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ANPR Newsletter
May 2021


A monthly e-newsletter from the Association of National Park Rangers
Compiled by Elsa Hansen, Board Member for Internal Communications

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The Spring Campaign Continues
Have you had a chance to donate to ANPR’s spring fundraiser yet? Now is the perfect time! Our goal is to raise $8,000 by May 31.
 
We've already raised $3,500 thanks to your support!

While you can choose which project you would most like to support, might I suggest a donation to ANPR’s general operating fund. This money helps ANPR cover the expenses of Ranger magazine and the software and expertise necessary to enhance our website. Any amount you give will be greatly appreciated and help keep ANPR financially stable in 2021.
 
To those who’ve already donated, thank you!
 
Ranger Rendezvous 44 - Rangering in the New Reality
The improving public health situation across the United States means ANPR is excited to invite you to Ranger Rendezvous 44 in Jacksonville, Florida!  After last year’s enjoyable but socially-distant, virtual meeting, we are glad to be planning to meet face-to-face this October 12-17. Set the time aside so that you can reconnect and recharge with fellow ANPR members! Here is the general schedule of activities:
  • October 12-13: Training sessions
  • October 13: Board of Directors meet (members invited to sit in)
  • October 14, 16 and 17: Keynote presentations, panels, concurrent breakout sessions. President’s Reception evening of October 14 and Awards event with entertainment evening of October 16
  • October 15: Field trips or other recreational activities on your own
  • October 15 (evening reception) – noon October 17: Exhibits
Rendezvous registration will open from June 1. Check the ANPR website for more information as it becomes available at anpr.org/44
 
If you are interested in presenting a workshop on a topic of interest, or presenting a “poster” for members to learn of an activity, please contact bwade@anpr.org to begin discussion.

Be on the lookout for a full Rendezvous email on its way shortly!
Mapping the NPS's Online Presence

Question:
Do you know how many social media accounts are being operated by the National Park Service?

We're fairly confident that no one knows that answer with certainty. Why is it we believe that?...

We looked! 

What we found is that the National Park Service absolutely towers above any other federal agency when it comes to the number of places media is shared, and ANPR wanted to do something about making it more accessible. With so much quality Ranger content at stake, we need to know where it's all going!
 
 
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Assessing Your Stress

In a previous newsletter, we shared news of a tragic loss of life within the NPS family. Everyone experiences and reacts to stress differently. Right now in the NPS, we are facing increased visitation, continued COVID protocols, etc., while our world faces many other challenges. It’s a good time to check in with yourself and your co-workers to ensure safety and success in the workplace and in life.
 
The stress-continuum is one tool to monitor your ability to cope and perform with stressful situations. It was first created for use by the US Marine Corps, but is now applied to a variety of settings. It provides a common language to identify our mental health status. Sharing with someone that you are “in the orange” paints a full picture of how well (or not) you are currently doing. Take a moment to pause and reflect, asking yourself these questions: Where am I today? Which stage describes me right now? Several stress-continuum models also share a “what now” section, providing actions to help steer you back into the green.  
 
Consider finding a stress continuum online, printing it out, and posting it in your work area. May it act as a catalyst for conversations regarding mental health, or act as tool to help us put a name to what we are currently experiencing/feeling. None of us are alone in the challenges facing the NPS. It’s important for us to recognize where our stress levels are, identify what we need to thrive, and work together to support each other.
 
HOME | Responder Alliance is one of the many online resources that discuss the stress continuum.



Would You Like to be Interviewed About Your Illustrious NPS Career?
 

ANPR has been contacted from a group wishing to interview Park Rangers for a series titled 70 Over 70. Here's the description:

70 Over 70, an upcoming podcast from Pineapple Street Studios (The Catch and Kill Podcast with Ronan Farrow, Wind of Change with New Yorker writer Patrick Radden Keefe, Strong Black Lead with Netflix) is looking to interview park rangers over 70 years old. The podcast will feature stories, interviews, and wisdom from 70 people over the age of 70 with varied life experiences, asking each participant to tell a story from their life as it relates to the past and who they are now. (For example, what's a moment of the changing seasons that you've always loved to witness? Who first taught you how to enjoy the outdoors, and how do you pass that on to young people today?) They're asking for an hourlong phone call for each interviewee. If you're interested, please get in touch with reporter Charley Locke (crslocke@gmail.com).

Alternatively reach out to ask.a.ranger@anpr.org if you have further questions about this exciting chance to share your story!
Leadership and Teamwork Corner by Bill Pierce
 
The Ideal Team Standards that we will discuss here are ones that have been developed over time by many high performance teams, but, as we have discussed before, you and your team will need to develop your own based on extensive communication and working together. This discussion will hopefully give you a starting point in developing your team standards and revising them as you operate together over time.

We will discuss the following team standards: Communication, Team Decision Making, Planning, Facing up, Cost Consciousness, Traditions, and Standards of Excellence.
 
 
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Updates On Our USA Hire Survey
 
As ANPR continues to monitor the impact that the USA Hire Assessment is having on the NPS's ability to hire the best candidates for positions we'd like to provide you with an update on the data we've received thus far. 

To date ANPR has received 91 survey responses, 86 of which came from job seekers with the remaining 5 coming from hiring officials. 

Below is the distribution on the responses received to the question "The USA Hire assessment is more effective at determining my fit for a job than the prior knowledge, skills, and abilities (A-E assessments)?"

At this time, ANPR can say that after collecting this information, making our findings available, and conveying our concerns, preliminary reports are showing that the USA Hire Assessment is not being required or recommended for the hiring of seasonals and term employees. Thus far we have been unable to find guidance on recommendations for permanent positions. 

Further, HR Specialists did say that they are working with OPM to get further guidance on what secondary assessments would be appropriate for the high volume of applicants for seasonal positions.

While ANPR supports these developments, they are still preliminary reports and we will continue to seek out information on the topic.
 

Read More About Our Efforts On ANPR.org

Association of National Park Rangers
Educate • Engage • Empower
PO Box 151432
Alexandria, VA 22315

ask.a.ranger@anpr.org
 

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