Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Park Ranger Job Questions

Many National Park seasonal job for this coming summer are in the process of being filled about this time of year.  I have received several good questions from readers asking for some tips on seasonal hiring and job prep.

Having my "Class 2" NPS SLETP certification this allows me to apply for "part-time/seasonal" Protection Ranger positions in any park with postings. By default this only allows me to work a limited number of hours in each park, say I got out of college in December and was commissioned someplace as a Seasonal Protection Ranger through the winter, would I then be eligible to apply to another park as a Seasonal for the summer? Or would I have exceeded my number of hours allowed to work for the NPS for that year? 

The hour limit for working that you are hearing about only applies to each position you work in within a specific park.  The limit is normally around  1039 hours within one year.  That may have been adjusted since I retired, so you may want to eventually ask about that when you are considered for job offers.  As I said this applies to a specific job or position description within one park.  So what that translates to is that you can work say 1039 hours in a law enforcement seasonal position in a National Park and then be hired for another similar position in another park. Or you could be hired within the same park as long as it is not another law enforcement position.  As an example we would on occasion work an individual in a law enforcement position for the summer into fall and then hire them into a firefighter position for the winter.  These opportunities are few and far and between.  It is very common and the goal of most seasonals that are out of school to move from park to park in back to back jobs. In the old days I had several friends that worked at Shenandoah NP in the summer and Everglades in the Winter.  

The key with the 1039 hours is that if you are worked over that limit (without a rare waiver) you can not be considered for that same position with rehire status the next year.  Re-hire status means that if you work in a position one season, do a good job, and the supervisor wants you back; they can re hire you back in the same position the next year without competition.  A nice benefit to have.

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