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California State Parks invites outdoor enthusiasts to “Live the Parks Life” by becoming a ranger or lifeguard in the nation’s largest state park system. The 2019 State Park Peace Officer (SPPO) Cadet application period is now open. Career opportunities are available throughout the entire state. All applicants must submit an application by Monday, June 3, 2019, to be considered for the 2020 SPPO Cadet Academy.

For over 150 years, rangers and lifeguards have worked closely with the state’s network of local, state and federal law enforcement agencies to protect visitors to California’s parks. In addition to protecting the safety of our visitors, rangers and lifeguards also protect the natural, cultural and historic resources preserved for future generations. Whether patrolling in desert landscapes, lakes, among wildlife and wildflowers, museums, or in historic landmarks, it is truly a unique experience to work for California State Parks.

“My time in the cadet academy taught me to be part of something bigger than myself, said California State Parks Ranger Sabrina Buis. “I graduated as something more than a peace officer – I am an ambassador and protector to California’s amazing natural and cultural resources and the visitors enjoying them.”

Successful applicants will attend a six- to eight-month Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) certified law enforcement training academy. Their training will include lessons on how to make physical arrests, conduct investigations, perform emergency medical aid and use defensive tactics and firearms. Cadets will also learn how to assist visitors, run public education and interpretive programs and actively protect park resources. The academy instruction prepares the students mentally, morally, emotionally and physically to enter and successfully complete the Field Training Program, which is composed of 13 more weeks of on-the-job training.

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The selection process for becoming a ranger or lifeguard takes approximately 15 to 18 months. The first step in the selection/examination process is submitting an application. The application is used to determine if the candidate meets the minimum qualifications for admission into the examination. It may subsequently be used to admit the candidate into the next phases of the selection process (background investigation, oral interview, medical and psychological evaluation).

California State Parks is excited for the opportunity to reach potential candidates who are reflective of California’s diverse population. For more information on the academy and minimum requirements, including Frequently Asked Questions and a general timeline of the recruitment cycle, please visit www.LiveTheParksLife.com and click on the “State Park Peace Officer Cadets” link.

With more than 340 miles of coastline, 970 miles of lake and river frontage, 15,000 campsites and 4,500 miles of trails, State Parks provides for the health, inspiration and education of the people of California by helping to preserve the state’s extraordinary biological diversity, protecting its most valued natural and cultural resources and creating opportunities for high-quality outdoor recreation. Off-highway motor vehicle recreation, boating activities, horseback riding, on- and off-road cycling, hiking, camping and rock climbing are some of the recreational activities enjoyed in 280 state parks.