Also called: Environmental Education Specialist, Naturalist, Park Naturalist, Park Ranger
Produced by CareerOneStop
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Park naturalists establish a connection between parks and the public. They educate park visitors, student groups, and others about the natural bounty, history, scientific opportunities, and ecological diversity of the country’s local, state, and national parks. Park naturalists develop presentations, hands-on demonstrations, and interactive programs that help audiences get familiar with the park, everything from its geological formations and plants to the creatures who make their homes there. Whether by visiting schools to demonstrate how beavers construct their dams and lodges developing an exhibit that allows visitors to explore a model of bird habitats or leading an overnight trip through the park, a park naturalist aims to get people interested in and excited about the natural world. Naturalists must combine a passion for the environment with the presentation skills and public relations abilities that allow them to make a connection with the public. They answer many questions each day, explain regulations, and respond to emergencies in the park. Many naturalists rely on teaching experience to prepare them. Typically becoming a park naturalist requires a bachelor’s degree in environmental education or biology. Full-time work is not easy to come by and many naturalists start out as volunteer or seasonal workers.
What they do:Plan, develop, and conduct programs to inform public of historical, natural, and scientific features of national, state, or local park.
On the job, you would:
- Conduct field trips to point out scientific, historic, and natural features of parks, forests, historic sites, or other attractions.
- Prepare and present illustrated lectures and interpretive talks about park features.
- Plan and organize public events at the park.
- customer service
- administrative services
Education and Training
- teaching and course design
Arts and Humanities
- history and archeology
- English language
Math and Science
- talking to others
- reading work related information
- understanding people's reactions
- teaching people how to do something
People and Technology Systems
- thinking about the pros and cons of different options and picking the best one
- communicate by speaking
- listen and understand what people say
Ideas and Logic
- notice when problems happen
- order or arrange things
Hearing and Speech
- speak clearly
- recognize spoken words
- pay attention to something without being distracted
People interested in this work like activities that include helping people, teaching, and talking.
They do well at jobs that need:
- Self Control
- Concern for Others
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