Trying to find the "official" statement
I have a scout that has Family Life, Personal Management, and Personal Fitness to wrap up. He wasn't to begin his Eagle Process and talk with District Eagle Board Councilor. Coucilor told mom that he cant begin the process until his MB are complete so mom went to a fact or fiction site and it stated "Statement" A scout must complete all merit badges before starting his Eagle Project" Result " Absolutely not, A scout may start an Eagle Project he day he Achieves the rank of Life Scout.
Guide to Advancement. I believe there is an entire section that addresses the Eagle process and order of doing things. I recall an "escape clause" as it were, which essentially says that if a Scout goes "rogue" and begins a project and didn't follow process, that he should still get the benefit of the doubt and cannot throw out his project "just because".
MBs do NOT have to be done before a project can begin. The Eagle project can be done at any time during Life as long as it is completed (along with SMC) before his 18th birthday.
EDIT: Don't see anywhere where Requirement #5 says this has to be done last.
While a Life Scout, plan, develop, and give leadership to others in a service project helpful to any religious institution, any school, or your community. (The project must benefit an organization other than Boy Scouting.)A project proposal must be approved by the organization benefiting from the effort, your unit leader and unit committee, and the council or district before you start.You must use the Eagle Scout Service Project Workbook,No. 512-927, in meeting this requirement.
—Eagle Scout requirement 5
Edited by Col. Flagg, 31 July 2017 - 01:15 PM.