Program Requirements

The Congressional Award Program is about challenge. The Award offers young people the opportunity to set a personal goal and achieve it. Along the way, you will learn about yourself and about qualities like responsibility, trust and the ability to plan and organize. There are six levels of Award — Bronze, Silver, and Gold Certificates and Bronze, Silver, and Gold Medals. Each level is cumulative — this means time spent on one award is carried with you to the next level. The miminum age to register is 13 1/2 and you must accomplish your goals by your 24th birthday.

Certificate Level

Min. Hours per Program Area
Bronze Silver Gold
   Voluntary Public Service 30 60 90
   Personal Development 15 30 45
   Physical Fitness 15 30 45
   Expedition/Exploration 1 day 2 days 3 days
Min. Total Hours 60 120 180
Total Minimum Months of Activity Needed* (for each of the main three program areas) 6 months

Medal Level

Min. Hours per Program Area
Bronze Silver Gold
   Voluntary Public Service 100 200 400
   Personal Development 50 100 200
   Physical Fitness 50 100 200
   Expedition/Exploration 1
overnight
2 consecutive overnights
consecutive overnights
Min. Total Hours 200 400 800
Total Minimum Months of Activity Needed* (for each of the main three program areas) 7 months 12 months 24 months

 Congressional Award Month Guide

Along with the hour requirement, the higher levels of the Award require that your activities be spread out over a minimum of months.  Please note the following:

1.  The month requirement applies to Voluntary Public Service, Personal Development, and Physical Fitness.  You must accumulate the necessary hours over a certain amount of months.  For example, the Bronze Medal requires a minimum of seven months of activity in Voluntary Public Service, seven months of activity in Personal Development, and seven months of activity in Physical Fitness.


2.  Months do not need to be consecutive.  For instance, if you register with the Award in January and work on Personal Development in January, February and March and then do not work on any Personal development until October, November and December, that would count as six months of activity.


3.  Months are cumulative.  For example, the seven months of activity you complete at the Bronze Medal level will be carried over to the next level, leaving a minimum of five more months of activity needed in order to qualify for the Silver Medal.


4  Months may only be counted once in the same activity area.  For instance, if you play soccer and softball during the same six month period for your Physical Fitness activity, you will only get credit for six months of activity, not 12 months of activity.  If different goals overlap in the same month, the month may only be counted once for the respective program area.