Adult volunteers serving as Merit Badge Counselors must be registered as Merit Badge Counselors with the Boy Scouts of America. They must be men and women of good character, age 18 or older, and recognized as having the skills and knowledge of the Merit Badge subject matter, as well as, the ability to work with youth of Boy Scout age. Merit Badge Counselors can opt to only counsel youth in a troop or council-wide.
Here are the steps to becoming a Merit Badge Counselor:
- Complete the BSA Adult Registration Form (link below.) For the position code, use position “42.” No payment is required for Merit Badge Counselor registration.
- Complete the Merit Badge Counselor Information Form (linked below) Note that some merit badges require additional certification or documentation, as explained on the form.
- Complete Youth Protection Training, if you have not been through the training within the last two years. Print a copy of your completion certificate.
- Complete ALL Pennyslvania required clearances
- Collect the above paperwork and submit it to the Council Office.
- Your registration and forms will be checked for errors and a background check will be processed.
- After approval, the Merit Badge Counselor roster will be updated with your information and the badges you have been approved to counsel.
There is no restriction or limit on the number of Merit Badges an individual may be approved to counsel, however, there will be some review of the appropriateness of badges an applicant has requested to counsel.
All Merit Badge Counselors must be trained (Merit Badge Counselor Orientation) in the aims of Boy Scouting, advancement procedures and complete Youth Protection on-line training Annually.
If you are already a Merit Badge Counselor
You make a difference and your service is greatly appreciated. Each year, Merit Badge Counselors are required to renew their Merit Badge Counselor registration and to indicate their willingness to continue serving as a Merit Badge Counselor.
Additionally, the Boy Scouts of America requires that every adult volunteer complete Youth Protection training in order to remain active and registered. The State of Pennsylvania also requires up-to-date Clearances to serve as a Merit Badge Counselor. If you have updated your clearances recently, please submit your current clearances when responding
You will receive an email in Nov/Dec each year to choose to renew or change the badges you counsel. Please make every effort to respond in a timely manner so you aren’t removed from the roster for 2021.