Most scouts take anywhere from 4 – 6 years on their journey to reaching the Eagle rank, but have you ever wondered what’s the quickest way you could possibly become an Eagle Scout? I know I have. That’s why in this guide, I’ll giving you some insider tips on how to speedrun your path through Scouting, to Eagle!
What’s the fastest path to Eagle? The fastest a new scout can reach the Eagle rank is within 2 years if they stay focused and act proactively. This feat is achieved by attending weeklong camps to earn merit badges and advance in rank. Additionally, a scout trying for a 2-year Eagle should begin planning their Eagle project as early as possible.
PS. This article is based on the experiences and research of Eagle Scouts, Kevin A and Cole 🙂
You may be thinking “If it can be done in only a couple of years, why do most scouts take so long to reach Eagle?” Good question! There are several reasons why getting to Eagle takes a long time for most scouts. However, the biggest is that there are literally hundreds of requirements that need to be met in order to earn the Eagle Scout rank.
I’m guessing though, that you’re not just reading this article because you want to learn the requirements for Eagle… You probably want to learn how to earn Eagle in the quickest way possible! I admire your passion for Scouting, but before you try and embark on this remarkable 2-year journey, I’d like to make some important points:
- I’m sure you’ve heard this before, but Scouting is about the journey, not the destination. What you learn along the way to your Eagle rank is much more important than having your Eagle rank itself.
- For most scouts who reach Eagle, myself included, it takes a long time for the values and skills of Scouting to truly sink in and become second-nature.
- There’s something valuable to be learned at every stage in one’s Scouting journey. Don’t disregard building your leadership skills by focusing too much on earning merit badges and ranking up!
- Whether you’re a Tenderfoot or Life Scout, you are an important part of your troop. Being Eagle is no different! Make sure to stick with Scouting, even if you do undertake the incredible quest for a 2-year Eagle.
- Some Eagle-required merit badges and Eagle project requirements may be extremely difficult for most 13 or 14-year-olds to complete. Expect challenges, and be prepared. If you follow my 5 Keys to Scouting Advancement, your chances of making it in 2 years will be much higher!
On your path to a 2-year Eagle, you’ll also need to be ready to reassure those who are skeptical of you (since you’re advancing so quickly through Scouting!) that you know your stuff. Prove to them that you’re learning things quickly and actually taking the information to heart! To make sure you retain all the knowledge you’ve learned, practice is key. 😉
Warning: To earn your Eagle Scout Rank in two years, you’ll have to make Scouting your #1 priority (besides schooling, of course) and work very quickly. You’ll also need to keep your focus and become extremely organized. Trust me when I say that shooting for Eagle in 2 years is not for the faint of heart!
With all that being said, there’s no reason you can’t learn the values and skills of Scouting quickly. If you have the right mindset and drive, it’s very likely that you could be the kind of scout who earns their Eagle Rank in two years! Below, I’ll be showing you a timeline of what a 2-year journey to Eagle could look like:
A New Scout’s Path to Eagle Scout: The 2-year Timeline
|Time Frame||Milestones To Hit||Tips From an Eagle Scout|
|Approximately 6 months |
(Month 1 – Month 6)
|Earn your Tenderfoot, Second Class, and First Class ranks; be First Class by the end of your 6th month in Scouting.|
Earn 7+ merit badges (at least 4 Eagle-required ones).
Secure a leadership position in your troop for your leadership requirement for your Star rank
|–Go to BSA Summer and Winter camps (you may need to go to multiple summer camp sessions to complete 7 merit badges).|
–By attending troop campouts, you can complete merit badges and have many, many chances to work on requirements for your first three ranks.
–Consider earning the 3 Easiest merit badges in Scouting!
–Create a detailed plan of when and how you plan to complete the requirements for your first three ranks.
–I’d recommend opening blue cards for at least 12 merit badges at this point. Commit to completing them and work on a requirement of your choosing in your free time.
|Approximately 4 months |
(Month 7 – Month 10)
|Work towards your Star Rank; become a Star Scout by the end of your 10th month in Scouting.|
Earn 5 more merit badges (3 of which are Eagle-required)
Secure your next leadership position to satisfy your leadership requirement for your Life rank.
|–Work towards Eagle merit badges that need to be done over long periods of time/over months. (like personal management and personal fitness) |
–Check out my Difficulty Rankings for every Eagle-required merit badge and plan out your order for earning them.
–Regularly speak with your Scoutmasters about your goals and progress. They can be your greatest allies if you keep them in the loop!
–Start thinking about your Eagle Project. Try and create a mock plan for some project ideas.
|Approximately 6 months |
(Month 11 – Month 16)
|Work towards your Life rank; be a Life Scout by the end of your 16th month in Scouting.|
Earn at least 5 more merit badges (at least 3 of which are Eagle-required).
Secure your next leadership position to satisfy your leadership requirement for your Eagle rank.
|–Take leadership within your troop. Always make an effort to do more, and become a Patrol leader (Here’s my guide on How to be a great Patrol Leader)|
–Narrow down your list of possible Eagle Scout Projects. Start reaching out to beneficiaries.
–Write out your Eagle project budget and make changes to the scope of your project, if necessary.
–Start fundraising for your Eagle Project!
|Approximately 8 months |
(Month 17 – Month 24)
|Earn your last 4 merit badges (3 of which are Eagle-required) |
Plan, develop, and carry-out your Eagle Scout Project.
Submit your Eagle Rank application by month 23 and complete your final BOR.
|–Ideally, you would have thought of an Eagle Scout Project and have completed fundraising so that you can hit the ground running. |
–If not, don’t worry! If you put your mind to it, you could definitely complete your entire Eagle project in 8 months.
–Finish up any remaining merit badge requirements. You’ll need to have completed all 21 merit badges before you apply for your Eagle Scout Rank.
–Start planning your final Court of Honor. Also, stay involved in Scouting!
As you can see, getting your Eagle in two years is no simple task! However, there are some key tips that can help you to make this feat more achievable. I’ll be teaching you these principles in the section down below!
Tips to Remember For Earning Your Eagle Rank FAST
- Be proactive! Let your parents, Scoutmasters, and any other adult leaders know that you are planning on getting your Eagle Rank in two years. As long as you show them that you’re going to work as hard as you can towards this goal, they will help you in any way they can.
- Finish rank or merit badge requirements every time you attend a troop meeting. This will require you to meet a counselor before or after your activities, so set aside time for that. You can also check out my guide on How To Organize Merit Badge Counseling Meetings for more help on how to best schedule and run these badge meetings.
- Go on as many camping trips as you can! You’ll need to camp out for quite a few nights to complete the requirements for First-class Rank, as well as for the Camping merit badge. Additionally, there are rank and merit badge requirements that can only be completed while in nature, so you could take the opportunity to complete these requirements while camping.
- This is one of my most important tips: Take advantage of going to weeklong camps whenever you can. Summer camps are the best way to quickly complete merit badges!
While this timeline may seem impossible to stick to, with lots of careful planning and the right mindset, it’s definitely possible to get your Eagle in two years! That being said, be prepared to adapt and change your plans, as you never know what life will throw at you! 🙂
Congrats for reading this far into the article! If you haven’t already, I’d highly recommend you check out the 5 Keys to Quickly Advance in Scouting, where you can learn the best ways to stick to this 2-year timeline! Thanks for making our world a better place through your involvement in Scouting. Come back to ScoutSmarts soon and, until next time, I’m wishing you all the best on your Scouting journey!