How to Become a Park Ranger in Pennsylvania

Are you seeking information on Pennsylvania park ranger training and degree requirements to advance your career? We have some helpful information for you.

The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) Bureau of State Parks utilizes park rangers to manage the state’s elaborate collection of state parks and its additional natural resources. The DCNR utilizes the term “ranger” for the law enforcement officer who works in the parks and woods through the state.

Pennsylvania Park Ranger Job Duties

Forest rangers and Park rangers in the state hold the same power. Park ranger job duties in Pennsylvania include:

  • Facilitating visitors with worthwhile outside experiences
  • Serving as accredited Department of Health first responders (medical)
  • Working in the capacity of law enforcement officer

One of the responsibilities of the park ranger is to patrol the park to which he or she is assigned among the 120 state parks of the Commonwealth, which usually see at least 38 million visitors each year.

Professional park rangers are available to answer inquiries and clarify regulations and rules to visitors. Park rangers manage the process of assessing buildings, the property, and the environment for indications of cleanliness, security risks, and vandalism. At times, park rangers are called upon to administer CPR or first aid. Park rangers also utilize various motor vehicles that can include snowmobiles, ATVs, and watercraft.

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The park system is a major economic stimulator:

  • Visitors spent $859 million in 2010, which supplied $398 million in labor income to Pennsylvania state parks.
  • $274 million was the statewide sales impact of out of state visitors.
  • Out of state visitor spending totaled $94.6 million in labor income and $154 million value added effects
  • For each dollar invested in Pennsylvania state parks, $12.41 of the value added income is returned to Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania Park Ranger Requirements

Pennsylvania Park Ranger Education and Training

People that are seriously interested in becoming Pennsylvania park rangers must:

  • Have a driver’s license that is valid
  • Have a certification in CPR

Although there aren’t any specific requirements for education in becoming a Pennsylvania park ranger, procuring an official degree will usually better position applicants in the process.

There are highly relevant degree programs when people are considering becoming park rangers in Pennsylvania:

  • Park and recreation direction
  • Environmental science
  • Earth sciences
  • The Civil Service Exam Procedure
  • Natural sciences

The State Civil Service Commission must be first taken by all nominees for park ranger work in Pennsylvania. Upon finishing the assessment, candidates will be evaluated using their history, in addition to their civil service test outcomes.

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Park ranger candidates in Pennsylvania will be given two and a half hours to finish the exam (civil service), including the following areas that are significant subjects:

  • Reading comprehension
  • Social skill
  • Judgment
  • Math
  • Outdoor recreation (objectives and goals)

All tests are administered Monday through Friday. Although assessment dates are limited at these places, added evaluation facilities can be found in Scranton, Erie, Johnstown, and Lock Haven. Nominees can find out more concerning the civil service exam dates by calling this number: 717-787-7811.

Working as a Ranger Through the National Park Service in Pennsylvania

People can also work through the National Park Service as federal park rangers. The following are some wonderful places in which federal park rangers can work:

Park rangers working through the National Park Service have a particular standard of demands, such as the following:

  • Possessing a driver’s license that is legal
  • Fully being a USA citizen

Park ranger job candidates must have a minimum of one year for specialized experience at the level of GS-4 or hold a Bachelor’s degree from an approved school or university (or a mixture of schooling and expertise). People who qualify via education should have a minimum of twenty-four hours of coursework that was related, and includes study in these areas:

  • Social sciences
  • Museum sciences
  • Public management
  • Behavioral sciences
  • Sociology
  • Business administration
  • Law enforcement/police science

National Park Service park ranger training is achieved through at least one of the Learning centers:

  • At the Grand Canyon: Horace Albright Training Center
  • At Harpers Ferry, West Virginia: Stephen Mather Training Center
  • At Frederick, Maryland: Historic Preservation Center

The following represent several of the popular parks in the state:

  • Moraine State Park
  • Pymatuning State Park
  • Ohiopyle State Park
  • Bucktail State Park
  • Laurel Ridge State Park

Created in 1893, The Pennsylvania Bureau of State Parks has expanded to well over 100 parks; this makes it one of the biggest park systems in the United States.

Salary Information for Park Rangers in Pennsylvania

A park ranger in Pennsylvania takes home a great salary while pursuing a fulfilling career protecting the land of his or her state. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average Park Ranger in the state of Pennsylvania makes a median salary of $65,770 per year.

Park Ranger Programs and Schools in Pennsylvania

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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.