From Discovery team to butterfly biologist

Today’s blog was written by Michelle Polley, a Master’s student conducting research at Pinery Provincial Park where she formerly worked as a Discovery ranger.

I had never been lucky enough to camp at a provincial park. So when I started my first summer on the Discovery team at Pinery Provincial Park, I didn’t know what a naturalist’s job entailed.

I also didn’t know how that summer contract would affect the trajectory of my life.

Looking back, my experience brought me skills and experiences that led me down a path to develop my career and interests.

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Communication is key: from student to park superintendent

Today’s blog was written by Dave Ward, park superintendent for Ontario Parks’ Temagami Cluster.

The year is 2007. I had just completed my first year of college and had no idea what direction I wanted to go with my career.

I happened to know someone who worked for Ontario Parks as an interpreter in the Discovery program. It sounded like a fantastic job so I applied online for a student park ranger position.

After a thorough interview process, I was successful in getting a Discovery position at Samuel de Champlain Provincial Park.

Little did I know at the time that my short summer experience with Ontario Parks would slowly turn into a career.

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A journey from the heart of Pinery to school outreach coordinator

Today’s blog was written by Almeera Ahmed, School Outreach Coordinator with the Discovery program.

Born and raised in the urban landscape of Brampton, Ontario, my childhood was far from the serene wilderness that would later define my career path.

Growing up, my encounters with wildlife were confined to the captivating narratives of wildlife documentaries.

However, this exposure was enough to ignite a flame of curiosity and passion for the natural world, propelling me towards a career in the environmental field.

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How to book a virtual school program

Our virtual school programs bring different aspects of Ontario’s natural and cultural heritage into your classroom through stories of the people and landscapes our provincial parks aim to protect.

Each program engages your students through storytelling, activities, discussion, and personal experiences.

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The summer job that lasted seven years

Today’s blog was written by Adrian Petry, Public Historian and Visitor Services Coordinator for St. Catharines Museum & Welland Canals Centre. Adrian can occasionally be found volunteering at historical events at Bronte Creek Provincial Park, where he was a former senior Discovery staff member.

When I think back to my younger entering-the-workforce self, I recognize skills and abilities that would eventually get me to working in public history and interpretation in a traditional museum setting.

But how we got from 18-year-old Adrian to *clears throat* today’s Adrian is thanks in part to the careful polishing of those skills and abilities through seven seasons with Ontario Parks.

If you’re reading this and considering a summer (or seven summers) in our wonderful parks system, don’t just think to the next few months.

Think about where you’ll be in the next *clears throat again* years.

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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.

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Five friends, five departments, one park

Today’s post comes from Zuzanna, Alysa, Lyle, Jackson, and Emily: five friends who applied to Ontario Parks across the province and by a twist of fate, all got jobs at the same provincial park, 1,500 km (or 16 hours) from home!

Are you interested in joining us for the 2024 summer season? Applications are now open!

In early January of last year, we applied to work at parks across the province. Being friends with connections in southern Ontario, we were yearning for seasonal jobs characterized by adventure and wilderness.

After numerous interviews and phone calls, one by one we received job offers from the same park: Quetico Provincial Park.

Once he reviewed our resumes and interviews, our senior operations technician discovered the friendships and previous connections that we had to one another.

Upon consideration of our unique backgrounds, he placed us in distinct departments to align with our individual strengths.

We became five friends in five departments, all at the same provincial park.

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