How to become a park ranger at Ontario Parks

Applications for the 2024 season are open! Read on to learn about how you can spend your summer with Ontario Parks.

Calling all Ontario students!

Do you enjoy the outdoors and have an appreciation for Ontario’s natural and cultural resources?

Are you self-motivated, with a positive attitude and a desire to learn?

Do you enjoy working and interacting with the public?

Then this is the job for you!

Don’t miss the opportunity to apply for a position as a student park ranger with Ontario Parks this summer.

When do I apply?

Applications are now open for the 2024 season. 

Applications are reviewed on a first come, first serve basis. The fourth round of applications will close on April 29, 2024. Apply early to increase your chances of being selected!

Who can apply?

To be eligible for a summer student job with Ontario Parks, applicants must meet the following criteria:

Student Status: You must be enrolled in a secondary or post-secondary institution (currently or for the 2024 fall semester) OR you must have graduated within the past six months (for example, if you graduated in December 2023, you can apply for and start a summer student position up until June of the following year). Your school does not need to be located in Ontario to be eligible.

Age: You must be a minimum of 15 years of age. There is no maximum age limit. Some positions may require you to be over 16 years of age.

Residency: You must be a resident of Ontario during the term of employment.

How do I apply?

Apply to be a park ranger by visiting the Ontario Public Service Careers website.

Use the filters to search for student positions, select the Summer Employment Opportunities Program posting, scroll to the Parks and Recreation heading and select the position you are interested in.

Once there, you will have the option to select which job type you are interested in and which parks you would like to apply for.

Three Ontario Parks staff wearing their taupe uniform shirts, sitting behind a campfire and smiling at the camera.

Applicants are also required to attach a copy of their resume.

We recommend including the positions and parks you are interested in on your resume and submitting your resume as a PDF file.

For a few more tips to make your resume the best it can be, check out these resources:

What position should I apply for?

At Ontario Parks, there are many types of park ranger positions, including:

  • Discovery ranger
  • gate attendant
  • store clerk
  • maintenance worker
  • park ambassador

…and more!

Let’s take a deeper dive into a few of these positions:

Discovery ranger

staff looking at plover model with child

Discovery rangers participate in a wide variety of activities, including delivering programs to help visitors connect with the natural and cultural resources found within the park.

These positions also support conservation efforts by monitoring species that are invasive or at risk and engaging visitors in community science initiatives.

There are two types of Discovery Programs you can work in. Check out this blog to learn more!

Gate attendant / store clerk

An Ontario Parks staff person smiling and greeting a park visitor at the gatehouse.

Be the first smiling face to greet visitors once they arrive at the park!

Our gate attendants welcome and direct visitors around the park while registering campers and issuing campsite permits.

Both gate attendants and store clerks manage cash flow and credit transactions, provide retail services, and facilitate communication between departments.

Maintenance worker

Two Ontario Parks staff members wearing neon yellow high visibility shirts. Together, they are lifting and moving a wooden picnic table.

Maintenance workers use a variety of tools to clean and maintain park facilities like campsites, public areas, and comfort stations.

Maintenance covers a lot of ground, managing recycling and garbage removal, removing hazards on trails, and even assisting with water testing for comfort stations and swimming areas!

Jack of all trades, this is the job for you!

Park ambassador

staff walking on trail with visitor

Do you have a passion for camping and want to share it with the province?

Our award-winning park ambassador is looking for staff to teach new campers the ins and outs of car camping. You could be doing so in person, virtually, or a mix of both! 

Still not sure what job suits you best?

Take this quiz to figure out which position with Ontario Parks might be right for you!

What parks should I apply to?

No matter which park you apply to, you’re bound to have a memorable experience and make lifelong friends!

But there are a few things to consider…

You may want to stick close to home. In that case, you can find the park nearest to you using our Park Locator.

staff answering phone

Most of our parks require you to have accommodations nearby.

However, if you’re feeling adventurous and would like to experience a new area of Ontario, there are some parks that offer staff accommodations.

Please note that applicants may only select a maximum of 10 parks to submit their applications to. Multiple applications will result in only the most recent submission being considered. 

Have more questions?

Want to hear more about what it’s like working and living in a park? Need more tips and tricks for navigating the application process?

Book an informal 15 minute one-on-one virtual meeting with Ontario Parks staff here!

Apply today!

We are committed to building a workforce that reflects the communities we serve and to promote a diverse, anti-racist, inclusive, accessible, merit-based, respectful, and equitable workplace. We invite all interested individuals to apply and encourage applications from people with disabilities, Indigenous, Black, and racialized individuals, as well as people from a diversity of ethnic and cultural origins, sexual orientations, gender identities, and expressions.

Visit the OPS Anti-Racism Policy website and the OPS Diversity and Inclusion Blueprint pages to learn more about the OPS commitment to advance racial equity, accessibility, diversity, and inclusion in the public service.