Eagle Board of Review – What To Expect
It is very common for a scout to get really nervous for his Eagle Board of Review. I wanted to write a post today about what happens in that Board of Review to help ease this worry. What happens in the Board is not a secret and there are ways to prepare for it. After all, a scout is prepared, right?
My first piece of advice to a scout about to attend his Eagle Board of Review is to remember that you would not have this appointment if you were not ready. By the time your Board of Review is scheduled, so many people have checked and double-checked your project paperwork before this point, you should trust that nothing is missing. If you were missing anything, you would know that before this point.
The second thing to remember is that this is NOT a test! It functions exactly as it is called: a review. You participated in many of these Boards of Review before for all of your previous ranks. This one is no different, except that it is run by the district rather than your unit committee.
The third thing to remember is that the district committee members running the review want you to succeed just as much as you want to succeed, if not more.
Relax and enjoy it. In order to make it to this point, you have already done the work required to attain the rank of Eagle.
Now, let me tell you what typically happens in the Board of Review and provide you some resources to help you prepare for it. Keep in mind, this agenda may vary by district.
- Before the scout comes into the room, the members of the district advancement committee will read through all the project paperwork and all of the letters of recommendation that were sent in by the candidate’s references.
- The Eagle candidate, his family, and scout leader will come into the room to meet the three district advancement committee members. Everyone is introduced to one another.
- The Eagle candidate may be asked to offer a word of prayer to start the Board.
- The scout leader will be asked to introduce the Eagle Candidate to the Eagle Board. This is just a 1-2 minute introduction about the scout.
- Depending on the district committee, they may ask the Eagle candidate to recite the Scout Oath and Scout Law at this point, or they may do this after family members have been dismissed. This recitation is the only thing you are really “tested” on during the Board, so make sure you have it learned and practiced.
- The family will be dismissed to wait outside until the Board of Review is complete. The Unit Leader can stay if the Eagle candidate requests.
- The advancement committee members proceed to ask questions about a variety of things including the Eagle Project, leadership positions, scouting career, merit badges earned, camp-outs, and what you have learned in your scouting journey. None of these should be a test but a review. You will not be required to show them how to tie a knot, or prove that you did anything for a merit badge. This questioning could last as few as 15 minutes or as long as 30 minutes.
- The Eagle Board will dismiss the Eagle candidate to wait outside while they deliberate and discuss the scout’s demonstrated leadership and completed requirements for the Eagle Rank.
- The committee members will invite the candidate back in with his family and scout leader and will inform him whether or not he has passed. In the event that a scout does not pass (which is very rare*), the committee will tell him what he needs to do to complete requirements. If he passed, they will sign the Eagle Application and congratulate him.
- The Board will then offer some instructions on how to hold a court of honor and when to go get the Eagle Award at the scout office. They may also give other words of advice.
The whole process should not last more than 30-45 minutes. Then, for the best part: when your parents take you out for ice cream to celebrate! (Sorry parents.)
There are sample questions at the following website which are typically asked during the Board of Review. Check it out: Preparing for Your Board of Review
*Out of the hundreds of Boards of Review of which I know only two scouts did not pass the final board and this was due to their providing false information on their paperwork.