. Parents and teachers may respect the older scout for his accomplishments, but they are probably not even noticed by their peers in high school. If they are, it is likely to be accompanied by a derisive snicker. However, just because a boy comes to a point where scouting is no longer the priority in his life does not mean before that he was unworthy of election to the OA.
- Jul 2002
A boy does not have to complete two years to become an OA member. My oldest son achieved 1st Class in his first year and was nominated as a candidate (i.e. elected) in February right after he finished his first year. He turned 11 and one month later went through his Ordeal. So by the time he had 19 months under his belt, he was an Ordeal member.
"A boy does not have to complete two years to become an OA member."
That's right. The only mention of 2 years is that the camping requirement must have been met within the 2 years prior to the election. Of course with monthly 2-night over-nighters (except perhaps the month of summer camp), the camping requirements can be easily met in 6 months.
I finished the Ordeal the 17th, went to visit my son this past weekend and had some time to reflect....
Thank you for easing my worries about the ordeal itself. I only hope that I can assist the youth and the community in a manner that will bring praise to the OA. I have heard from some members that this lodge is week in wanting to support anything but dance. I hope to suggest some changes by getting them involved with Cubs (Webeloree/Cuboree) and with the junior scouts (ideal campsite at camporee with alternate mistake ridden campsite). Of course I hope they will allow me to be involved as well, but it is their program.
We will see if I can help at all...
Thank you again.
- Nov 2002
- Sep 2008
Yes, welcome Rick!
If I may add on to a couple points of Eric (BTW, he is our District/Chapter advisor and done the best job since yours truly held the position a bunch of years ago [vbg!]).
Arrowmen are to serve their home Troop first, whether as a youth or adult. That is our first priority.
For the youth, we promote to the Troops to vote youth into the lodge that show exceptional Scouting abilities. As the lodge, we can take those youth and provide more opportunities to practice and learn more about application and lessons of applying the Oath, Law, and Obligation into their daily lives. We also work in there the constant message/practice/thoughts of servant leadership that they will hopefully take with them for the rest of their lives.
But the next aspect can be very difficult for non-OA adult members to understand: the adult selection criteria are very different. Of course we want adults to exemplify the Oath and Law and that are already good role models; should go without saying. But beyond that, we are looking for adults that are willing to be involved and assist in guiding the youth of the lodge to support the program of the lodge. Think of the patrol method being applied on a larger scale with bigger events and more intensely focusing on the Oath & Law. We need people that can be active advisors to support the youth and assist in making things happen.
Sometimes this understanding never sinks in. IMHO, I'm convinced that this is why there aren't many type A personalities in the OA: the Scoutmaster that doesn't get 'boy-lead', is too impatient, or has a my way or the highway approach, because those types typically cant tolerate the inefficiencies of youth leaders running things. That type can manhandle his way through a Troop with 11 to 14 year olds (ie Eagle mills that have no active older Scouts), but that won't bode well with 16-20 years olds that are a little more opinionated
Ive counseled over the years complaints about why adult nominees werent selected by the lodge. The leaders keep focusing on their nominees Scouting resume and could not believe he wasnt qualified or 'deserved' to be selected. But then they couldnt tell me if that Scouter would ever attend another Ordeal after his own. Or go to a single chapter meeting. Or assist in OTHER units elections. Or commit to making sure Arrowmen would get rides to events. Or what skill he would be willing to assist in advising a youth in that WASNT his son. Think about those questions when considering adult nominations.
As we like to say, being in the Order is about stepping up to what we are expected to do, not what we have already done. Hope this helps some.
OA adult advisor and gadfly of Sipp-O Lodge #377
(This message has been edited by jtswestark)
- Jan 2007
Congrat's. As Jack said, now follow through with offering the youth assistances with getting around to events, meetings, and elections.
The Chapter Advisor shouldn't be the only person getting dumped on to run the Chapter. A couple of assistants is very helpful. Working 3-11PM shift, I relied heavily on 3 other adults that were willing to split up election team duties four ways. Otherwise the elections would have never been completed. Jack was one of those three.
Ask your Chapter Advisor what kind of assistance he/she needs. The LEC and it's advisors is usually pretty strong. The Chapters seem to be where there are problems, abd need the most help. Good luck, and welcome.(This message has been edited by ASM915)
jtswestark: "Ive counseled over the years complaints about why adult nominees werent selected by the lodge. The leaders keep focusing on their nominees Scouting resume and could not believe he wasnt qualified or 'deserved' to be selected. But then they couldnt tell me if that Scouter would ever attend another Ordeal after his own. Or go to a single chapter meeting. Or assist in OTHER units elections. Or commit to making sure Arrowmen would get rides to events. Or what skill he would be willing to assist in advising a youth in that WASNT his son. Think about those questions when considering adult nominations."
Thanks for that great explanation, Jack. Maybe you could also explain why there are so few vigil honors awarded and why such a high percentage of them are adults. Also, it seems like very few unit level leaders get vigil honor even though they talk about our first duty being with the troop. It seems to be mostly reserved for chapter and lodge officers and chapter advisers and district camping directors. Yeah, I know that those are usually the people who've done the most for the lodge, but there are people who do a lot to promote the OA within their troop who don't seem to get any recognition for it.
- Aug 2009
"Guide to Officers and Advisers
The Vigil Honor is a high mark of distinction and recognition reserved for those Arrowmen who, by reason of exceptional service, personal effort, and unselfish interest, have made distinguished contributions beyond the immediate responsibilities of their position or office to one ore more of the following: their lodge, the Order of the Arrow, scouting or their scout camp. Under no circumstances should tenure in scouting or the Order of the Arrow be considered as reason enough for a Vigil Honor recommendation"
My guess would be that maybe the members on the nominating committee don't personally know the people that are just active at the unit level.
- Nov 2005
Excellent advice already.. To add just a few of my comments,
You stated that there are some adult Arrowmen in your troop, but they received OA recognition during their own youth. But it sounds like there has not been an adult election/nomination in the past few years.
The Scoutmaster assist the SPL and PLC with the program, to include inviting and scheduling a Chapter/Lodge election team visit. But it should be on the Troop Committee Chair's agenda to inquire the eligibility of the adults, and conduct an adult election.
I've seen about 95 percent of troops conduct election during the schedule election period of the year. I have also seen the final 5 percent of units that would not invite the election team, then request the Summer Camp staff to conduct an impromtu election. Why they do something like this, I don't understand. It harms the Chapter's performance and usually misses eligible youth and adults from the election. But for those that schedule elections IAW Lodge bylaws and invite an election team, they should have an adult election on the Committee's agenda during the previous month.
A few fellow forum members commented on adults in the OA and lodge. It is a youth based program, but a few of the greatest needs after the Advisors are drivers and cooks. Most Arrowmen do not drive yet. So having adults that will haul 4 seatbelted youth from event to event is a great service. The more drivers the better!
Hopefully, your Committee will place adult OA election on the agenda during your next OA election season.
Scouting Forever and Venture On!
- Jan 2009
A previous poster stated: "This year, not being involved with a Troop (I am DAC), the District nominated me and I received my letter."
I thought only Adult Leaders who were active with a Boy Scout Troop could be nominated for OA membership - at least that's what we've been told in our District. We have several great Scouters who have spent quite a few years focusing their attention on Cub Scout Packs and whenever someone has tried to nominate them for OA they have been told that Cub Scout Leaders are not eligible. There are several Cub Scout Leaders who are OA members because they earned it as a youth but these worthy Scouters are told they never can be.
My question is that since you are no longer involved with a troop how were you nominated for OA. Does each Council, District, or Lodge have different rules regarding this?