Park Interpreter (BACKFILL: 10/21-12/20)

Expected Dates
October 21, 2019 to December 20, 2019
Capitol Reef National Park
Position ID
This position entails providing interpretive services to park visitors at Capitol Reef National Park.
The primary work involves staffing the Capitol Reef National Park Visitor Center (elevation 5,500’), which is open daily. Candidate will be required to work nights, holidays and weekends. Specific lieu days will be assigned.  Annual park visitation is approximately 1 million; the small visitor center receives ~1,000 to over 1,500 daily visitors during the main season (March through October). Work requires providing information, orientation and interpretation in-person, by phone, email, and standard mail. Work will be accomplished with exact time deadlines and requires accountability and attention to details.

Work involves researching, developing and presenting interpretive talks on topics including: the 280 million year geologic history of the Waterpocket Fold, high desert ecosystems, climate change in the southwest, dark sky resources, Fremont Culture and archeology, Mormon Pioneer History and National Park administrative history.  Other developmental interpretive opportunities may include creating and presenting interpretive hikes, star gazing, and full moon programs. Program outlines are available for reference and use. Taped programs are also available. Staff is required to create written program outlines and coach coworkers’ programs.

The position requires hiking a variety of frontcountry and backcountry trails and routes over rough terrain in all weather conditions. Familiarity with trails is essential for providing accurate visitor information and safety messages, and for issuing backcountry permits. The visitor center staff also serves as the park dispatch, handling radio communications simultaneously with interpretive operations. Ability to multi-task in a hectic workplace is critical.

Capitol Reef has a small staff and many other tasks are required including: processing lost and found items, following safety protocols and standard operating procedures, assisting law enforcement or other divisions as needed, and performing maintenance tasks. Cleaning with chemicals, heavy lifting and moving, and manual labor tasks are required. This position requires excellent teamwork ability, communication skills, customer service skills, flexibility, positive attitude, and ability to follow direction and the chain of command. 

Collateral duties may include: assisting with updating the park website, photography, assisting with writing projects, audio-video troubleshooting and repair, creation of video and/or podcasts, creating and revising manuals and standard operating procedures, assisting with administrative and social media tasks, assisting with the park phenology, wildlife camera studies, or other resource-related projects, as well as other general tasks.
Requirements:   The intern must have some experience with public speaking, familiarity with the cultural and natural resources of the Colorado Plateau or Four-Corners Region, and some experience in working with the public.
This work requires strong customer service skills, the capacity to learn information quickly, strong communication skills, the ability to evaluate an existing product, and teamwork. People who enjoy working with the public (particularly with youth), who have motivated and creative personalities, and who can work independently to meet deadlines will be excellent candidates for these positions. 

Proficiency with Word, PowerPoint and other common computer software is required.

Interns will be supervised by a career park ranger and the chief of interpretation. 

Compensation amounts:
  • $1,100 - one time RT travel allowance
  • $160 - weekly living allowance
  • $400 - gear/uniform allowance
  • AmeriCorps eligible ($2,960 education award and health insurance if elected)
  • Housing

*All allowances subject to applicable federal, state, and local taxes

  • Capitol Reef National Park is located in rural south-central Utah at 5,500 ft elevation, in the heart of redrock country.
  • On the job training primarily, including online interpretation courses, review of existing programs, road trip park
    orientation. Developmental opportunities such as: natural or cultural resource projects, special events, or
    search and rescue assistance.
  • Recreation includes hiking, camping, biking, nature studies, fruit picking & gardening (in-season),
    canyoneering. Educational opportunities include attending ranger programs & visiting other parks nearby.
  • Yes
Main Area of Focus
Education and Interpretation
Education, Training & Skills Expected
some coursework or experience
some coursework or experience
some coursework or experience
Earth Sciences
some coursework or experience
Customer Service
some experience
Social Media
some experience
Public Speaking
some experience
some experience
Working with Children
some experience