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Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Hunt for summer jobs starts now

Mystic Aquarium, DEM announce plans for seasonal hiring
By Will Collette

Image result for summer jobsCharlestown latest unemployment rate is 4.3% according to the RI Department of Labor and Training. That’s well above Rhode Island’s average of 3.9%. It’s also higher than the average for South County, reported at 4%.

In more concrete terms, that means that roughly 200 of our Charlestown neighbors are looking for full-time jobs on any given day.

Some of them (or their kids) may need to pay close attention to recent announcements about work opportunities coming up this summer, as Mystic Aquarium plans a Job Fair on March 21 and 23, while DEM announces its summer hiring plan with the lure of higher pay than past seasons.

Here are the notices from Mystic and DEM.

On-Site Interviews Available March 21 & 23

With the warmer months fast approaching, Mystic Aquarium is hosting its annual career fair with immediate on-site interviews available on Thursday, March 21 and Saturday, March 23. A wide-array of great seasonal part-time positions are available.

WHEN:                 Thursday, March 21, 3:30pm- 5:30pm
Saturday, March 23, 10am-2pm

WHERE:               Mystic Aquarium, 55 Coogan Blvd., Mystic, CT 06355

Mystic Aquarium seeks enthusiastic, team-oriented individuals for seasonal part-time employment for positions including:

Guest Services Specialists
Admission Specialists

Mystic Aquarium’s sister company Ocean Blue Catering will also be onsite seeking servers and TIPS- certified bartenders.

Registration will be available at the Aquarium’s main admission gate on both days.

At every level of employment, Mystic Aquarium team members are playing a key role in accomplishing the mission to inspire others to care for and protect our ocean planet by providing safe, enjoyable and meaningful experiences.  Mystic Aquarium is proud to provide a welcoming and supportive destination for guests, employees and volunteers alike.

Mystic Aquarium, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization, is counted among the nation’s leading aquariums with more than 300 species and an extensive collection of marine mammals, including New England’s only belugas. Mystic Aquarium has been a pioneer in offering guests a variety of up close encounters with a wide range of marine animals. The mission of Mystic Aquarium is to inspire people to care for and protect our ocean planet through conservation, education and research. Mystic Aquarium receives major support from The Coca-Cola Company, Foxwoods Resort Casino, Resorts World Sentosa and United Technologies Corporation. Learn more at

DEM Announces Recruitment For Key Summertime To Staff Parks and Beaches


With the 16- to 19-year-old labor pool continuing to shrink, DEM hopes to recruit active senior citizens & retired military personnel to fill key job openings this summer

Having boosted pay rates for lifeguards and beach managers, the RI Department of Environmental Management (DEM) today is launching its recruitment to staff state parks and beaches for the summer of 2019. 

With only 42 fulltime employees managing 25 parks and preserves, eight saltwater beaches, and dozens of other properties, DEM's Division of Parks and Recreation relies hugely on seasonal employees. 

Every year, it hires between 400 and 450 "seasonals" to fill essential summertime positions such as lifeguards, park rangers, beach managers, restroom attendants, laborers, and nature educators.

"Our parks and beaches are loved not only for their beauty but also for their accessibility. Hiring a robust seasonal workforce factors significantly into keeping our special places special and accessible," said DEM Director Janet Coit. 

"It is our summer seasonal workers like lifeguards, park rangers, and restroom attendants who truly 'make the experience' for the nine million visits made by Rhode Islanders and out-of staters who every year add about $350 million into the economy in consumer spending and taxes, and support nearly 4,000 jobs. This year, we're thrilled to be able to kick off our recruitment by offering higher pay than ever for lifeguards and beach managers and flexible, 20-hour workweeks for lifeguard positions at our busiest swimming areas."

Coit is referring to a pay raise just approved by the RI Department of Administration through which DEM can now pay lifeguards a range from $13.25 to $16.25 an hour – up from an hourly range of $10.75 to $13.75. DEM also has upped wages for beach managers, who ultimately are responsible for the safety of all patrons at state swimming areas and have the authority to close swimming areas in case of unsafe conditions. 

In 2018, DEM paid beach managers at non-surf beaches (examples: Goddard Memorial and Lincoln Woods state parks) $13 an hour and $14.25 an hour at surf (saltwater) beaches. This year, DEM is paying $15.50 an hour for non-surf managers and $16.75 an hour for surf managers. These rates will allow DEM to come closer to paying what private beach and pool clubs and some municipal beaches across Rhode Island pay to attract summertime workers.

With 50 percent fewer teens seeking jobs than 20 years ago, DEM is looking to recruit active senior citizens and retired military personnel who might want to work part-time work to make up for the lack of younger applicants. 

The teen labor shortage in 2018 meant DEM had just enough employees needed to operate its more than 25 beaches, parks, and campgrounds but was stretched tight, with the Parks and Recreation Division having to shift lifeguards from one property to another to ensure adequate coverage during busy weekends of the high season. For example, the optimal number of lifeguards at Misquamicut State Beach is 27 but last year, 

DEM could fill only 22 spots. Optimally, East Matunuck State Beach has 20 lifeguards but had only 17 in 2018, and Goddard Memorial State Park had four fewer lifeguards than is ideal last summer (three versus seven).

DEM is seeking qualified lifeguards at beaches, parks, and campgrounds. Full-time lifeguard positions are available at all state swimming areas, including saltwater beaches such as Roger Wheeler and Scarborough, non-surf beaches such as Goddard, and freshwater beaches such as Burlingame Campground and Lincoln Woods State Park.

Rhode Island residents, ages 16 and older, are encouraged to apply.

All lifeguard candidates must have successfully completed courses and hold valid cards in lifeguard training, first aid, and CPR including infant, child, and adult. For those who have not yet had accredited training, there are training classes offered at the Community College of Rhode Island.
Applicants to park ranger positions at levels II and III must be 18 years of age or older. 

Applications must be completed online at Paper applications will not be accepted. The State of Rhode Island is an Equal Opportunity /diversity employer.

DEM's Division of Parks and Recreation participates in employment fairs at local colleges and high schools to recruit for all summer seasonal positions. DEM will appear at Bishop Hendricken High School today, the University of Rhode Island tomorrow, and the Community College of Rhode Island April 17. 

If your school is interested in hosting DEM at a job fair, contact Tom Rosa in the Division of Parks & Recreation at 667-6207 or email

For more information about DEM divisions and programs, visit Follow us on Facebook at or on Twitter (@RhodeIslandDEM) for timely updates.

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