Monday, May 7, 2012
Twenty students from Barstow High School spent a day in Mojave National Preserve with park staff to learn about NPS careers. Students chose which of several career fields they would like to explore, including Park Ranger, Wildlife Biologist, Lands Restoration Specialist, Wildland Firefighter, and Geologist. The students then spent the morning working in small groups with NPS employees in their chosen fields to learn firsthand about the job.
Activities included planning a tamarisk removal project, surveying abandoned mines for safety hazards, using hand tools for firefighting, evaluating wildlife habitat using vegetation surveys, and learning how to process a crime scene. Students interviewed NPS staff about why they choose their career field, educational requirements, and what they like and don’t like about their jobs. After lunch, students toured the exhibits at Kelso Depot Visitor Center. For many, it was their first visit to Mojave National Preserve. On the long bus ride home, students talked about their experiences and shared photos of their activities.
This Career Day event inaugurates Mojave National Preserve’s partnership with Barstow High School’s Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics Academy (STEM) in fulfilling Action Item 15: A Class Act, of the Call to Action. STEM teachers are working with park staff to expand the program and to develop a succession of activities for each year of high school.