Merit Badges

Counselors: 

The Troop has a multitude of adult volunteers who also act as Merit Badge Counselors. If you are interested in starting a new badge or need to contact a counselor to finish a partial, please see the list below. If you are a counselor and would like your name added (or removed) please email the webmaster.

The list of counselors can be found here.

Procedures: 

Earning Merit Badges allows you to explore many fields, helps you round out your skills, and introduces you to subjects that will perhaps become lifelong interests or a rewarding career.

Citizenship in the Community There are more than 100 Merit Badges for you to choose from. You may earn any Merit Badges at any time, with a Scoutmaster's approval. Don't wait for someone to tell you when and which Merit Badge to work on. You don't need to reach a certain rank in order to be eligible. However, you should concentrate on achieving the rank of First Class before devoting a lot of time to working on Merit Badges.

Don't overwhelm yourself about Merit Badge requirements in the appropriate Merit Badge pamphlets and in current year's Boy Scout Requirements book. Some of these should be available in the Troop 456 library or in the Baltimore County and Howard County Library system. All of them are available from the Baltimore Area Council Scout Shop on Wyman Park Drive or the shop on Connelly Drive. If you are finished with a Merit Badge pamphlet we encourage you to donate it to the Troop 456 Merit Badge book library. Citizenship in the Community

The usual steps to earning a Merit Badge, not including those earned at a Summer Camp or Merit Badge Weekend, are:

  1. Get a blue Merit Badge card from the Advancement Chairperson, Scoutmaster, or the Merit Badge counselor, and fill in your name, address, the name of the badge, and ask a Scoutmaster to sign it. Then get the name and phone number of a qualified counselor from the Arrowhead District Merit Badge counselor list available from one of the Troop Scribes or Quartermasters.
  2. Citizenship in the Community
  3. Call the counselor and set up an appointment or talk to him or her at a Scout meeting to arrange when you can meet with them. This meeting can be at any place that is suitable to both of you. Along with a buddy (another Scout, a family member, or a friend), meet with the counselor. The counselor will explain the requirements for the Merit Badge and help you get started.
  4. Citizenship in the Community
  5. Work on the Merit Badge requirements until you complete them, meeting with t he counselor (along with your buddy) whenever necessary. You must complete the stated requirements and satisfy the standards of each Merit Badge. The Merit Badge counselor may encourage you to do more than the requirements state but he or she may not require it. YOU (not the counselor, Scoutmaster, or Advancement Chairperson) keep the Merit Badge card until you have completed the requirements and the counselor has signed the card. If you lose this card, you may have to start the badge over unless the counselor is willing and able to vouch for what you already completed. If you change counselors for any reason, it is up to the new counselor whether or not he or she will accept the work you did with the previous counselor. Normally the new counselor will ask you a few questions, and if the counselor is satisfied that you actually did the work that was signed off, he or she will accept it.
  6. After you complete the Merit Badge and the counselor signs your Merit Badge card, he or she will keep the counselor's section and return the rest of the card to you. Bring the rest of the card to the Advancement Chairperson, who will keep the Troop section and return the Scout Section to you.

Record Keeping: 

Citizenship in the Community

Your advancement records, as well as your Merit Badge records, are kept in three places- your Council office, the Troop Advancement Chairperson, and yourself. The Council office keeps records supplied to them by the Troop Advancement Chairperson, who also keeps copies of these records for the Troop. There are three types of documents that you need to KEEP IN A SAFE PLACE UNTIL AFTER YOU REACH AGE 18, or receive your Eagle Scout Award, whichever happens last. These documents are: your Boy Scout Handbook with requirements signed off, your sections of completed blue Merit Badge cards, and the wallet-sized certificate cards for rank advancement and Merit Badge completion. Make sure all of them are signed or initialed by the appropriate Scout leader. All of the cards are the same size and can be safely kept in plastic protector pages designed for sports cards. IT IS VERY IMPORTANT THAT YOU KEEP THESE DOCUMENTS IN A SAFE PLACE AND DO NOT LOSE THEM!!!! If it should happen that there is a discrepancy or missing records, your personal records are you most important ally in proving what you completed and when.

Adapted from the USSCOUTS.ORG website.