Park rangers control, supervise and manage national parks, scenic areas, historic sites, nature reserves and other recreational areas.
You can work as a park ranger without formal qualifications. You will probably get some informal training on the job. Entry to this occupation may be improved if you have qualifications and/or work experience. You may like to consider a VET qualification in conservation and land management or lands, parks and wildlife. As subjects and prerequisites can vary between institutions, you should contact your chosen institution for further information. You can also become a park ranger through a traineeship in Conservation and Land Management or Lands, Parks and Wildlife. Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require Year 10. For more details, see Section 2. Ask your career adviser about the possibility of starting some of this training in school. Alternatively, you can become a park ranger by completing a degree at university in a relevant discipline such as botany, environmental science, environmental management or geography. To get into these courses you usually need to gain your Senior Secondary Certificate of Education. Prerequisite subjects, or assumed knowledge, in one or more of English, mathematics, chemistry and physics are normally required. Most universities in Australia offer degrees in these areas. Universities have different prerequisites and some have flexible entry requirements or offer external study. Contact the institutions you are interested in for more information.
Park rangers may perform the following tasks:
Park rangers work in many environments, such as snow fields, rainforests, coastal regions and semi-arid areas. They may be required to work in remote areas and move from park to park. All rangers have contact with the public. Park rangers often work on weekends and public holidays.
Park rangers are mainly employed by government agencies. Competition for positions is strong, and employers usually require applicants to have some park or nature-orientated experience. Some park rangers move between states and into forest officer, fisheries officer or land protection officer positions. Opportunities may also be available to work as conservation officers with local councils. With experience, and sometimes further training, park rangers may progress to professional science positions or general management.
An indigenous park ranger manages areas of parkland and their usage through their knowledge of Indigenous culture and heritage, often working with Indigenous communities to identify and protect sites of special significance.