Rangers and a ProRanger intern working on an incident action plan in Boston

Frequently Asked Questions:

Since its inception in 1916, the National Park Service (NPS) has been dedicated to the preservation and management of the country's most outstanding natural, historical and recreational resources. Today, the NPS encompasses 393 sites across the United States and in American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.

So what is the "ProRanger Philadelphia" program?

The ProRanger Philadelphia Program is an academic and technical skills training and internship program that is cooperatively administered by the National Park Service and Temple University. The program was established to recruit, train and employ law enforcement park rangers for the National Park Service. National Park Service Law Enforcement Rangers are sworn, commissioned law enforcement officers whose duties include detection, investigation and apprehension of persons responsible for criminal activity as well as protecting parks' natural and cultural resources, educating the public and providing public safety services.

After successfully graduating from Temple University and meeting all program requirements and program standards, ProRangers are eligible for non-competitive conversion to a position as a Law Enforcement Ranger within the National Park Service. Students must apply for positions and be selected under the applicable hiring authority. There is no guarantee that a position will be obtained; however, it may be noted that all previous students who have successfully completed the program have obtained employment within the National Park Service.

How does the ProRanger Philadelphia program work?

Upon acceptance into the program during the sophomore year, participants will enroll in the Certificate in National Park Service Management. Paid summer internships, which take place between the sophomore - junior and junior - senior years, expose the ProRanger to the scope, breadth and complexities of working in a National Park setting. During the summer following graduation, the ProRanger will attend the Temple University Seasonal Law Enforcement Training Program, to gain the necessary qualifications to be issued a National Park Service law enforcement commission. After successfully graduating from Temple University and meeting all program requirements and program standards, ProRangers are eligible for non-competitive conversion to a position as a Law Enforcement Ranger within the National Park Service.

Proranger intern removing invasive species from a creek bedWhat is the difference between the Certificate and the ProRanger program?

The ProRanger program is the partnership between Temple and the National Park Service. Students must first be accepted as a ProRanger to enroll in Temple's Certificate in National Park Service Management. Successful completion of the ProRanger program will require attainment of the certificate and fulfillment of additional National Park Service requirements.

What do Commissioned Law Enforcement Park Rangers do?

The duties of a commissioned National Park Service law enforcement park ranger are as diverse as the 400+ National Park units. In the morning, a park ranger may be busy doing traffic enforcement, the afternoon crime scene investigation or possibly taking part in a search and rescue mission. No two days are ever the same, and every day rangers go to work knowing that they are playing an important part in protecting some of America's greatest and grandest treasures.

What sort of duties will ProRangers complete on their internships?

The exact nature of the duties will in part depend on which park the ProRanger Philadelphia trainee is placed. During the course of the internship the opportunity will exist to work across a park's divisions which may include resource management, administration, maintenance, interpretive programs and of course law enforcement. Wherever an intern is assigned, the internship will provide the participant with an overview of park operations and a taste of working for the National Park Service.

ProRanger Alum during a personal defense exerciseWhere will I do my summer internship and how will I receive credit?

Student internship placements will be at National Park Service sites and will not be completed for credit. During your first summer internship you will be required to take a 2-credit academic course (PRAN1577) which will be conducted in a distance learning format and will include virtual meetings.

How long are the summer internships?

Each summer internship will last 10 weeks.

Where (what parks) will ProRangers be assigned to work?

While most interns will be placed at one of the partner parks in the Northeast or National Capitol Region, the program includes partner parks across the country. Intern requests for specific partner parks will be considered; however, the final park placement will be made by the ProRanger Program Manager.

What about housing and transportation during the internships?

Housing will be provided for interns who will be working outside of commuting distance of their primary residence. In many cases, National Parks are located in urban areas, or are serviced by public transportation. Every effort will be made to accommodate individuals with a workable assignment.

ProRanger intern in front of the USS Constitution in Dry Dock, Boston MA
How will I be placed after graduation?

After successfully graduating from Temple University and meeting all program requirements and program standards, ProRangers are eligible for non-competitive conversion to a position as a Law Enforcement Ranger within the National Park Service. Students must apply for positions and be selected under the applicable hiring authority. Although there is no guarantee that a position will be obtained, it may be noted that all previous students who have successfully completed the program have obtained employment within the National Park Service.

What would be my salary upon completing the program?

Upon initial placement after graduation, appointees will be hired at a GL-5 on the federal law enforcement officer salary scale. Within a year new hires will be promoted to a GL-7, and with two years of good performance reviews they will be promoted to a GL-9. It is likely that the graduate's actual salary will be higher, depending on duty location (locality pay adjustments for urban areas) and work schedule (premium pay for overtime, nights, Sundays and holidays).

Is the ProRanger program restricted to criminal justice majors?

Absolutely not! The primary duties of ProRanger graduates will be visitor and resource protection, which includes law enforcement, fire fighting, search and rescue, and emergency medical response. Interested students from any major or discipline are encouraged to apply.