How to Become a State or National Park Ranger

Do you think you might enjoy working as a Park Ranger? Do you enjoy working in nature? Do you enjoy interacting with people?

Official Park Rangers are professionals who receive excellent training in nature and in working with people. Park Rangers usually hold at least a Bachelor of Science degree in one, or more, of the following areas that are quite relevant to the work of Park Rangers:

  • Forestry
  • Park and Recreation Management
  • Botany
  • Geology
  • Conservation
  • Wildlife Management

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Find Out More About The Job

Read up on Park Ranger information and programs at the National Park Service website.

Great ways to explore the job of Park Ranger:

  • Learn more about the history of the parks, including their rules and regulations.
  • Have conversations with park rangers regarding what they enjoy about their jobs.
  • Spend quality time at federal, state and county parks.

Entry-level seasonal work is a good idea for getting your feet wet. Consider volunteering at national, state, county or municipal parks as a viable way to get into the profession.

Training and Education for Park Ranger

A college degree is normally preferred to get started.

If you desire to work in management, what is recommended is a Master of Science, or Ph.D., in a relevant topic related to your area of interest.

Learn about the Requirements it Takes to Become a Park Ranger in your State

Flexibility for the Park Ranger Job

  • One must be open to performing demanding physical labor at various times.
  • A park ranger should be flexible to working weekends, holidays and during the summer, obviously peak times for tourists.
  • Maintain an open-mindedness to being assigned to a region different from your present home.

The Work You Will Perform as Park Ranger

  • performing law enforcement and firefighting duties, which includes collecting usage fees, permit and equipment sales, and performing grounds maintenance
  • teaching the public about subjects such as how to enjoy and protect nature
  • leading tours
  • being/working outdoors and caring for nature
  • interacting with park guests while providing excellent customer service
  • gathering environmental data on wildlife and plant populations
  • assisting lost, or injured, hikers
  • offering information to visitors

Park Ranger Programs and Educational Opportunities

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Choose your area of study and receive free information about programs you are interested in. Park rangers are responsible for protecting our parks and wilderness areas as well as guiding and educating the public. These duties are the same across the local, state, and national levels. Park rangers pursue degrees related to parks and recreation, environmental science, as well as law enforcement and criminal justice.