Leadership Development

University of scouting

University of Scouting is an annual supplemental training conference providing unique opportunities for Scout leaders and Scouts. We bring together volunteers from across the council eager share their expertise across the whole spectrum of Scouting program areas. Whether you are new to Scouting or an experienced veteran, you’ll find interesting courses designed to enhance your ability to serve our youth through the Scouting programs. Browse the most recent course catalog at https://ocbsa.org/uofs!


IOLS, Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills is a required training for Scoutmasters and Assistant Scoutmaster to be fully trained on the positions. 

The program is typically offered over a weekend and covers topics such as camping techniques, cooking, first aid, map and compass skills, and Leave No Trace principles. Participants learn hands-on skills and gain knowledge that can help them lead successful outdoor adventures for their Scout troops or other groups.

BALOO stands for Basic Adult Leader Outdoor Orientation. It is a training for Cub Scout leaders acquire the skills and knowledge they need to plan and conduct safe and fun outdoor activities with their Cub Scout packs.

The program covers a wide range of topics, including planning and conducting a campout, health and safety considerations, age-appropriate activities, and Leave No Trace principles. Participants also learn about the resources and support available to them through the BSA.

Completion of the BALOO training is required for at least one adult leader on every Cub Scout pack overnight outdoor event. The program helps to ensure that leaders have the skills and knowledge they need to provide a safe and enjoyable outdoor experience for Cub Scouts.

The Rancho San Joaquin District will next offer these courses of the following dates:

Please check the the Orange County Council Training Calendar for alternate dates of nearby District courses.


NYLT stands for National Youth Leadership Training. It is a week-long leadership development program for Scouts of ages 14-17.

The program focuses on teaching advanced leadership skills through hands-on training, team-building activities, and simulations. Participants learn to lead by example, communicate effectively, set goals, solve problems, and inspire others to follow their lead. They also learn to apply these skills to their lives both inside and outside of Scouting.

Orange County Council will offer the NYLT course as a week-long Summer camp and again over the two weekends in the Fall:

More info on NYLT from Orange County and BSA National Councils.

Wood badge

Wood Badge is an advanced leadership development program for adult Scout leaders. The program aims to provide participants with a deeper understanding of Scouting, leadership principles, and team building.

Wood Badge consists of two parts: a practical, hands-on training phase, and a project phase. During the training phase, participants engage in a variety of activities, including games, simulations, and outdoor challenges. They learn about leadership styles, communication skills, conflict resolution, and goal setting.

The project phase requires participants to apply what they learned during the training phase to a real-world project. This project typically involves creating and leading a team to complete a significant project that benefits Scouting and the community.

Orange County Council will offer the Wood Badge course over the two weekends in the Fall:

Weekend #1: September 20-22, 2024 (Friday, Saturday & Sunday)

Weekend #2: October 4-6, 2024 (Friday, Saturday & Sunday)

More info on Wood Badge from Orange County and BSA National Councils.