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Striking Gold #3: Understanding JTE program objectives

  June 29, 2018

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In the third article in the Striking Gold: Series on Journey to Excellence, we will discover in greater depth the program objectives. Together, these requirements help measure how well lodge program is supporting its membership. Objectives being discussed in this article include lodge event participation, Brotherhood completion, service projects, and section and national event attendance.

A total of 950 points are available in the JTE program objectives. When setting your lodge goals, remember to review proficiency in the objective from last year’s JTE. Constant improvement is important for your lodge to continue growing.

JTE Program Criteria



Bronze level

Silver level

Gold level

Lodge event participation

Improve lodge membership participation at full lodge events

Average at least 7% of lodge membership at all

lodge-wide events (100 points)

Average at least 10% of lodge membership at all

lodge-wide events (200 points)

Average at least 17% of lodge membership at all

lodge-wide events (450 points)

Brotherhood completion

Convert eligible

youth Ordeal members to Brotherhood

Convert at least 25.4% of eligible youth Ordeal members (50 points)

Convert at least 33.5% of eligible youth Ordeal members (100 points)

Convert at least 50% of eligible youth Ordeal members (200 points)

Service projects

Complete Scout Executive approved service project(s) on council property and in the community

Complete project(s)

equal to at least 4.5

hours of service per

lodge member (50 points)

Complete project(s)

equal to at least 6.5

hours of service per

lodge member (100 points)

Complete project(s)

equal to at least 15

hours of service per

lodge member (200 points)

Section and national event attendance

Attend section and national events

Set and achieve a lodge attendance goal at scheduled section and national events (25 points)

Exceed the lodge

attendance goal by 10% (50 points)

Exceed the lodge

attendance goal by 20% (100 points)


Lodge event participation

Active participation is crucial to measuring the success of a lodge’s program. Lodges should pay particular attention to the participation objective given the weight of each award level (100, 200, and 450 points). Which lodge events are highest attended? How can your lodge improve its events to encourage greater participation? Brainstorming fun activities and constantly implementing new ideas keep members engaged and interested in coming to lodge events.

How do you measure lodge event participation rate? First, sum the attendance of all events where lodge members were invited to attend (e.g. lodge fellowships and banquets) and divide it by the number of full lodge events. The resulting number is the average event attendance. At its discretion, a lodge may also count section events towards full lodge events, but this is optional. By dividing the average event attendance by total lodge membership, the lodge event participation percentage is derived. To perform well in this objective, it is important to keep events new and exciting, as well as develop a solid promotion plan in order to inform and encourage members to attend lodge events.


Brotherhood completion

Many lodges ask, “how can we motivate our Arrowmen to fulfill leadership positions?” One of the best ways is to ensure a strong Brotherhood program, and encouraging eligible members to complete their Brotherhood training. Attaining the Brotherhood honor is more than “sealing your membership” – it’s teaching new members how to become stronger leaders and to become more active in their chapters and lodge. The Brotherhood completion rate is a reliable way to determine what percentage of members are returning after their induction and are staying active. Lodges who have high percentages of newly-inducted Ordeal members returning to events post-induction typically score well on this objective. Remember, this objective only measures youth Brotherhood completion.

The Brotherhood completion percentage is calculated by taking the year’s Brotherhood inductions and dividing it by total eligible Brotherhood candidates (the year’s total Ordeal members, minus the year’s Ordeal inductions, and adding the year’s Brotherhood inductions).

Of course, communication is the largest way to increase your percentage. Inform eligible members via email, social media, phone calls, troop OA representatives, or an extended elangomat program such as NIMAT. Brotherhood receptions at summer camp have also been proven effective.


Service projects

Order of the Arrow lodges serve as “integral parts of the council,” with the responsibility to support council initiatives and to provide service to local Scout units and the community. Service projects exemplify the lodge’s commitment to Scouting in their local areas. Service to the council also helps build a strong and cooperative relationship between the lodge and the council. As the brotherhood of cheerful service, the lodge and its members must set the example by leading a life of cheerful service; this objective encourages us to continue to do so.

Service projects must be tangible and may not include conference calls, time planning events, or meetings. They may consist of both council service projects and community service projects. If you provide service at lodge fellowships, including service conducted during Ordeal induction weekends, you may also count those hours. It is always a good idea to include a summary of your lodge’s service projects in your annual report. You can calculate service hours per member by taking the sum of the length of the projects multiplied their individual attendance, divided by total end-of-year membership.

Section and national event attendance

The Order of the Arrow offers various programs for an Arrowman to experience all that the organization has to offer. The lodges that promote these programs, such as OA High Adventure, section conclaves and the National Order of the Arrow Conference (NOAC) are rewarded based upon the completion set attendance goals.

The goals set by the lodge to encourage members to attend section and national events must be set so that they are more challenging than the prior year. The intent of this criterion is to encourage lodges to set and meet a goal for participation in as many national events as they can support. When creating attendance goals, it is important to factor in event price, distance and membership of your lodge.

Review your lodge’s progress in these objectives and discuss how other lodges have succeeded. By discussing different programs each lodge implements, new ideas may surface to make your program stronger. If your lodge is struggling in one of these objectives, determine what new ideas you can implement to become stronger in the objective.  Collaboration, teamwork and innovation are the keys to continued growth.

Our final article in the JTE series will examine the finance, council support, and leadership objectives. Missed an article in the series? Click the link below to get caught up!

Striking Gold: Series on Journey to Excellence

Article 1: What is JTE?

Article 2: Membership objectives

Journey to Excellence resources:
National JTE Website
Journey to Excellence Guide (PDF)
2018 OA Lodge Performance Recognition Program (PDF)
2017 OA Lodge Performance Recognition Program (PDF)
2017 Chapter Journey to Excellence (Excel)