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Want to do Wood Badge / SM says wait till next year

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rhol, I had similar concerns to yours, prior to signing up for WB21C. Things worked out just fine...I went into the course with a list of things that I wanted to do regardless of my ticket, and they just so happened to be formed into a ticket, along with quite a few other things I hadn't dreamed up, as I went through the process.


Many of the ideas you have are a good start. I've heard similar stories about other tickets. For example, one patrol-mate signed up for Wilderness First Aid (he's an ASM). Our troop guide had started up a Venturing crew for his own ticket (and now he's a 'go to guy' for Venturers in our council). A guy in another patrol organized a high adventure trip for his troop. Part of the ticket entry was to present a segment on planning a high adventure trip at the local University of Scouting. I went to that session, and it was interesting. They did a multi-day canoe trip in the Delaware Water Gap.


As others have said, your ticket is personal to your vision. Do you see Venturing in your future? Or would you be satisfied with mentoring an active venture patrol within your troop? That kind of thing.


On my own ticket, broadly speaking, I had items to strengthen our troop and to strengthen myself. Not only for the present (supporting actual youth leadership within the troop), but for my anticipated next step (I'm probably going to be the next CC of the troop), and a role I think I would like to eventually move in to (district training). One small part of one item was to earn the training award (as an ASM).


I finished my ticket back in March, taking the full 18 months for what I think ended up being a very ambitious ticket. My troop guide/counselor definitely pushed me to stretch a little, and I did. I think I'm better off for it, and I think there are tangible results. My patrol opted to be beaded together, which is going to happen early next month.



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I signed up for WB after about a year as an adult leader. I had been both a cub scout & boy scout as a youth.


In my patrol there was a mix of experienced scouters and newer scouters.


I got a lot out of the two weekends. Certainly, there were times that I probably would have gotten slightly more out of the sessions if I'd had a few more years of leader experience. However, I think it was good for me to start the program when I did.


Now that you're signing up, my free nuggets of advice to you are:

- don't not think about WB as just the ticket. It's so much more than just the ticket.

- embrace the program. Get all you can from it. Sure there are parts that you probably know better than the instructors. Sure, there are parts that are a bit corny. Sure, there are parts that might not be 100% relevant to what you do. Leave those feelings at the door and have FUN! After all, how often do you get to spend 6 days focusing on being a better scouter?

- don't research the specifics of the program ahead of time. Sure, ask questions about how to prepare or what to bring. But, don't go out and find out what you'll do on day one, day two, etc... The program is built in a way that expects you don't have this info and is better when you don't. One of the prior attendees in my pack (unsolicited) told me some info ahead of time. When I got done with the training, I really wished he hadn't.

- meet people. Many of these people (be it instructors or participants) are people you'll interact with throughout your time in scouting. From my district, there were 7 people who went - only one from my pack. I see them often enough (roundtables, district meetings, trainings, etc...). Spending 6 days with them is a great way to get to know them.

- when you design your ticket, remember that a good part of WB is about leadership. Be sure to think about your ticket now just as "I will do X or attend training Y", but instead that you will put in place a program to accomplish your goals and leverage others to help you do it.

- design a challenging, yet achievable ticket. I'm about half way through my ticket now. It has been very challenging for me. Not so much because of the effort required, but because it requires me to do things I'm not usually comfortable with. Frankly, when I got back from my second weekend, I really thought I could never complete the ticket. But, then I started chipping away at it. Now, 9 months later, I'm at least half way through and the stuff I have left I now see as achievable (but still not easy). It's been a great growth opportunity for me.


Good luck!

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Pursue Woodbadge. It is excellent training on par with Disney. You get out of it what you put into it. Your scoutmaster (like some I've encountered) usually have ulterior reasons for keeping you from advancing. Get all the training you can. Who would NOT want the best assistants or support from within their circle of parents in their troop?


I was continuously told forget it. I was even told I had to have an invitation and those were already handed out. Then I called the course director who happened to train me for Webelos camp years before. He was joyful to have another person take the course. They were not set to fill up. In fact, two of the invitees from my former troop never showed up after payment was made.


If I had gungho parents willing to achieve more to serve the scouts I say YES!


You are a blessing to any scout who achieves based on your guidance, support or service as a role model. Just go over his head. If he has a problem with that he isn't much of a scoutmaster.


I learned the hard way to stop begging permission and start acting on my conscience. We have a lot happier scouting families because we did.

In a new troop that is inclusive and encourages initiative.


Good luck.

PS the course is not hard. It's actually a lot of fun. Take good notes and be ready for anything. It's the best training you will get as an adult.

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