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Can a 18 year old be a Adult Leader?

Good Afternoon,

I was wondering if a 18 year old could be a Adult Leader. I tried researching it, but no luck.

An individual 18-20 years of age can register as an Assistant Scoutmaster, Merit Badge Counselor, Unit College Scouter Reserve or Unit Scouter Reserve.


I tried to register as a assistant scoutmaster, I was told that my troop didn’t need any. Is that the only way? I know some of those are appointed

It does come down the troop (and their Chartered Organization Rep) needing / wanting you as a volunteer to be registered as ASM or Unit Scouter/College reserve. Talk with the SM about you wanting to be a ASM. Maybe they are saying more ASM’s aren’t need as a soft way of saying no? A conversation would help clear that up. The MBC role is up to the district/council.


Probably a easy no but,

Since I moved far away from my troop, can I join another and be assistant? Sorry if this is a bad question.

There is no restriction on which Troop an individual registers with. You can have a conversation with another troop about registering with them.


So I can be a assistant scoutmaster for another troop? Just making sure I understood.

If another troop wants to register you as an ASM, they can do so.


Ok thank you both for your help!

Have a great day!

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Usually I register an 18 year old (who just “graduated” from either of our troops) to a Unit College Scouter Reserve and let them work with the youth as the SM directs. When they complete the Online SM/ASM training and the Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills (IOLS) classroom to become “Trained” then I will promote to ASM.
This helps with the trained leader statistics for the units.
I am COR for 1 pack & 2 troops


The troop’s response may just be because they don’t know you OR unfortunately they may be making assumptions about your capabilities due to your age. Try contacting the Council Office and asking for the district executive serving your area. They will likely know which units need and want your energy and experience. You might also ask for the contact info for the district commissioner, she or he would also know where best to plug you in. Don’t take “no” as thee last word on you continuing your service to Scouting.
A Council Commissioner


You can join any unit you desire. You do have to be approved by the chartered organization representative. You can even be in multiple units at once. I don’t know why a troop would not want you, but that is a troop concern.

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It’s called a Jr Assist Scoutmaster.

Sorry, not it isn’t. A Junior Assistant Scoutmaster is 16 up until 18. It is a youth position. After 18 the Scout is now a Scouter and no longer can be a JASM.


Junior Assistant Scoutmaster is a youth position of responsibility for 16-17 year-old Scouts.


Assistant Scoutmaster and Unit College Scouter Reserve are positions for 18+ year old adults.


…assuming that we’re only talking about Scouts BSA (Venturers/Sea Scouts can be program participants until they turn 21), and barring any extensions to time for participation in Scouts BSA (e.g. special needs scouting). :^)

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An 18+ year old can also be a merit badge counselor. However, MBC is not a unit-level position,

My bad I was thinking of something else.

The reason for suggesting Unit College Scouter Reserve is that there are no training requirements for that position. If a Unit signs you up as an ASM they will get dinged on JTE for your not being ‘trained’ for your position.
Also, the College Scouter position was specifically set up for someone like you, away, but wanting to come back and help your home unit when you are around. It’s quite likely the SM doesn’t know about that position. It’s realitively new.
You will need to have YPT done to work in any position now that you are old.
If you want to work with a Unit in the area where you now live I’d suggest calling the Council office. Talk to the District Executive who handles your city. They should be able to direct you to a unit which could use your help.
If you are an OA member, you might reach out to the local OA Chapter and Lodge. They might also give advice on how you can help. And, if you are an OA member, remember that that’s a life long memebership.
The other option somewhat mentioned here was Venturing. The age limit as a unit member is up until you are 21. Again your local Council should be able to tell you where those units are.

I’m glad to see that you liked Scouts so much you want to continue in service. That’s a great thing. It shows you learned one of the important lessons Scouts teaches.