Monday, July 1, 2013
INDE NHP WEEK 5
Sunday evening I came into the ranger station ready to start my 5th week here at INDE. Although I haven’t been here long I have done a lot of cool things and I look forward to coming into work every day. I gear up in the men’s locker room and head to the main office in 339. In the main office I greet every one and have a seat at one of the computers to start my shift. I log onto the PC and respond to a few emails that were sent to me during my days off. After housekeeping I log onto DoiLearn and began a training course about the constitution. This training course was quit informative. It discussed the creation of the constitution and how it applies to the government and citizens. In all I think these important documents are absolutely necessary to keep the United States organized. I read each and every module and completed the course. Like the other courses I've successfully completed, I printed out my certificate to keep for my records.
After taking the online course I posted my new blog on the Pro Ranger Blog site. I am getting a lot of great feedback from members of Temple University and The National Parks Service. It’s an awesome feeling to see positive reactions from the internships we do and the blogs we write. After I posted my blog I logged onto the uniform website to check out the gear available and see what I need to order. I logged off the PC and went on foot patrol for a few hours. I also checked Franklin Court inside and out. Patrolling and conducting building checks are becoming routine and I am being more observant when I’m in the field. Franklin court was clear so I headed to Independence Hall with Ranger Melissa.
At Independence Hall I stopped and talked to the 2 Sectek guards. We talked about fitness and eating healthier. Being physically fit is something that is mandatory in law enforcement. Your body needs to be healthy and ready to be physical. After patrolling around Independence Mall I head in to 339 and take a lunch break. Every time I step out of the office I observe the visitors on park property making sure nothing unusual is happening. With my eyes I clear my surroundings and head into the ranger station. At the ranger station I take a break but not before long I am back on the clock. The night is slow, some of the rangers are out contacting visitors and others are on the computers completing projects. The rest of the night I check the Pro Rangers blog site again and added comments to the newly posted blogs from my fellow Pro Rangers. I then start my new blog for this week and get myself ready to head home. I leave the ranger station around 0330.
Monday I walked into 339 with enough time to settle in and change into my uniform. I greeted the day shift LE Rangers and went up to the men’s locker room to get myself ready for the night shift. I came down stairs and met Ranger Martina. The both of us headed over to Independence Square to screen a few visitors who had permits to record a documentary at the park. At independence square there was another ranger and a Sectek guard there as well. The LE rangers screened the Visitors and we escorted them around the area.
While they were recording their documentary Ranger Martina gave me some advice about patrolling. She advised me that when making contacts as law enforcement officer you must always maintain professional and inform the contact why you are contacting them. Usually you can keep the contact and yourself safe and sound by maintaining effective communication. Interpretation Rangers were also outside with us so all the questions that the visitors were asking were answered. We escorted the visitors with a permit into Independence Hall. Interpretation and LE Rangers were there to protect the resources and the visitors. As always it’ was great to witness the staff from the different divisions of INDE working together to achieve the National Parks Service’s Mission. I left Independence Hall and walked into the east wing. The east wing is a part of independence Hall that is attached to its east side and on the other side there is a west wing that is connected to Independence Hall as well.
The rest of the night I checked 339, The Liberty Bell center and the Independence Visitor Center IVC with Ranger Dottie, looking for lost property. I spent the end of my shift observing dispatch and how they operate. When I was in dispatch I talked to Will about the Pro Ranger program, the new experiences that the program has brought me and also about the difference between the commissions you earn at the seasonal academy and FLETC. Will had spoken to me about his work experience in and outside of the National Park Service. I saw the different types of computers and monitors at dispatch and asked as many questions as I could think of. Not too much longer dispatcher Rydeam walked into dispatch and began his shift. The dispatchers taught me the difference in the alarm sounds that go off in their office. By listening and being able to identify the different sounds, they can determine what type of alarms the rangers need to respond to. I finished my shift at dispatch, returned to 339 to get out my uniform and exited the park.
Tuesday I arrived at work 3 hours early so that Ranger Snow and I could meet with Ranger Alan. We discussed a new task he wants me to complete involving inventory. This is the second inventory project I have been given, but this one is different from the last. With this one I will need to create a list of the hazardous products and chemicals we have in the R&VP division. Also I need to attach Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS) for each product and chemical. After meeting with him I headed back to the ranger station where I could organize my thoughts and the task given to me. The day shift began to come to an end and the night shift came in soon after.
Ranger Juan and I took a few extra patrol bikes from the Ranger Station to 313. While walking back Juan was stopped by a group of visitors. I stepped into 339 and began editing my blogs. On the computer I tried to complete another course on Doilearn; however the course would not completely load so I figured I would try again later on another computer. I got out the office and foot patrolled The Park with Ranger Melissa. We closed Christ Church garden and headed toward Independence Hall. I left Independence Hall and came back to 339 to update my blog post again and get permission to take PT. During PT physical training I focused more on weight lifting and less on cardio. I usually try to balance the two, but with the advice of some of the rangers and guards here I choose to switch it up tonight. I ended my 10 hour shift took off my gear and left.
Wednesday I arrived at INDE ready to finish the work week. I got geared up and headed to the main office in 339 to check my emails. While online I added a few details to my blog and logged off the computer. Rangers Snow, Martina and I headed to the Liberty Bell Center to watch the rally out in the field. It was rainy so before we all left the office we put on our rain gear so we could stay as dry as possible. Once we reached Independence mall by 5th and market, we noticed a small crowd getting together to celebrate the Supreme Courts gay marriage ruling. They were in the area from 6-9pm. As the weather cleared up a few more people came out and supported the rally. Halfway through the event most of the LE Rangers left the scene and headed to the east wing of independence hall to have our weekly briefing.
In the east wing we waited for the rest of the rangers to show up. Once they did arrive the supervisors shared information about upcoming events in the park, the resources we have and the amount of coverage. I was asked to come in early on my next working day. The meeting didn't take long and we all headed back out into the field. I jumped into the cruiser with Ranger Stevens and we closed Christ Church gates and also checked the exterior of the church. After that we visually cleared a few more areas in the park and I was dropped off at the Ranger Station. At the Ranger station I spoke to the rangers about upcoming events at the park. The staff at INDE is always planning ahead and I think it’s a great thing to do. It helps the operation run smoother when you’re better prepared for each work day.
The rest of the night I spent in 339 working with QuickTime and Microsoft excel entering my time and attendance. Before, someone used to enter my time for me using a spreadsheet I created, however now the Pro rangers have been trained and given access to QuickTime to start entering payroll for ourselves. This was a good thing because as men and women we should be accountable for entering our own time and attendance. Ending my shift I went over some operation details with Ranger Martina. Martina has been a great help to me since she has started. I think the experience she has working with different parks has made her a great ranger. I ended my shift and the next few days I will have off and I plan on spending it with my family.
Until next week bloggers