Alumna explores the outdoors with National Park Service

February 26, 2019

One of Amanda Diller’s (’17) favorite semesters at Liberty was during her junior year when she served as a community group leader on her residence hall. She led the group on many outdoor adventures like camping and hiking.

The Anchorage, Alaska, native took that adventurous spirit with her after graduation, when she landed a job as a park ranger at Yellowstone National Park.

“I’ve always loved the outdoors,” Diller said. “There is nothing like being at a job that allows me to be outside every day and meet people from all over who come to explore the wilderness.”

Established as the world’s first national park in 1872, Yellowstone spans nearly 3,500 square miles across three states (Wyoming, Idaho, and Montana).

Diller, who graduated with a B.S. in Criminal Justice, applied for several internships within the park service and was selected for Yellowstone.

“My internship was pretty broad,” she said. “They wanted to give you as much experience as possible. I would clear hiking trails of debris, prepare campsites, and care for six horses.”

Diller is stationed at the Bechler Ranger Station in the southwest corner of the park.

“It’s a very remote area, so I get to personally talk with each visitor that comes through our station,” Diller said. “It’s away from the main tourist areas of the park, which I love.”

The southwest corner, also called Cascade Corner, is known for its many waterfalls and access to the hot springs across Yellowstone.

“It’s a beautiful area and one of my favorites,” Diller said. “There are several trails through open meadows to the Pitchstone Plateau with a 30-mile trail to Old Faithful.”

Diller said her time at Liberty prepared her for the field.

“I loved the criminal justice program,” Diller said. “My professors were extremely knowledgeable and worked in the field before they taught. Jobs within the National Park Service are extremely competitive. I took a class about working at the federal level, and Liberty offered me resources that helped me create a résumé for applying for a federal job. All of that helped me get to where I am.”

Diller said she plans to continue working as a ranger during the summers, but is open to exploring a career as a law enforcement ranger.

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