04 Sep Meet Ranger Allie!
Its going to be about two months now since I have arrived at Fire Island and I have been loving every minute of it. My days are filled with learning about the park, roving the trails and the beach, helping visitors at the visitor center, and working on translations and videos at Headquarters. Over the past months I have been able to meet various staff members from different divisions and learn about their career and lives and hear each of their inspiring stories and journey.
Throughout my experience with the National Park service I have gotten lucky to have guides or mentors to help along the way and take me under their wing to teach me their ways. Here at Fire Island I have been blessed enough to have multiple people who have welcomed me with open arms and has helped me throughout this adventure. I wanted to write this blog to highlight one person out of the group who has taken me under her wing ever since I met her on my first day and has shown me all beauty fire island has to offer.
Ranger Allie Sliney is and Interpretation Ranger here at Fire Island National Seashore (FIIS); this being her 4th season here at the park. After graduating from the University of Rhode Island with a degree in Wildlife and Conservation Biology she became an intern through the Student Conservation Association (SCA) and worked here at FIIS as her first job with the NPS. Since a young girl she had a strong passion for the environment, conservation, and marine biology thus FIIS being the perfect place for her to start her career off.
Why did you decide to come back after you first experience here? How does it feel to be back for the 4th time?
“It feels good it’s an interesting season and it has been an adjustment due to everything happening with COVID-19 but it’s a place that I really enjoy which is why I keep coming back to it. I love the beach, the park and what we teach here, the people, and overall, the atmosphere here. Its been a great experience so far.”
Compared to others Allie is brand new to the national park service but in the past few seasons that she been here, she has been able to learn just as much and work alongside and learn from many amazing rangers that later became her mentors too.
As an interpretation ranger, she has been able to take part and or create various programs for visitors to enjoy such as canoe programs, tours through the salt marsh, seining and fishing with young junior rangers, and many more. This year the park has had to adjust since a lot had to change due to the pandemic. Many of those programs that Allie did in the past had to be cancelled for this season and many visitors stopped coming to the park but with the help of the staff, Allie has been able to take Fire Island to the Visitor- by creating virtual educational programs and videos for everyone to enjoy.
Do you think being part of an internship like the SCA program helped you get where you are today? Do you think internships like LHIP and SCA are important?
“Yes, I do think they are important. The reason I am here today is because I was able to be a part of the SCA program and because my internship experience was amazing, and it opened a new path for me…. I want to continue to work for the NPS and travel around the country and learn about parks and teach people about them. I have this passion for the NPS now because of my internship,”
I have been lucky enough to learn more about Ranger Allie everyday as she teaches me about Fire Island and talks about her experience here. I relate to her story in many ways and that’s why I look up to her and hope to one day wear the iconic NPS hat as proud as she does.
Big thanks to Ranger Allie Sliney for being one of the many reasons I love working here at Fire Island National Seashore.
Stay tuned to my future blogs and updates on my internship!