Boy Scouts of America, Greater Colorado Council

The 12 Steps from Life to Eagle

The following 12 steps have been outlined to ensure a smooth procedure for the Scout, the unit leadership, the local council, and the volunteers who are to conduct the board of review. Eagle candidates should share these steps with their unit leader so that they can fully understand the procedures that must be followed. The following are guidelines for Life to Eagle rank. For more specific information, please contact your district advancement chair.

  1. In order to advance to the rank of Eagle, a candidate must complete all requirements of tenure; Scout spirit, merit badges, positions of responsibility; while a Life Scout, plan, develop, and provide leadership to others in a service project, and the Scoutmaster conference. 
  2. Using the Eagle Scout Leadership Service Project Workbook, the candidate must select an Eagle service project and have the project concept approved by the unit leader, the unit committee, and the benefactor of the project, and reviewed and approved by the council via your district advancement committee. The current version of the workbook must be used in meeting this requirement. 
  3. Projects may not be fundraisers. Fundraising is only permitted for securing materials and otherwise facilitating a project. Also, please note that if your project requires completion of the Eagle Scout Service Project Fundraising Application (which is in your Eagle Service Project Workbook), your District Advancement Committee is the appropriate person to contact for “Authorized Council Approval”. 
  4. It is imperative that all requirements for the Eagle Scout rank, except the board of review, be completed prior to the candidate’s 18th birthday. (Youth members with disabilities should meet with their unit leader regarding time extensions, prior to their 18th birthday.) When all requirements except the board of review for the rank of Eagle, including the leadership service project, have been completed, the Eagle Scout Rank Application must be completed and sent to the council service center promptly. Eagle application, note following requirement #6, asks for two attachments: a statement of your ambitions and life purposes, along with a listing of your non-Scouting positions, honors, and awards. 
  5. The application should be signed by the unit leader at the proper place. The unit committee reviews and approves the record of the Eagle candidate before the application is submitted to the local council. If a unit leader or unit committee fails to sign or otherwise approve an application, the Eagle candidate must still be granted a board of review. For details see “Initiating Eagle Scout Board of Review under Disputed Circumstances”, Guide to Advancement 2019, 
  6. When filling out Requirement 2 on the Eagle Application, be sure names, addresses, and telephone numbers are current. Be sure the persons you list know you personally. Don’t list the Pastor of your church as your religious leader if he or she doesn’t know you personally. Be sure to fill in all references, except the “Employer” if you don’t have one. There are specific requirements for writing the religious letter of reference if you don’t have a religious leader (your parents need to write the letter), and the supplemental instructions are in your Eagle packet. Letters of Reference should come to the District Board of Review unopened. The best way to achieve this is that when you distribute the Letters of Reference forms is to include a pre-addressed stamped envelope (to your Scout Master), and include on the outside in the lower left corner “Letter of Reference for (your name)”. That way your Scout Master will know what it is and will not open it. Link to the Greater Colorado Council “Letter of Recommendation” form: Letter of Recommendation. Reference letters are confidential, and their contents are not to be disclosed to any person who is not a member of the board of review. 
  7. The Eagle Scout Leadership Service Project Workbook, properly filled out, must be submitted with the application. When the completed application is received at the council service center, its contents will be verified. 
  8. After the contents of an application have been verified and appropriately signed, the application, Eagle Scout Leadership Service Project Workbook, will be returned from the council service center to the Scout so that a board of review may be scheduled. Under no circumstances should a board of review be scheduled until the application is has been checked at the council service center. 
  9. The board of review for an Eagle candidate is composed of at least three but not more than six members. One member serves as chairman. Unit leaders, assistant unit leaders, relatives, or guardians may not serve as members of a Scout’s board of review. The board of review members should convene at least 30 minutes before the candidate appears in order to review the application, reference checks, and leadership service project report. At least one district or council advancement representative must be a member of the Eagle board of review if the board of review is conducted on a unit level. A council or district may designate more than one person to serve as a member of Eagle boards of review when requested to do so by the unit. It is not required that these persons be members of the advancement committee; however, they must have an understanding of the importance of the Eagle board of review. 
  10. The candidate’s unit leader introduces the candidate to the members of the board of review. The unit leader may remain in the room but does not participate in the board of review. The unit leader may be called on to clarify a point in question. In no case should a relative or guardian of the candidate attend the review, even as a unit leader. There is no set of questions that an Eagle candidate should be asked. However, the board should be assured of the candidate’s participation in the program. This is the highest award that a Scout may achieve and, consequently, a thorough discussion of the candidate’s successes and experiences in Scouting should be considered. After the review, the candidate and the unit leader leave the room while the board members discuss the acceptability of the candidate as an Eagle Scout.

The decision must be unanimous. If the candidate meets the requirements, the Scout is asked to return and is informed that he or she will receive the board’s recommendation for the Eagle Scout rank. If the candidate does not meet the requirements, he or she is asked to return and told the reasons for the failure to qualify. A discussion should be held with the candidate as to how the Scout may meet the requirements within a given period.

Should the applicant disagree with the decision, the appeal procedures should be explained. A follow-up letter must be sent to the Scout confirming the agreements reached on the action(s) necessary for the advancement. If the Scout chooses to appeal, the board should provide the name and address of the person or persons to contact. (See “Appealing a Decision” in the Guide to Advancement 2019.

  1. Immediately after the board of review and after the application has been appropriately signed, the application and a properly completed Advancement Report are returned to the council service center. When the application arrives at the council service center, the Scout executive signs it to certify that the proper procedure has been followed and that the board of review has recommended the candidate for the Eagle Scout rank.

Only the Eagle Scout Rank Application is forwarded to the National Eagle Scout Service.

  1. The Eagle Scout Service screens the application to ascertain information such as proper signature, positions of responsibility, tenure between ranks, and age of the candidate. Any item not meeting national standards will cause the application to be returned for more information. If the application is in order, the Scout is then certified as an Eagle Scout by the Eagle Scout Service on behalf of the National Council. Notice of approval is given by sending the Eagle Scout certificate to the local council. The date used on the certificate will be the date of the board of review. The Eagle Award must not be sold or given to any unit until after the certificate is received by the council service center. The Eagle Scout court of honor should not be scheduled until the local council receives the Eagle Scout rank credentials.
For more information, go to the BSA National Council website.

Eagle Application