what i love about being a national park ranger

This is an interview I am really excited about, a real life National Park Ranger!  Ranger Kaiti May is a National Park Ranger who also runs a blog. You can also find her on Twitter and Facebook.  Today she is talking about her love of being a Park Ranger. 

What is your earliest memory of National Park Rangers?
My earliest memory of a National Park Ranger is when I was 14 and my family visited Grand Canyon National Park. We went to an evening program at the campground and it was a talk on mule deer. That is when I decided I wanted to do that, I wanted to be a National Park Ranger.

What is the one thing you love the most about being a Park Ranger?
I love the opportunity of helping people connect to their National Parks; our nation’s natural and cultural history. I also love being able to make families and people’s memories good ones.

What is one thing you love least about being a Park Ranger?
I don’t like having to “remind” visitors of rules and regulations in the park. It can make for a bad memory for everyone.

When did you know you had fallen in love with being a Park Ranger?
I fell in love with being a Park Ranger the moment I put my first uniform on at my first park; Assateague Island National Seashore in Maryland. I was working in the entrance stations and the campground ranger station and just fell in love with the interactions with visitors and the atmosphere with my co-workers.

What keeps you going back to being a Park Ranger?
This is my life dream, to be a National Park Ranger, and I can’t think of doing anything else. Like every job it has its negatives, but the positives certainly outweigh the negatives.

What advice do you have to a novice?
This is not a job where you just coax by and move up, it’s something that you have to remain passionate about. Your passion can be the outdoors, hiking, speaking with people, fishing, or more. It’s the type of job where you put in a lot of work on your off time, but hopefully you love it enough, that it doesn't feel like work. I would recommend volunteering! At any park, city, national, or state; find out what you really enjoy doing and go from there.

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