Local Inupiaq youth can't wait to wear a flat hat!

a young man stands on volcanic rocks with a beautiful sky in the background

John Smith revels in his first experience in Bering Land Bridge National Preserve

NPS Photo - Andrea Willingham

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Nome-Beltz high school Senior John Smith can't wait to wear a park ranger flat hat. He spent his summer learning a few new things about the area he calls home. Drawing on this newly acquired knowledge, and his experience from growing up in the area, he taught visitors, coworkers, and people in the community about Bering Land Bridge National Preserve. This was not his only task for the summer though. He also helped keep the preserve running smoothly by answering phones, filing paperwork, and many other administrative tasks that keep a preserve in working order. If that was not enough to keep him busy, he got to experience maintaining our facilities and buildings.

John most enjoyed getting to experience the vast beauty of the preserve and gained a new love of hiking. Like most youth in Nome, AK, John had never been into the preserve because it is only accessible by plane or snow machine. He talked in his NPS blog about his first experience in the preserve as he was entranced by the unique beauty of Serpentine Hotsprings.

This is not the end of employment with the NPS for John. As he looks toward college, he hopes to take what he has learned here and continue working for the park service, and maybe even wear a flat hat in his next job.