Current Career Academy for Natural Resources Developments

The Career Academy for Natural Resources is under development. Since the National Park Service (NPS) National Leadership Council approved the creation of the Career Academy in 2008. The NPS Director’s “A Call to Action” specifically identifies the academy program as a process to enhance professional and organizational excellence. Significant progress has been made in establishing the framework of the NPS Career Academy. This guiding framework for all of the career fields has been applied to the Career Academy for Natural Resources. The Career Academy for Natural Resources has been developed with guidance from the members of the National Park Service Natural Resource Advisory Group, sub-committee on training.

A three-day Subject Matter Expert (SME) workshop was held at the Horace Albright Training Center in April 2010. The workshop’s 20 participants were each nominated by their region to participate, along with representatives from the Associate Director, Natural Resource Stewardship and Science program offices.

The group focused on the “Big Picture” and developed a draft framework for the academy based on the defined competencies for the GS-7, 9, 11 & 12 natural resource specialist and program manager positions. Competencies for both discipline specialists and program managers were utilized and essential learning opportunities identified to fulfill those competencies.

The SME workshop was very successful and resulted in a draft framework structure for the organization of learning opportunities. The draft framework includes both the subject matter knowledge and hands-on experience needed to meet the competencies for program managers and discipline specialists. Workshop participants drafted a framework for a blended learning course of study designed to provide developmental opportunities for core competencies at the entry/ developmental, journey, and advanced levels.

Continued work is occurring to refine the draft framework so that development of individual modules can begin in 2012. The goal is to have the foundational series framework and course of study designed in 2012 and to be able to begin limited delivery in 2013. Fully developed courses will be designed to ensure that the material learned will directly correlate to the targeted competency(s). Components of the academy will continue to be designed through a deliberative process including subject matter experts, program managers, field practitioners, and training managers.

Please visit our Academy History page to learn about the creation of the career academy.

For a look at current developments of the Academy concept please view these documents: