Merit Badges and Counselors
Upcoming Merit Badge Opportunities:
Saturday, April 15, 2023
9:30 a.m. OR 1:30 p.m.
Each session will last about 1.5 hours.
Spring 2023 Charlotte AutoFair
Charlotte Motor Speedway
April 21 - 23, 2023
Camp Grimes - Mecklenburg Scout Reservation
Save the Date!
Saturday, July 30, 2023
Charlotte Stamp Show at Central Piedmont Community College Central Campus
Saturday, September 9, 2023
Fall 2023 Charlotte Auto Fair at Charlotte Motor Speedway
Friday-Saturday-Sunday, October 13-14-15, 2023
Saturday, October 21, 2023
Saturday, November 18, 2023, 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Central Piedmont Community College Harper Campus
Friday-Saturday-Sunday, December 15-16-17, 2023
Belk Scout Camp
Schedule Your Own Merit Badge Courses
Merit Badge Courses at the McDowell Nature Preserve
Troops or patrols can schedule group merit badge instruction with BSA-registered counselors on staff at McDowell Nature Preserve. Their schedule is open for the fall of 2022. They offer these merit badge courses:
- Environmental Science
- Insect Study
- Mammal Study
- Reptile and Amphibian Study
- Soil and Water Conservation
- Wilderness Survival
Minimum class size is 8.
Maximum class size is 15.
Cost may range from $15 to $40 per Scout, depending on the merit badge and on scheduling for single-day or multi-day sessions.
Camping is available on site.
For more information and scheduling, please contact Ms. Catherine Robertson, Environmental Educator, at 980-314-1128 or at Catherine.Robertson@mecklenburgcountync.gov
Scuba Diving Merit Badge
(within Mecklenburg County Council)
Lake Norman Scuba LLC
482 River Hwy., Mooresville, NC 28117
Mr. Andrew Katsamas is a registered Scuba Merit Badge Counselor with Mecklenburg County Council. Pre-course requirements: Completion of Swimming Merit Badge and of CPR training. Course completion requires 6 hours of pool instruction each day for 1 weekend and 6 hours of quarry diving instruction each day for 1 weekend and a 1-hour review with the counselor.
Online Merit Badge Courses
(Out of Council)
Architecture * Landscape Architecture * Soil and Water Conservation * Sustainability
- BSA Merit Badge Zoom: Classes With Erin McCown Foster (Facebook page for signing up for Ms. Foster's classes.)
- How this merit badge counselor helped 450 scouts earn one of the 10 rarest badges
Merit Badge Counselors
A merit badge counselor serves as both a teacher and mentor as Scouts work on a merit badge. In one way, he or she is an examiner. In a larger sense, the counselor uses this opportunity for coaching—helping Scouts overcome the hurdles of the different requirements and making Scouts aware of the deeper aspects of the subject from their knowledge and experience. Because of these unique opportunities to serve Scouts, volunteering as a merit badge counselor is one of the most gratifying experiences for adults in Scouting today.
Boy Scouts of America. A Guide for Merit Badge Counseling. 2018. filestore.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/512-065.pdf
Merit Badge Counselor Registration Instructions
Even if an adult is currently registered with a troop as a committee member or as a uniformed leader, they still need to register with a new Adult Application for their new role as merit badge counselor in addition to other registrations.
To register as a Scouts BSA Merit Badge Counselor with our Mecklenburg County Council, an adult age 18 or older must
1. Be current on BSA (Boy Scouts of America) Youth Protection within the last 2 years
(go to https://my.scouting.org/, sign in or register, then click on upper right Youth Protection logo, complete Youth Protection course modules, and print certificate)
2. Be registered as a BSA volunteer by completing and signing the BSA Adult Application form
3. Be registered as a Merit Badge Counselor by completing Merit Badge Counselor Information form.
Please send all 3 documents by USPS to
Mecklenburg County Council
1410 East 7th Street
Charlotte, NC 28204
704 333 5471
email your BSA Youth Protection certificate, your original online completed BSA Adult Application form with e-verified signatures on page 3 and on page 9 for Background Check Authorization, and your completed Merit Badge Counselor Information Form to firstname.lastname@example.org
Original or e-verified signatures on an original BSA Adult Application form, including page 3 and the Background Check Authorization on page 9, will allow a background check.
Information on BSA background check policy
Merit badge counselors do not pay a registration fee.
4. Beginning in January of 2024, Mecklenburg County Council will require that all merit badge counselors complete Merit Badge counselor BSA on-line training modules.
Current Counselors and new Counselors registering during 2023 are encouraged to complete on-line training now. Here are the steps:
Log in at https://my.scouting.org/
Click on BSA Learn Center
Click on Course Catalog, search for: “Merit Badge”
This is a list of the on-line modules:
Introduction To Merit Badges Total time: 8m
Scouts BSA - Merit Badge Counselor Position Specific Training, Total time: 34m
Scouts BSA - Merit Badge Counselors - Before First Meeting, Step 1, Total time: 24m
Scouts BSA - Merit Badge Counselors - Position Trained, Step 2, Total time: 10m
What Is A Merit Badge Counselor, Total time: 7m
Counselors must complete the Introduction to Merit Badges module, Step 1 and Step 2 modules comprising the Merit Badge Counselor Position Specific Training course, and the What Is A Merit Badge Counselor module. After a counselor completes these training courses, repeat training is not required for yearly merit badge counselor renewals.
Merit Badge Counselors must renew their registrations as Counselors every year in November and must remain current on BSA Youth Protection. Counselors should look for information about renewing their merit badge lists in November and December of each year.
Merit Badge Counselor Resources:
Merit Badge Counselor Application
Merit Badge Limit
While we really appreciate your enthusiasm and desire to share your knowledge with the Scouts in Mecklenburg County Council, the advancement committee has decided to limit merit badge counselors to teach a maximum of 16 merit badges. The advancement committee came to this decision based on the desire to give Scouts the opportunity to work with a variety of merit badge counselors throughout their Scouting career. We believe that working with a variety of merit badge counselors provides Scouts a more enriching experience as they learn to adapt to varying teaching styles and have more opportunities to work on their interpersonal skills. We recommend that you pick merit badges that fall into your strongest areas of expertise. Cases of extenuating circumstances will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis at the next available advancement committee meeting.
Mecklenburg County Council Advancement Committee
The following merit badges require additional qualifications or certifications as decided by the advancement committee to improve safety and to manage risks:
To renew your counselor registration for any of these 12 badges please be ready to provide verification of your current qualifications. More information on this topic can be found in the Guide to Advancement.
Merit Badge Counselor Registration Renewal
Your MBC registration expires 12/31 every year. Don’t forget to renew it!
It’s as easy as…
Check your email. In November you will receive an email with a survey link, your member ID number, and which merit badges you are currently registered to teach.
Fill out and submit your survey between November 1st and December 1st. By completing the short survey you will be able to update your contact info, availability, add/remove merit badges, and renew your MBC commitment.
Reply to follow-up. You may receive follow-up communications from the merit badge approval committee. Be sure to respond promptly so that your registration does not get held up.
Movies for Merit Badge Advancement
These merit badges include requirements that can be fulfilled by watching movies:
- American Heritage
- American Labor
- Citizenship in the Community
Below are links to lists of movies that may be applicable to requirements from each of these merit badges. Before a Scout watches any of these movies or any other movie, whether for merit badge work or for school or for entertainment, the Scout must receive permission from their parents. Before a Scout watches any movie for merit badge work, the Scout must also have permission from their merit badge counselor.
American Heritage Requirement 5a
5. Do ONE of the following: (a) Watch two motion pictures (with the approval and permission of your counselor and parent) that are set in some period of American history. Describe to your counselor how accurate each film is with regard to the historical events depicted and also with regard to the way the characters are portrayed.
See what movies other Scouters reccommend for American Heritage
American Labor Requirement 5c
5. Do ONE of the following:
(c) With your counselor’s and parent’s approval and permission, watch a movie that addresses organized labor in the United States. Afterward, discuss the movie with your counselor and explain what you learned.
View a list of Best Union Movies by IMDB
Citizenship in the Community Requirement 5
5. With the approval of your counselor and a parent, watch a movie that shows how the actions of one individual or group of individuals can have a positive effect on a community. Discuss with your counselor what you learned from the movie about what it means to be a valuable and concerned member of the community.
Recommended to consider: October Sky, Remember the Titans, Mr. Holland’s Opus, Follow Me Boys
Check out these other reccommendations by:
Reading Requirement 3
3. Read four different types of books, such as poetry, fiction, nonfiction, or biographies. Do any ONE of the following for each book you have read:
(a) Write a review of the book. Include what you liked/didn’t like about the book. Include if you would recommend this book, and if so, who might enjoy reading it.
(b) Watch a movie based on the book. What was the same between the book and movie? What was different? Which did you enjoy more? Discuss this with your merit badge counselor.
(c) Give a “book talk” to your class, troop, or patrol.
100 Movies that Every Scout Should See
a list published by Scout Life. (formerly Boys' Life)
(Some suggestions will require parental guidance.)
100 Books that Every Scout Should Read
a list published by Scout Life. (formerly Boys' Life)
(Some suggestions will require parental guidance.)
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