Re: Expensive Wood Badge fee?
Ian Ford (ianford@DIRCON.CO.UK)
Wed, 27 Jul 1994 22:47:55 BST
Wes Clark wrote :
> I just got an invitation in the mail to enter Wood Badge training this
> Fall. Apparently somebody - I don't know who - removed the requirement t
> have been a registered scouter with a troop for at least two years.
> ("Participants must have completed Fast Start and Scoutmastership
> Fundamentals, the basic training courses, and must be registered with a
> troop. The George Washington District Training Chairman will be asked to
> verify your training and eligibility for Wood Badge.") Under these rules,
> I am eligible to register.
Yes, there is discretion to waive the tenure requirement for suitable
> Problem is, there's a $100.00 fee. I don't remember this from previous
> years (maybe I was just unaware of it), and, frankly, I think the cost is
> prohibitive. I won't spend $100.00 of my money - it's needed for other
> things - and it's more than I could ever ask my small troop to fork over
> for. So, I guess I do without.
> Are the participation requirements and the fee in line with what the rest
> of you have elsewhere in the U.S.?
Sorry, but this sounds <very reasonable> for a week-long residential
training experience, or even for the three weekend version. FWIW and by way
of comparison, I did my course at Philmont with Last Frontier Council, OK,
in 1991. I just checked my old bank statements and see that I wrote them a
check for $240 for course fees etc. However, I was an " out of Council "
participant - I don't know if there was any subsidy for the participants
from within Council.
However, if finance is an obstacle, see if there are scholarships available
from your Council or other sources. Or maybe your chartering organisation
will grant aid you ?
As for asking your troop to finance the course, or even part of it, why on
earth not ? IMHO Leader training is an investment in the most important
resource in Scouting - our volunteer Scouters. I firmly believe that when
planning the troop budget this needs to built in. In fact, when we teach
the session on building a budget on SMF this is an item that we tell people
needs to be included - the cost of training adult and junior leaders. I am
sure that parents would agree that their kids benefit from trained leaders.
Is the course worth the money ? Let me put it this way ... I flew from UK
to the US to attend my Wood Badge course (and to do some sight-seeing whilst
I was there, naturally). I've never worked out exactly what it cost me, but
let's just say that there were four figures between the $ sign and the
decimal point. And YES, it was worth every cent ! It was one of the most
meaningful experiences in my life. I've been in Scouting thirty two years,
and that week was one of those MAGIC experiences that remain with me for
the rest of my life, and which bring a lump to the throat when I recall
And the course was at least as good as Gilwell ... I did a Scout course
there in 1977
Incidentally, I was invited to attend as a result of an electronic Scouting
friend I met on either Compuserve or the Internet ( I forget which - at that
time I had both ) He said he was booked on a course at Philmont, and I
asked if I could sign up as well ...
If you get a chance and can sort out the finance - GO FOR IT!
ASM, Troop 401 (American School in London)
Beaver Patrol , SC-425, Philmont 1991
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City