Parks Interpretive Specialist - Career Seasonal
State of Washington - Cowlitz County, WA

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From July 1, 2011 through June 29, 2013 a 3% temporary salary reduction is in effect for most state positions. The above salary reflects this three percent reduction. For more information, click here .

The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission is recruiting to fill a career seasonal Park Interpretive Specialist positions at the Mount St. Helens Visitor Center loctated in Cowlitz County. This career seasonal appointment length is anticipated be from April through October each year and is scheduled to work 40 hours per week.

This is a permanent career seasonal position. If hired, you would return to the same park each year for the duration fof the season.

For more information on Mount St. Helens Visitor Center, click Mount St. Helens Visitor Center .


Duties include:

- Research, develop and implement park-wide interpretive programming, including developing and presenting thematic interpretive and education programs such as walks, talks, presentations, living history programs, and Junior Ranger programs.
- Perform professional interpretive work in the park area, including Visitor Center.
- Collect fees/donations and process according to agency and area guidelines.
- Assist in volunteer coordination.
- Order and maintain supply of items for resale at visitor center.
- Assist in maintaining interpretive and education facilities at park Visitor Center.
- Coordinate and maintain interpretive signage and displays on buildings, trails, plantings, information bulletin boards, displays, brochures, and other informational signage.
- Supervise non-permanent staff, including scheduling and timesheet verification.
- Prepare, facilitate, and review interpretive services contracts and grant proposals, including the development of cost estimates and scope of work definitions.
- Conduct and schedule formal interpretive programs, guided walks, and campfire programs for park visitors, schools, and tour groups. Coordinate group visits, guest speakers, and research projects.
- Research, write, and facilitate interpretive services contracts and grant proposals.
- Assist with park records management, including accession catalogs, visitor use information, fiscal and operational records.
- Develop, implement, and maintain educational outreach, public outreach, and partnership programs for Washington Schools and local groups.
- Provide response to the media and general public about park area services and attractions.
- Perform routine maintenance at interpretive facilities, including building and ground maintenance.


Required Qualifications

A Bachelor's degree involving major study in interpretation or environmental education or a related field such as earth science, education, Pacific Northwest history, American history, or environmental science.

Experience in field of cultural or natural/earth science research or interpretation may be substituted, year for year, for education.

A Valid Washington State Driver's License

Preferred Qualifications

- Experience in public presentation.
- Knowledge of Volcanology and Geology.
- Experience supervising seasonal or volunteer staff.
- Experience operating audio/visual equipment.

Job Specific Competencies

- Ability and willingness to make formal and informal presentations to small and large groups, with diverse audiences, both internal and external using varied and sometimes technical media.
- Ability and willingness to expand consultative support outside the park and regional boundaries as needed.
- Ability and willingness to provide supervision and administrative direction to seasonal staff and volunteers.
- Ability and willingness to work with multiple partners and special interest groups, coordinating efforts and resolving conflicts to gain cooperation and develop partnerships and interpretive and educational opportunities.
- Ability to adapt to working and communicating with diverse groups of people.
- Ability to communicate clearly, succinctly and concisely with the public and external partners/stakeholders.
- Ability to design and prepare professional brochures, bulletin boards, and other publications.
- Ability to efficiently utilize a variety of audio/visual tools (from highly technical to very basic), computer equipment and various computer programs, including MS Office Suite.
- Ability to research, analyze and develop effective and comprehensive presentations.
- Ability to work alone and in a team environment.
- Ability to traverse rough and uneven terrain.
- Ability to work effectively in stressful situations.
- Knowledge of interpretive and archiving methods.
- Willingness to work varied shifts, including days, evenings, weekends, and holidays.


The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission has a union shop requirement. Any employee hired into this position will be required to meet union shop requirements within 30 days of employment.

The Essential Functions of the position will be discussed with candidates at the oral interview. Essential functions include the minimum qualifications and primary duties on this announcement. Candidates are hired on a conditional basis; contingent upon candidates showing the ability to perform the essential functions, with or without accommodation.

The selected candidates will be required to successfully complete a fingerprint background investigation.

Supplemental Information:


This position requires a completed on-line application with completed supplemental responses.

Only complete online applications will be considered. Be sure to answer all supplemental questions and attach all required documents. Responses to the supplemental questions will determine if you meet the minimum qualifications, any special qualifications and/or desired attributes for the position.

All application materials must be received by the closing date/time posted on this job announcement.


State Parks is governed by a board of seven volunteer citizens appointed by the Governor. Commission members serve for staggered, six-year terms, setting public policy and guiding the agency. The Washington state park system is comprised of 126,000 acres, including 116 developed parks, recreation programs, cultural and historical resources, trails, boating safety and winter recreation.

Agency Mission: The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission fosters outdoor recreation and education statewide to provide enjoyment and enrichment for all and a valued legacy to future generations. The Commission acquires, operates, enhances, and protects a diverse system of recreational, cultural, historical, and natural sites.

Centennial 2013 vision: In 2013, Washington's state parks will be premier destinations of uncommon quality, including state and regionally significant natural, cultural, historical and recreational resources that are outstanding for the experience, health, enjoyment and learning of all people.

Washington State Parks employs more than 450 permanent staff and more than 350 seasonal and non-permanent staff throughout the state. The headquarters office is located in Tumwater and region offices are located in Burlington, East Wenatchee and Tumwater.

Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission invites you to learn more about our agency by visiting:


Veterans Preference Points of five (5) or ten (10) percent are awarded to eligible veterans seeking employment with Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission. Eligibility for veteran’s preference is defined in RCW 73.16.010 as honorably discharged soldiers, sailors, and marines who are veterans of any war of the United States, or of any military campaign for which a campaign ribbon shall have been awarded, and their widows or widowers, shall be preferred for appointment and employment. Age, loss of limb, or other physical impairment, which does not in fact incapacitate, shall not be deemed to disqualify them, provided they possess the capacity necessary to discharge the duties of the position involved: PROVIDED, that spouses of honorably discharged veterans who have a service connected permanent and total disability shall also be preferred for appointment and employment.

Applicants claiming veteran’s preference must provide a copy of the DD 214 form or NGB 22 form . You can attach the appropriate documentation to the online application or fax it to 360-664-2106. Note : If you do not provide appropriate documentation to qualify for these additional preference points, the points will not be awarded.

For additional information on Veteran's Preference and guidance on how to determine if you are eligible for 5% or 10% , click here .

DIVERSITY POLICY STATEMENT: The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission is committed to creating an equitable, hospitable, appreciative, safe, and inclusive park environment – one that embraces the full spectrum of all community members’ contributions. The Commission makes this commitment because: Diversity strengthens the workforce in competence and ability; Celebrating diversity appreciates and values individual differences; Diversity serves an increasingly heterogeneous society; Diversity helps ensure the relevance of a state park system, its mission, properties, and programs to the people of this state today and in the future; and Diversity is crucial to our ability to serve all citizens. The Commission encourages and supports staff efforts to reach out to people of all races, national origins, abilities, religions, sexual orientations, veteran status, ages, and genders who use the parks and who live in communities nearby parks. This outreach is to focus on engaging in partnerships that expand programs and services in a way that is meaningful and of value to all people. The Commission is dedicated to offering quality experiences to all visitors through a workforce and volunteer corps that reflects the diversity of Washington State.

THE STATE OF WASHINGTON IS AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER . We strive to create a working environment that includes and respects cultural, racial ethnic, sexual orientation and gender identity diversity. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, persons with disabilities, persons over 40 years of age, disabled and Vietnam era veterans and people of all sexual orientations and gender identities are encouraged to apply. Persons needing accommodation in the application process or this announcement in an alternative format may contact the Human Resources Office at (360) 902-8565 or the telecommunications device for the deaf at 1-800-833-6388.

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