Become a Park Ranger
There are a lot of fulfilling careers in the Park Service. If you love the outdoors,
it's likely you would enjoy working as a Park Ranger since there are so many types of positions
that relate to a love of the outdoors. Park Ranger work is both about conservation and helping
the public understand conservation issues.
There are around 391 National Parks in the United States. Most of them are protecting
precious land and resources that are not replaceable. These careers are designed to protect
these lands and what they hold.
Park Ranger - Park Rangers fulfill many roles. They patrol paths in our National
Parks, they help visitors interpret the park's assets, they help in scientific research by
reporting biological conditions, and ensure visitors are paying their dues.
Guide - The Guide is a Park Ranger that specializes in public relations. Guides
prepare their own in-depth presentations to the public regarding specifics aspects of the National
Park. Guides usually specialize in a certain aspect of the Park, such as the botanical specimen,
or an edifice of some historical importance. They are often used to make a case for conservation
to the general public and to elected officials.
Science Technician - Science workers run experiments and observe conditions in
the National Parks. They are hard at work diagnosing changes in the Parks and help determine
mankind's impact on natural habitats. They are also learning as much as they can from our natural
environments and contribute to their local University studies to solve greater world problems.
Maintenance Ranger - Maintenance rangers care for the Park and make sure the paths,
roads, buildings, and other kinds of facilities are in good condition. If you like working
outside and hiking, and if you like working and playing hard, this is the job for you.
All of these positions require high school diplomas and some experience or college. College
courses in mathematics and science courses such as biology, botany, and geology help to get
jobs in the Park Service.
To categorize job positions, the Park and Forest Services use the government system. In this
system, an entry level position would be in the GS-2 through GS-5 levels and make around $18,000
to $22,000 a year (depending on State and job of course). A GS-5 job is usually obtained after
around a year of employment. The applicant must also have proven competence during this time.
On top of this, 24 credit hours of college is often required in a related field.
The Park Service is a wonderful way to serve and also pay the bills. It is fulfilling and also fun,
while you stay physically fit and get to enjoy the outdoors and our Nation's treasures.
If you need more help with getting a job with the Park Service, check out our guide on
how to become a park ranger.