NPS Academy

NPS Academy

Generously funded by Grand Teton National Park Foundation


National Park Service (NPS) Academy is an innovative program designed to introduce diverse undergraduate and graduate students, ages 18 to 30 from across the country to career opportunities with the NPS. Successful candidates come away equipped with enthusiasm, professionalism, a strong work ethic and knowledge about the NPS mission and Universal Competencies. The NPS Academy maximizes career opportunities with NPS through training and hands on experiences. This program is generously funded by Grand Teton National Park Foundation.

The major goals of the NPS Academy are to: 

  • Connect diverse students with hands-on and experiential opportunities, introducing career paths within the NPS;
  • Develop “on-the-job” training to participants through summer internships at national park units;
  • Foster NPS mentor relationships deepening students’ knowledge of and connection to the NPS;
  • Provide ambassador roles for students to engage their college, university or community, sharing their experience and promoting NPS and stewardship opportunities with their peers and faculty


The NPS Academy was launched in 2011 by the National Park Service (NPS) and partners. ACE facilitated the program in 2019 for the first time, and since 2011 more than 500 interns have successfully completed the NPS Academy.


To enhance workforce diversity by connecting qualified, dynamic college students and young adults and offering an experiential, transformative program designed around three themes – Connections, Diversity, Legacy – that build a conservation ethic, cultural awareness, and career readiness. Through career exploration, students are exposed to universal competencies that are a foundation for all National Park Service career paths.

The ideal candidate is:

  • Individuals who self-identify as being from diverse and/or traditionally underrepresented backgrounds in NPS
  • US Citizens or Permanent Residents (required)
  • 18-30 years of age at time of hire, or 31-35 with justification for nontraditional career path
  • Current undergraduate & graduate students, trades candidates or recent graduates
  • Available for one week in March and twelve weeks in the summer (required)
  • Open-minded and has an adventurous spirit
  • Toward the end of a college career and/or significant work experience
  • Not necessary to be experienced in conservation or National Parks
  • Eager to act as an ambassador for ACE and the NPS
  • A licensed driver
  • Able to provide references with an application

Download the NPS Academy flyer for more information or to spread the word.

Or contact Peter Woodruff – 801.989.7069 –


2020 locations will include Grand Teton National Park, Yellowstone National Park, Rocky Mountain National Park and Acadia National Park

Benefits include:

  • $400/week living allowance stipend
  • Housing provided
  • Eligibility for AmeriCorps Education Award of ~$1,600
  • Travel reimbursement for approved expenses
  • Opportunity to participate in an expense paid week long orientation, in March
  • Hands-on experience
  • Additional career preparation and ongoing support