A vital part of the BSA's advancement plan, the merit badge program
is one of Scouting's basic character-building tools. Through
participation in the program (which may begin immediately upon
registration in a troop or team), a Scout acquires the kind of
self-confidence that comes only from overcoming obstacles to achieve a
Instruction is offered in everything from animal science and public
speaking to swimming and communications, providing a young man with
invaluable career, physical, and interpersonal skills.