Merit Badge University (MBU)
MBU Overview

Old Colony Council's MBU event provides over 1000 scouts with the opportunity to complete three merit badges during the month of March each year. Held on three Saturday mornings that month, scouts attend three merit badge classes (~ 1 hour each). A number of badges (such as Aviation) provide field trips during the "off week" to complete out-of-classroom requirements.

For first-year scouts and WEBLOS that crossover prior to the first session, MBU offers a 2 hour flight-to-eagle program, which covers a selection of Tenderfoot, Second Class, and First Class rank requirements. This program helps these younger scouts focus on early rank requirements, while giving them the opportunity to take one merit badge class.

Typically attended by over 100 troops each year, MBU helps scouts gain access to merit badge instruction for badges that are not typically available through their troop's program or offered at summer camp.

To ease pre-event registration and post-event advancement tracking, the MBU all-volunteer staff uses online unit registration and course selection system (DoubleKnot based). Online results reporting is also provided (PDF based). This system lets unit leaders register scouts for the event and receive their results without ever visiting the council office or even attending the event. (But, please do attend with your troop; it is a very good time!)

For 2017 MBU, unit registration and scout class selections may be submitted between January 1 - February 5, 2017.

MBU Step-by-Step Process

Step 1: Hold an MBU planning night in your unit

The MBU scout form lists the badges being offered and provides a scout FAQ, which introduces the event to scouts (and venturers). Print a copy for each youth, and use this form to gather their merit badge choices and other information. Use information in the MBU scoutmaster FAQ for more detailed information about the event.

Step 2: Use the online registration to sign-up your unit for MBU

This online registration system lets you register your unit for the event, select classes for your scouts, and pay online for the number of scouts attending.

Each participating unit is expected to provide at least 1 volunteer merit badge counselor for each 5 scouts attending and provide 1 volunteer hall monitor (or classroom 2nd adult) for each 10 scouts attending. For example, a troop with 10 scouts attending MBU provides 3 adult volunteers. Register your group's adult volunteers at the same time you register your scouts

Step 3: Support your youth's MBU efforts by:

  • Devoting some portion of each March unit meeting to scouts spending time working on MBU homework

  • Helping scouts find resources (troop library, online locations, or others) that they need to use for merit badge completion

  • Creating a supportive atmosphere with scouts-helping-scouts to work together and encourage each other to complete there merit badges

Step 4: Go through the MBU results with each scout after the event

When you receive the MBU results, immediately spend time with each scout going through their results and make sure that the results match their expectations. It is very difficult to track down counselors and class information if you wait for weeks or months after the event to do this important follow-up with your scouts.

MBU Documents

MBU Scout Form -- PDF file to be printed and used in unit. This form lets you gather your scouts course selections, so you can easily enter these during online registration. The form includes a helpful FAQ about MBU for scouts.

MBU Scoutmaster FAQ -- PDF file that answers frequently asked MBU questions (for adult leaders).

MBU Roster Example -- Use this text file template if you would like to import the individual in your group during online registration (mentioned in the Scoutmaster FAQ).

Southeastern VoTech High School map (main level) -- PDF file

Southeastern VoTech High School map (lower level) -- PDF file

Southeastern VoTech High School MBU traffic flow -- PDF file

 

MBU Links

Online Registration -- DoubleKnot online form used to register, select course, and pay for your unit to attend MBU; use the Register button on the form to get started.

Online Registration (adult volunteers) -- DoubleKnot online form used to register adult volunteer counselors and support staff; use the Register button on the form to get started.

Online Counselor Training -- Interactive online training for all MBU counselors (~25 minutes).