GNFC - TrainingSupplemental Training

Supplemental Training Information

Below is basic information on different training courses offered for Scouts and leaders.

  • Check the Upcoming Training Activities and Events list on the right side of this page to see when specific local training sessions are scheduled.
  • ONLINE training is available "on-demand" through
BSA Aquatics Supervision
  • Paddle Craft Safety
    • Expands on Safe Swim Defense course to include the basic skills and knowledge needed for a unit leader to supervise flat-water canoe trips
    • Open to BSA adults and youth age 16 and over
    • Conducted by council-approved instructor, valid for three years
    • 8-hour course available locally and at Boy Scout summer camp
  • Swimming and Water Rescue
    • Provides information and in-the-water skills to prevent, recognize, and respond to swimming emergencies during unit swimming activities
    • Expands on Safe Swim Defense course
    • Open to BSA adults and youth age 16 and over
    • Conducted by council-approved instructor, valid for three years
    • 8-hour course available at Boy Scout summer camp
BSA Lifeguard
  • Professional lifeguard certification covering requirements in aquatics skills, safe swim defense, first aid, and emergency action
  • Valid for three years
  • 30-hour course conducted by a BSA Aquatics Instructor or Lifeguard Counselor
  • Available locally for prospective summer camp staff members age 15 and up

Cold Weather Training

This is an introductory-level course in the basics of cold-weather camping and activities. The presentations are delivered in a classroom setting by trained & experienced GNFC instructors. Topics covered include:

  • Clothing
  • Nutrition & cooking
  • Shelter selection & use
  • Sleeping systems
  • Recreational activities & integrating them in your unit program
  • Equipment
  • Health & safety topics, including first-aid

Cold Weather Training is delivered annually as a one-day program open to BSA-registered youth & adults.

C.O.P.E. Instructor Training
  • For those who wish to be certified to operate the C.O.P.E. course at Camp Schoellkopf
  • Learn how to safely guide participants through teamwork and problem solving exercises on the Low and High ropes challenge courses
  • Open to BSA adults and youth age 16 and over; candidates under age 18 will be certified as “counselors in training”
  • Valid for three years, conducted by BSA C.O.P.E. Director
  • 3-day course available locally and for prospective Boy Scout Summer camp staff members

Fuels Safety Orientation

  • Suggested for any troop that will be using a chemcial fuel at a GNFC camp.  Read the GNFC policy >
  • This course uses instruction and hands-on training to safely handle and use liquid fuel stoves and lanterns.
  • It covers different types of fuels; propane- butane – white gas – hybrids, and different types of equipment; back packing stoves – larger camp stoves – lanterns.
  • If you plan to use any of this type of equipment on your next trip, at least one attending adult should have completed this course.
  • Offered locally. Contact David Sepulveda <> (716) 425-6535
  • Time: 2 hours.


  • Kodiak teaches leadership skills in a fun way.
  • It is a challenging high-adventure trek with a simple and fun leadership course included.
  • Kodiak is not taught indoors or in a classroom; it is done completely outdoors using nature's examples of leadership.
  • This training is done locally at Summer Resident Camp and with Venturing Crews.
Leave No Trace
  • Awareness Workshop
    • A formal LNT presentation that is less than one-day in length
    • Participants receive introductory training in ethics, skills, and the seven principles of Leave No Trace
    • Ideally conducted by a facilitator that has completed LNT 101
    • Available locally, at Boys Scout summer camp, and online at 
  • BSA LNT 101
    • Combination of presentations, discussions, and hands-on activities
    • Includes information on how LNT principles apply to BSA advancement procedures
    • Conducted by a LNT Trainer
    • 3-hour course available locally
  • LNT Trainer
    • Participants learn the concepts of LNT and prepare to teach the LNT curriculum in a variety of settings
    • Open to BSA adults and youth age 14 and over
    • Conducted by a LNT Master Educator 
    • 16-hour course available locally
  • LNT Master Educator
    • 5 day and night course available regionally through the BSA or LNT Center for Outdoor Ethics

National Youth Leadership Training - see "White Buffalo..." below


OKPIK, the Inuit word for Snowy Owl, is BSA’s national high-adventure cold-weather training program.  The curriculum was developed by BSA’s Northern Tier High Adventure Program. OKPIK builds on the basic information presented in the Cold Weather Training program.  Through additional classroom sessions and real winter camping experience, participants strengthen their knowledge base and develop skills through hands-on activities.  Trained and experienced instructors deliver the classroom program and serve as guides during the field practical.

  • OKPIK is delivered annually and includes an evening classroom session followed by a weekend field practical.
  • OKPIK is open to all BSA-registered adults and to BSA-registered Youth aged 14 and older and First Class.
  • COLD WEATHER TRAINING is a pre-requisite to attending OKPIK.

Powder Horn

  • High-adventure resource training designed to introduce and expose Boy Scout and Venturing adult unit leaders to the activities and resources necessary to operate a successful outdoor/high-adventure unit-level program.
  • Time: a four day course offered locally in an outdoor setting. 

Safe Swim Defense

  • This aquatic Safety certification course is for both Scouts and Scouters.
  • At least one adult must be certified for your Troop to do any water activities.
  • The course includes video, lecture, discussion, and training.
  • Offered locally at Summer Resident Camp and ONLINE.
  • Time: approximately 1 hour.

Safety Afloat

  • This is an adult certification course on boating safety.
  • At least one adult is required to be certified for your troop to do any on- the- water activities.
  • The course includes video, lecture, and discussion training.
  • For boating activities, you need both Safe Swim Defense and Safety Afloat certifications.
  • Offered locally at Summer Resident Camp
  • Time: approximately 1 hour.


  BSA Archery Range Officer

  • For BSA adults who wish to run unit archery events or to operate one of the archery the ranges at GNFC camps
  • Conducted by a BSA Shooting Sports Director, valid for two years
  • 3-hour course available locally and for prospective summer camp staff members
  National Rifle Association
  • Basic Instructor Training
  • Prerequisite for firearm-specific courses
  • Must be age 21 or over
  • 6-hour course available locally from a NRA Training Counselor
  Rifle Instructor
  • Required to provide instruction for unit rifle shooting events and merit badge instruction
  • Must be age 21 or over
  • 2-day course available locally from a NRA Training Counselor
  Shotgun Instructor
  • Required to provide instruction for unit shotgun shooting events and merit badge instruction
  • Must be age 21 or over
  • 2-day course available locally from a NRA Training Counselor
  Pistol Instructor
  • Required to provide instruction for Venture Crew pistol shooting events
  • Must be age 21 or over
  • 2-day course available locally from a NRA Training Counselor
  Range Safety Officer
  • Required to supervise a range for unit shooting sports events and merit badge instruction
  • Must be age 21 or over
  • Available locally from a NRA Chief Range Safety Officer and online (for certified NRA instructors only) at 
  Training Counselor
  • Available regionally through the NRA

  Chief Range Safety Officer

  •  Available regionally through the NRA


 Trainer's Edge (Train the Trainer)

  • This "invitation-only" course is open to all Scouters looking to improve their presentation skills; let Army Leonetti know you are interested.
  • Topics include, but are not limited to: use of of projectors, PowerPoint presentations, flip charts and cards, public speaking, handouts and notes.
  • If you have seen how much fun we have putting on training courses and would like to learn some of our methods this class is for you!!
  • After completion of this course, you will be asked to help on future training programs.
  • Time: approximately 6 hours, locally.

University of Scouting

  • A wide-ranging variety of topics taught by our council’s best trainers.
  • This program covers about 40 to 50 topics from Tiger Cubs to Webelos, Boy Scouts to Ventures, from crafts to Dutch Oven cooking, our roles as leaders and how we can Keep the Promise of Scouting.
  • The Junior College of Scouting is designed with the youth in mind – more hands on, more activity.
  • This is the biggest training event we hold each year for youth and adult leaders.
  • Time: 8 hours, locally.

White Buffalo - National Youth Leadership Training (NYLT)

  • National Youth Leadership Training is an exciting, action-packed program designed to provide youth members with leadership skills and experience they can use in their Crews or Troops.
  • Time: one week course offered locally at Schoellkopf Scout Reservation.


Wood Badge for the 21st Century

  • The ultimate leadership-training program for adults brings together leaders from all 3 programs – Cub Scouting, Boy Scouting and Venturing – and all levels of BSA professional and volunteer leadership.
  • The challenges in the world have changed. Wood Badge has also evolved to give leaders the skills they need to strengthen Scouting in meaningful ways drawing from a wide range of sources from within, and beyond the family of Scouting. The latest leadership and team development models are presented in a way that have been embraced by corporate America and successful outdoor leadership organizations.
  • Building on the past, understanding the present, and looking to the future; Wood Badge for the 21st Century stands ready to provide the leadership for Scouting and America.
  • Time: two sessions, three days each, over two weekends, locally.


Additional Information

Find specific ONLINE training topic(s) > 
Get help with > 




Please note you must pre-register for all live trainings. Trainings are subject to cancellation if minumum class size is not met.

The training sessions listed below are local (L) sessions.


Information for Experienced Leaders



GNFC Training Contacts

GNFC Training Chairman
Ron Krawczyk - (716) 435-5083

GNFC Training Staff Advisor
Bob Blatz - (716) 512-6215

GNFC Training Chairs
Red Jacket: 
Tom Slomka - (716) 818-3791

Onondaga: Bob Germony - (716) 440-2372

Polaris: Dave Sepulveda - (716) 425-6535

Tatonka: Vacant


Greater Niagara Frontier Council #380, Boy Scouts of America, 2860 Genesee Street, Buffalo, NY 14225
Service Center Hours:  Monday through Friday 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM - Phone (716) 891-4073 - Fax (716) 891-4008
Scout Shop Hours:  Monday, Wednesday, Thursday & Friday 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM; Tuesday 9:00 AM to 7:30 PM;
Every Saturday 9:30 AM - 3:00 PM - Phone (716) 891-1689 - Fax (716) 891-1910