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ODNR Wants YOU to Join the Next Natural Resources Officer Recruit Class

Apply by December 31 to begin your career in Natural Resources Law Enforcement

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Looking for an exciting, action-packed career that helps others safely enjoy the beauty of Ohio’s state parks, forests, preserves, and waterways? The Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) is accepting applications through December 31 for its new class of Natural Resources Officer cadets. Both experienced, commissioned officers and those looking to start their law enforcement career at ODNR are encouraged to apply.

“Our Natural Resources Officers not only keep our visitors safe, they are also key members of the communities they serve,” ODNR Director Mary Mertz said. “We’re looking for people with the drive to protect our natural spaces and a passion for public service to safeguard the people of Ohio."  

Ideal candidates for this opportunity are active people who love spending time outdoors. Natural Resources Officers patrol Ohio’s state parks, forests, preserves, and waterways. Duties include law enforcement, public service, education, and public relations. You can learn more about a not-so-typical day on the job from current officers in this Natural Resources Officers video.

Top-scoring candidates will undergo interviews and a pre-employment evaluation. Those selected as cadets will complete a training program related to ODNR operations. Following that, cadets will attend the Ohio Peace Officer Basic Training Academy for five months. Cadets who are already certified as peace officers with the State of Ohio will begin field training and will not need to attend the academy.

Applicants must be U.S. citizens, at least 21-years-old, and possess a valid driver’s license. An associate degree, completion of an undergraduate core program, or experience in natural resources, fish and/or wildlife management, criminal justice, environmental law enforcement or related fields, or military experience is also required.

Other qualifications include completing a background check, medical exam, and psychological exam, passing a drug screen, and meeting swim and physical fitness standards. Successful applicants will be assigned to serve in a specific state park area and should apply for the area(s) in which they would like to serve. Learn more and apply here.
The State of Ohio is an equal opportunity employer and provider of Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) services.
The ODNR Division of Parks and Watercraft provides exceptional outdoor recreation and boating opportunities by balancing outstanding customer service, education, and conservation of Ohio’s 75 state parks and waterways.
ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at

For more information, contact:
ODNR Office of Communications
Media Line: 614-265-6860
Mobile: 614-202-4756

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