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178 reviews

Department of the Interior Employer Reviews

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Great working environment
Laborer/Equipment Operator (Former Employee), Philadelphia, PAJanuary 19, 2015
Pros: meeting people
Cons: seasonal not full time
7:00 to 3:30, learning about the history of Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell. Meet people from all over the world.
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Great field work
National Park Service Park Ranger (Eruption Crew) (Former Employee), Hawaii National Park, HIJanuary 13, 2015
Pros: government work
Cons: funding ran out for position
 Hiked front and back country trails to report on conditions and problems

 Helped visitors with first aid and information needs

 Assisted Law Enforcement with crowd, parking and traffic control management on Kilauea

volcano

 Operated within the Incident Command System

 Maintained National Park Service “Emergency Medical Responder” EMS provider and Basic

Life Support for Healthcare Provider credentials
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Great opportunities
Outdoor Recreation Planning/LA Intern (Former Employee), Anchorage, AKJanuary 13, 2015
I loved working for the Park Service. I learned a lot and was giving a lot of leeway to pursue other projects I thought needed to be done. I had a lot of opportunity to travel too.
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Great place to work
Business Plan Intern (Former Employee), Asheville, NCJanuary 9, 2015
Culture is phenomenal, but as with any government job, things move slowly.
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Volunteer
Volunteer (Current Employee), Morristown, NJJanuary 7, 2015
I've done volunteer work for several years for the Department and have thoroughly enjoyed it. I can't say for any job security, benefits, or things of that nature. The people who run the volunteer programs are all well trained, appreciative, and great to work with.
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Worked with wonderful office and field personnel. They were always willing to help you learn.
Senior Lead Law Enforcement Dispatcher (Former Employee), Boulder City, NVDecember 18, 2014
Pros: were the extra money and compensation you got when working holidays.
Cons: management could have been a lot better.
Loved the job. Helping others to solve their problems and meeting the field personnel was excellent. Would go into work on own when things were backed up or for a holiday. Management was minimal or non-exsistant. Co-workers were always there to help and work when needed. The hardest part of the job was calming people down who were involved with the injury of a child. The most enjoyable part of the job was helping someone who needed it.
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Great place to work
Range Technician (Former Employee), Shoshone, IDDecember 17, 2014
Pros: traveling and excitment
Cons: long hours at times
Typical day is never the same. Exciting job with a fast work pace. Good leadership and opportunities to advance.
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Fun, outdoor workplace
Wildland fire firefighter (Former Employee), Vale, ORDecember 15, 2014
Pros: free snacks, outdoor work, paid travel
Cons: short breaks, 16-hour+ work days at times, arduous labor
The majority of the duties performed by a wildland firefighter are outdoors. Experiencing elements of all four seasons is not uncommon. Depending upon where you are stationed, you may experience all four seasons within a few days. Most duties are related to prescribed burning, wildfire suppression, and fire preparedness. These duties include serving as a firefighter or engine operator during prescribed burning and wildfire suppression activities; conducting regular maintenance and repairs on various equipment such as fire engines, tractors, mowers, chain saws, and hand tools; serving as a crew member during fire break preparation which involves rock removal, mowing, trimming, tree and brush removal. You may have the potential to assist other refuges as well as other federal or state agencies throughout the nation with prescribed burning and wildfire suppression. When not involved with fire related activities, you may provide assistance in conducting natural resources related project work on behalf of the Fish and Wildlife Service's many refuges throughout the country.
PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS Each position is classed as an arduous fire position under the Interagency Wildfire Qualifications Standards adopted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. As a condition of employment, you must pass a pre-employment medical examination (which the Service will pay for). You will be required to achieve an arduous rating on the "Pack Test," which requires you to walk 3 miles with a 45 pound backpack in 45 minutes or less. The Pack Test is correlated to measures of aerobic and muscular fitness – more... as well as performance in field tasks such as working with hand tools or carrying loads over rough terrain. The Pack Test will be administered when you first report for duty. If you cannot meet the required fitness score for the Pack Test when it is initially administered, you must retake the test within a two week period. In the event you are unable to meet and maintain the fitness requirements you may be terminated in accordance with applicable personnel regulations.
Most positions require working on an engine or hand crew. This will entail working with as few as two individuals to as many as 20 individuals. Whether it is two or 20, it is imperative that you can work well with others. Communication with others is a vital part of the success of the job. Primary contacts are generally other crew members, crew supervisors, and others in the wild land fire management organization.
Most seasonal positions work 40 hours per week, but part-time and "intermittent" openings may be an option occasionally. Some positions require non-standard work schedules such as four 10-hour days, ten days on and four days off, or other variations. Early and late season employment is on an as-needed basis, depending on weather, fire season, and budgets. A 40-hour week is not guaranteed during pre or post-season work.
EQUIPMENT REQUIRED If selected for a fire position you will be expected to wear protective and safety equipment. The government will supply most items - hard hat, leather gloves, fire resistant clothing, backpack, tent, etc. However, you will need to purchase a GOOD pair
of firefighting boots. You will be reimbursed up to a certain amount for the boots. It is a very good idea to break the boots in BEFORE the first day of work. Other than boots, you will only need to furnish your personal belongings.
OUTDOOR SKILLS Can you drive a truck with a manual transmission? Can you change a tire? Can you run a chainsaw? Can you pitch a tent? Can you tie half a dozen knots and sharpen a knife? Can you read a topographic map? Can you use a compass? Learning how to get by and make do in the outdoors comes in handy. If you don't currently have any outdoor skills - ARE YOU WILLING TO LEARN? If you are willing to learn the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is willing to train you. Any outdoor skills that you currently possess will be to your benefit.
HOUSING Many of the refuges in this region provide housing for their seasonal fire crews for a nominal fee. In some cases the location of the position may be remote and refuge housing may be the only option. On the other hand some refuges are located near small towns that have properties available to rent. – less
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Rewarding and Challenging Work
Education Coordinator (Current Employee), Flat Rock, NCDecember 15, 2014
I truly enjoy the work that I do with the agency. It is rewarding in that I have opportunities to connect with people from all over the world, and all ages and demographics in promoting the stewardship of our special places. It is challenging in that we wear many hats, and our work is very interdisciplinary, so we have to be strong at multi-tasking as well as have great attention to detail, but be able to see the big picture and mission of the agency. Another exciting part is that while a"typical" day would most often involve me conducting a guided tour or education program for a group, there are very few typical days. We are frequently involved with public affairs activities, grant writing, fascilitating meetings, staff large public events, working with students on citizen science programs, managing volunteers. etc. etc.
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Great Experience, Low Pay
Forestry Technician (Former Employee), Los Banos, CANovember 30, 2014
As with most temporary fire jobs, this only lasts during the fire season (3-4 months). It is great experience, lots of downtime and physical labor, but also some fun natural resource projects. If your supervisor is nice, he may allow you to do more interesting work, other than pick sticks up.
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Fun
Administrative Clerk (Former Employee), Reno, NVNovember 23, 2014
Great place to work and great compensation! I would recommend anybody working here!
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Enjoy interpreting the history of Dr Martin Luther King
Interpretive Park Ranger (Current Employee), Atlanta, GANovember 21, 2014
I enjoy the interaction that I have with the visitors,that is the reason I go to work each day. I also enjoy my co-workers,all have a wealth of knowledge that is freely shared.
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Fun and challenging.
Maintenace Technician/Diver (Former Employee), Page, AZNovember 12, 2014
Work was rewarding! Most operations involved either keeping visitors safe or keeping the Underwater Recovery Unit Team safe. The environment proved challenging with temperature extremes but that provided an opportunity for visitor interaction and education.
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productive, pleasant environment, team work
Maintenance Worker (Former Employee), Kosciusko, MSNovember 2, 2014
Pros: working with great people, doing a job i enjoyed
Cons: no benefits and the fact that the job was a seasonal position
While working for the Natchez Trace Parkway, I performed weed eating around road signs, islands and trees. I also mowed intersections and parkways, as well as maintained comfort stations and removed debris from roadside.
I learned proper procedure for logging in my work time and preventative maintenance procedures on equipment.
My supervisors were helpful, courteous, and respectful in their day-to-day instructions. I always felt I could go to them with any work-related problems.
My co-workers were always likable and courteous as well as easy to work with as a team.
The hardest part of my job was the heat of the day.
The most enjoyable part of my job was the sense of accomplishment from doing a job well and working with such great people.
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Solid work staff and job
Fire Monitoring Technician/Wildland Firefighter (Former Employee), Burns, OROctober 27, 2014
It was a fun place to work. Knowledgeable staff and you got to be outside doing fun science.
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Great seasonal job. Great training.
Dispatcher/Telephone Operator (Former Employee), Brecksville, OH (Cuyahoga Valley, NRA)October 13, 2014
The fulltime staff take their time to train you right. Co-workers were very nice. Fast paced. Great place to work.
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Great place to work
BLM intern (Former Employee), Gunnison, COOctober 2, 2014
Pros: working outside and around great people
I loved working for this company. I always felt welcome, and always felt like part of the time. The company cared very much about their employees and they took very good care of me.
The people there were fun and a joy to be around.

Having the opportunity to work outside and away from a desk made this job even better.
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Difficult Environment
Special Agent (Current Employee), Albuquerque, NMOctober 1, 2014
Difficult environment to work in due to senior management.
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Park Rangers
Park Ranger (L.E.) (Former Employee), Sandy Hook, NJSeptember 29, 2014
Perform police functions as well as conservation officer duties such as enforcing fishing regulations.
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Its Hot in the summer but 8 the other months are great.
Plumbing Department Lead (Current Employee), Death Valley CaSeptember 23, 2014
Pros: great equipment to work with
Cons: the summers are hot
Its the federal government so there is a ton of paperwork for the smallest things. But they spend a lot of money training you in a wide area of subjects. living inside a National Park is great and the work is always changing.You never get bored.

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