Job Code Pay Scale Group Pay Scale Type Bargaining Unit Civil Service or Non-Civil Service Last Executive Board Change Executive Board Change History
74745 28 RG R4 C 811-10 08/01/2023
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JOB CODE: 74745

SERIES NATURE OF WORK: The DCNR Ranger job series describes work providing informational and law enforcement services to the public in state parks and state forests for the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR).

DEFINITION: This is structured trainee work performing customer service, visitor safety, and law enforcement duties in state parks and state forests.

An employee in this job receives formal and on-the-job training to develop understanding and competence in providing recreational, conservation, educational, visitor safety, law enforcement, and rescue services in state parks and forests. Work involves assisting an experienced ranger or park manager with providing activity and educational information; park and forest grounds maps; and general assistance to visitors, school groups, civic groups, sporting associations, and other special interest groups. Work includes assisting with law enforcement actions and visitor safety functions, such as patrolling state park and state forest lands to ensure compliance with laws, regulations, policies, and procedures; and to ensure visitors are safely using park and forestry lands and recreational activities. Work also includes assisting with visitor complaints, suspected crime, and accident investigations; issuing citations; making arrests as warranted by law; and filing charges with the appropriate court system. Duties are performed with increasing independence as experience is gained. Work is performed under the supervision of a DCNR Ranger Supervisor or a higher-level park manager who reviews the work in progress and upon completion for effectiveness and adherence to established policies and procedures.

EXAMPLES OF WORK: (NOTE: The examples of work are representative of the work, but every position classified to this job may not perform all examples of work listed. Conversely, this is not an all-inclusive list of work examples.)

• Participates in formal and on-the-job training and demonstrates practical field applications of classroom training.

• Participates in a structured law enforcement training program involving firearms use, physical fitness drills, and field and classroom components to obtain authority to exercise the power of arrest.

• Explains and enforces state park and state forest laws, regulations, policies, and procedures to promote visitor safety and conservation.

• Conducts patrols and participates in complaint, accident, and crime investigations.

• Assists with making arrests and issuing written warnings, citations, and parking tickets consistent with state and local laws and departmental directives and guidelines.

• Participates in water rescue training to ensure visitor safety in natural water environments, which includes instruction regarding personal equipment and firearm safety during rescue operations, personal floating device (PFD) safety and use,

instructions on boat and watercraft operations, and utilizing rescue devices, such as ropes and floatation devices.

• Responds to emergencies and incidents, including assisting with water rescue efforts, by administering first aid and cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), directing traffic, and requesting assistance.

• Provides information to the public regarding outdoor recreation and education, conservation principles, and state park and state forest goals and objectives.

• Delivers presentations to school groups, civic groups, sporting associations, and other special interest groups.

• Responds to customer inquiries and identifies customer service needs.

• Assists with preparing correspondence, reports, memoranda, and other written materials.

• Travels to and between state parks and state forest lands to patrol the grounds, monitor activities, and conduct investigations.

• Operates motorized vehicles and non-motorized equipment, including all-terrain vehicles, motorcycles, and watercraft.

• Performs related work as required.


• Knowledge of the practices and principles of outdoor recreation.

• Knowledge of natural resource management, ecology, and conservation.

• Ability to read and interpret laws, regulations, policies, and procedures.

• Ability to operate motor vehicles.

• Ability to communicate effectively orally.

• Ability to communicate effectively in writing.

• Ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships.

MINIMUM EXPERIENCE AND TRAINING: (NOTE: Based on the Entry Level Knowledges, Skills, and Abilities)

• Completion of 15 college credits in natural or environmental sciences, natural resource management, park management, parks or outdoor recreation, forestry, environmental education, ecology, wildlife management, or in a closely related field;


• Six months of experience providing visitor services in a public park, forest, recreation area, or a privately-owned and operated nature or outdoor education center;


• An equivalent combination of experience and training.


• Must be at least 21 years of age at time of employment.

• All positions require possession of an active motor vehicle license.

• All employees must successfully complete a structured law enforcement training program to obtain authority in exercising the powers of arrest during the trainee period.

• All employees must obtain valid certification in standard first aid and adult, child, and infant CPR approved by the American Red Cross, American Heart Association, or equivalent during the trainee period.

• All employees must pass psychological testing (Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI). Failure to pass this test is a basis for removal from the position.

• All employees must pass Pennsylvania State Police and FBI Criminal Background Checks. A record of conviction of a criminal offense for which more than one year in prison can be imposed as punishment is a basis for removal from the position.

• Certain positions in this job require completion of water rescue training to ensure visitor safety in park and forest natural water environments.

• Certain positions in this job require possession of a valid Class M operator’s license.