Personal Development Program Adviser

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Personal Development
Program Adviser

A Varsity Scout Team Personal Development Adviser is a Team Committee member and an adult counterpart to a youth Personal Development Program Manager in the Varsity Scout team. The program adviser serves as a sounding board and adviser as the youth plans and is primary leader for his program.

Typical Varsity Scout team organization chart (click to zoom)
Typical Varsity Scout team organization chart (click to zoom)


Position description

This program adviser mets with the youth program manager. The Varsity Scout acts a primary leader by supervising one or more advancement and award activities; the adviser provides direction and encouragement for these activities. The program manager learns leadership skills by carrying out these activities, and satisfies a requirement for the Denali Award. The other Varsity Scouts on the team may also fulfill a requirement for the Denali Award by active participation in the planned event. The adviser does not need to attend the activity, but approves the activity of the primary leader and determines what is required by the other Varsity Scouts to satisfy "participation."

Worthwhile activities help the Varsity Scouts toward Boy Scout advancement, Varsity Scout Letter and Denali trail advancement. and Scouting awards and merit badges. Activities for the religious award may be also coordinated with the Chaplain Aide.


Appointed by the Team Committee Chairman (can be recommended by the Team Coach). The program adviser can be a parent of a youth member of the chartered organization; in smaller units, the team coach may serve as a program adviser. The chairman along with the team coach meets with the program adviser to review duties.


  • Serves on the team committee.
  • Guides and mentors the youth advancement program manager.
  • Meets with the youth program manager(s) to advise and encourage worthwhile personal development and leadership activities that will help the team advance and the program manager satisfy the Denali requirement.
  • Helps plan activities to meet the requirements of this field of emphasis.
  • Coordinates activities in the five areas of personal development to assure a balance between all Varsity Scout programs.
  • Works with the team committee and other youth program managers to integrate personal development activities into all team events.
  • Locate speakers and consultants who will be informative and helpful to the team.
  • Be familiar with the standards of safety and youth protection in the BSA to keep all activities safe for all participants.
  • Participates in boards of review on a regular basis.
  • Completes all training that is available for the adult Varsity Scout leader.
  • Sets an example for youth members by maintaining the principles of the Boys Scouts of America.


The Personal Development field of emphasis especially encourages the team to fulfill the leadership and participation requirement for the Denali Award.

Please make yourself available to meet the youth program manager, especially for the first time meeting. It is critical to get together with a program manager very soon after he receives this new assignment. Familiarize yourself with the Varsity Scout Team Activity Planning Worksheet; make sure that the Varsity Scout completes one for "event" activities (involving team meetings), and submits it to his Squad Leader.

Working with the youth advancement program manager

The program manager's tenure may be as short as three months, so help him make a plan and get started right away.

Varsity Challenges

Activities can be interteam with other Varsity Scout teams, other Boy Scout troops, or Venturing crews, or with young women. A Varsity Challenge can be sports or a fun competition such as a "Goofy Olympics."


Program helps

Event and ultimate adventure planning

See also

Varsity Scout portal

Varsity awards:

Team Advancement Leaders:

Personal tools