By Darryl Alder
Oct 30, 2013

Timberline – National Youth Leadership Training for all Youth

Nathan Foster

“If it wasn’t for National Youth Leadership Training, I wouldn’t be going on a mission. Before I went to NYLT I was not headed in the right direction. The skills I learned, the brotherhood I shared, the goals I made at NYLT all gave me the confidence and direction at a critical time in my life.” Nathan Foster

BSA’s objectives for youth are character, citizenship and fitness. The way we get to these objectives is through time tested methods. For Ventures, Boy and Varsity Scouts there are 7 to 10 methods but common among each is leadership development.

Youth leadership training in BSA is a three-phase training experience, and a common thread will connect all three phases. The first phase begins in the troop, team or crew with the senior patrol leader, captain, or president leader and the unit’s adult leaders conducting the training. Phase two is Timberline-NYLT conducted by the local council, and the third phase is advanced training, a weeklong experience at Philmont Scout Ranch.


Flag ceremony is part of the daily program at NYLT courses nation-wide

Timberline-National Youth Leadership Training is an exciting, action-packed program designed to provide all 13 to 20 year old youth members of the Boy Scouts of America with leadership skills and experience they can use in their home units and in other situations demanding leadership of self and others, Notice I wrote youth, that’s because this program has been co-ed for several years now and lends itself well to a leadership themed youth conference or young women’s camp.

The Timberline-National Youth Leadership Training Course centers around the concepts of what a leader must BE, what he must KNOW, and what he must DO. The key elements are then taught with a clear focus on HOW TO. The skills come alive during the week as the patrol goes on a Quest for the Meaning of Leadership.

Timberline NYLT

Timberline NYLT program patrol posting colors in a daily flag ceremony. May courses follow this with a daily devotional of some kind.

Timberline-NYLT is a six-day course. Content is delivered in a troop and patrol outdoor setting with an emphasis on immediate application of learning in a fun environment. Interconnecting concepts and work processes are introduced early, built upon, and aided by the use of memory aids, which allows participants to understand and employ the leadership skills much faster.

Built on the legacy of past successes, Timberline-NYLT integrates the best of modern leadership theory with the traditional strengths of the Scouting experience. Through activities, presentations, challenges, discussions, and audio-visual support, NYLT participants will be engaged in a unified approach to leadership that will give them the skill and confidence to lead well. Through a wide range of activities, games, and adventures, participants will work and play together as they put into action the best Scouting has to offer.

A major objective of Timberline NYLT is to give participants a working knowledge of advanced leadership skills, and help them relate these skills to their home and troop responsibilities.  Scouts also have a wide range of opportunities to share ideas and experiences with Scouts from other troops. Leadership requires vision, goals, planning, and team work.  These are taught throughout the week in various settings including presentations, games, and hands-on experiences.  The skills learned during the course also help prepare Scouts for fatherhood and lifetime leadership roles.  Timberline NYLT is training up our youth today to be America’s leaders of tomorrow!

Why not make your next youth conference a leadership development event?



Author: Darryl Alder | Director of Support Services, Utah National Parks Council, BSA. Contact Lance Lemon or Ryan Bertram to arrange for you specialized event.


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