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Fisheries and Wildlife Science – Conservation Law Enforcement Focus

Necropsy Room
Game Warden’s Association scholarship
Students learning about traps
Bighorn sheep in Yellowstone National Park
The Fisheries and Wildlife Sciences degree (B.S.) with a Conservation Law Enforcement Focus prepares students for law enforcement careers related to natural resource protection with state and federal agencies. The most commonly held position with this focus is that of a Game Warden. Game Wardens are certified peace officers that dedicate their careers to enforcing laws related to natural resources. Game wardens may also be called conservation officers, game protectors, wildlife control agents, wildlife officers, and special agents. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has Federal wardens that are called Special Agents or Wildlife Inspectors, and often Refuge Managers also carry out law enforcement duties. Wildlife inspectors are responsible for ensuring that all wildlife shipments coming in and out of the country comply with federal laws.

Graduates are also qualified for positions as Park Rangers with agencies such as the North Dakota Parks and Recreation Department and the National Park Service. In addition, this focus should benefit you in any natural resource position where you have some enforcement duty as part of your job.

Each agency has specific training requirements related to law enforcement. The Federal system will send employees through the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center. North Dakota Game and Fish Department will send newly hired Game Wardens through the ND Peace Officer Training Program.

Multiple field trips involving hands-on experience are taken in all wildlife and fisheries courses. Faculty strongly encourage students to obtain summer work experience through summer internships, and to do a ride-along with a ND Game Warden.