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Junior Rangers Youth Jobs


Junior Rangers in the field

What has been your favorite part of being a Junior Ranger?

“(The JR Program) is about friendship, adventure, learning, laughing, leadership, teamwork, and C.U.S.S. (carrying and using tools safely). I am excited to come to work every day and love working with people who are enthusiastic, cooperative, and fun like I am. I like being out in nature and having work to do with the community. It is by far the best job anyone could have.” – Audrey, 1st Year Junior Ranger

4/17/2020 JUNIOR RANGER PROGRAM CANCELLED FOR 2020: We know that this will be profoundly disappointing to you, as we understand how much our dedicated Junior Rangers look forward to this job opportunity every summer. Believe us, we are heartbroken too. Please read this letter pdf for more information about the decision, and 3 minutes to fill out this form to let us know how we can serve you during this time (virtual skill building, volunteer events, other ideas).

Job Summary

Junior Rangers are passionate and motivated teens who want to work together to make a difference on OSMP lands. Junior Rangers serve for one of two sessions during the summer. The job requires commitment, motivation, teamwork, and enthusiasm for new challenges. Becoming a Junior Ranger is a commitment to a real job. A written application, reference form and personal interview are required for consideration. If you are hired, you will be required to keep regular work hours, adhere to uniform requirements, and receive a pay check by direct deposit (including federal identification and tax requirements). No previous work experience is necessary, but a positive attitude is essential.

*You must be at least 14 and not more than 17 years of age by June 2, 2020.

*You must have a personal (not school or parent) email address to login and apply for this job. Please create one if you do not yet have one. 

Disclaimer: These positions are very competitive. Every year we turn away half of the applicants who apply. In 2020, there will be 9 Conservation/Trail Crews and 1 Youth Ranger Crew. If you've applied before, please apply again as we keep track of motivated individuals who apply multiple years in a row.

Junior Ranger Crews

The Junior Ranger Program is the overarching name for two tracks. Applicants can choose between the Youth Ranger Crew or the Conservation/Trail Crews.  

Conservation/Trail Crews

The Conservation/Trail Crews work on trail maintenance and construction, forestry, vegetation, agriculture, and ecological restoration projects. Crews are led by team leaders who have backgrounds in outdoor education, leadership, and conservation. Team leaders create opportunities for Junior Rangers to learn about the natural world and gain valuable work and life skills. The Conservation/Trail Crews work closely with many OSMP workgroups. This provides Junior Rangers the opportunity to explore careers in natural resources and become confident stewards of public lands and leaders in their community. 

Youth Ranger Crew

The Youth Ranger Crew is an opportunity for Junior Rangers to work closely with law enforcement Ranger Naturalists from OSMP. Junior Rangers participate in skills-based training in natural resource management and customer service while exploring career paths in conservation. Junior Rangers are exposed to various aspects of what it means to be park rangers, and by engaging in experiential trainings, participants develop skills that can be applied to their academic and professional pursuits. The Youth Ranger Crew provides Junior Rangers the opportunity to interact with law enforcement officers on a daily basis to help youth build positive connections with law enforcement and professionals in natural resource protection.

2020 Program Dates - CANCELLED for 2020

Conservation/Trail Crews

The Conservation/Trail Crews work Tuesday – Friday, 8 AM – 3:30 PM:

Session 1: June 2 – 26, 2020 (4 weeks)

Session 2: July 7 – 31 (4 weeks) or August 7, 2020 (5 weeks)

Youth Ranger Crew

The Youth Ranger Crew works Monday – Thursday, 8AM – 4 PM:

Session 1: June 1 – July 2, 2020 (5 weeks)

Job Qualifications

  • Must be at least 14 and not more than 17 years of age by the job start date.
  • No previous work experience is necessary, but a positive attitude (flexible, humble, adaptable, coachable) is essential!
  • Strong interest in being a team player; willing to help with less-fun tasks.
  • Demonstrates excitement, commitment, and determination to learn, work, and behave to the best of their ability if chosen for the program.
  • Able to learn safe practices and make good judgments related to safety.
  • Able to follow through on commitments.
  • Successfully complete the application and interview process.
  • Have a genuine desire to participate as a Junior Ranger.
  • Be able to commit to the full work schedule, without missing more than 2 days.

Employment Requirements

  • Personal Email Address: All communication regarding your application, employment, pay and tax information will be sent to you via email. Please make sure to use a personal (not school or parent) email address (that you will check regularly) to log in and apply for this job. Please create one if you do not yet have one.
  • Social Security Number: All City of Boulder employees must have a social security number before they begin work. Please file a number if you do not already have one. Cards may be obtained from the Social Security administration office (1-800-772-1213 FREE).
  • Valid Bank Account: Paychecks are issued by direct deposit. Participants must have a valid account at a financial institution to receive their paychecks.

Application and Interview Process

  • In order to be considered to be a Junior Ranger, all applicants must submit an application with a personal (not school or parent) email address, detailed answers to application questions, and a reference form submitted on the applicant’s behalf. We understand that government applications can be cumbersome, but do your best to fill it out as thoroughly as possible with the information you have (i.e. if you don’t have a Driver’s License Number because you’re not old enough to drive, that’s ok!). We know that this is the first time many of our Junior Ranger Team Member applicants are applying for a job, and we take that into consideration.
    • Need help with your application? Check out the guides below.
    • All applicants who complete an application before the deadline will be invited to complete an in-person interview. You will receive an email to self-schedule your interview in early April, and interviews will be held on April 9th, 10th, and 11th.
    • Returning 3rd and 4th year applicants will be scheduled for informal phone interviews as applications are received.
  • Applicants are prioritized based on application completeness, personal motivation and enthusiasm for the job, availability for job dates, previous team performance and applicable experience. Candidates who have completed an in-person interview will be notified via email of their selection status (either “Offered” or “Waitlisted”) by early May, 2020. Each year we receive many more applications than we can accommodate. If you are unable to accept a position offered to you for some reason, please inform us promptly so that we may offer your place to someone who can.


Junior Rangers are paid an hourly wage. The 2020 wage scale is:

First Year $12.00

Second Year $12.25

Third Year $12.50

Fourth Year $12.75

Work Schedule and Absences

Junior Rangers are expected to arrive on time for work prepared for the day. Conservation/Trail crews work Tuesday through Friday 8 am – 3:30 pm and Youth Ranger crews work Monday through Thursday 8 am – 4 pm.  There is a half hour unpaid lunch break during the day.

Junior Rangers make a commitment to work all days of their assigned session. Junior Rangers must get any absences preapproved by the Youth Service Learning Coordinator two weeks in advance (and are allowed no more than two excused absences outside of emergencies). Please plan your vacations and commitments accordingly. Report emergency absences by 7 am via email to [email protected].

Getting to Work

Junior Rangers must have a reliable way of getting to work each day. There is ample parking for bikes in our locked garage. The RTD bus system has a bus stop right in front of the Wonderland Lake Trailhead on Broadway, our meeting place. Seasonal youth bus passes are available through RTD The program will reimburse Junior Rangers for passes purchased for the period of employment (monthly pass or ticket books) with receipt. Reimbursement information will be provided at point of hire or on the resources page.

Junior Ranger Expectations

Junior Ranger positions are very competitive and very publicly visible. Our crews have lots of fun, but they also work hard. By accepting a position as a Junior Ranger, you agree to follow the Junior Ranger Code of Conduct and demonstrate respect and a positive attitude towards the public, your crew, and yourself.

How to Apply

Junior Ranger Program cancelled for 2020 due to COVID-19 impacts. Recruitment for 2021 – please check back in February for updated information.

I've accepted a job as a Junior Ranger

Learn more about resources for Junior Rangers

“Junior Rangers is a job where you can develop important life skills like time management and discipline. Other things you learn as a Junior Ranger are how to do hard work, while working with a large group. The JR Program also helped me build stronger communication skills. Finally, during my time as a JR I got a greater sense of how many people and hours are needed to create something like a trail. I hope this sense will translate to a greater sense of community with my coworkers at my next job.” – Severin, 2nd Year Junior Ranger