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Phoenix Forward

University of Phoenix partners with national parks

With close to 400 park areas spanning 84 million acres of land in the U.S., our national parks offer some of the most awesome sights on the planet and commemorate important people and events in our history.

The National Park System added its latest national monument at the home and gravesite of  farmworkers’ leader Cesar Chavez in Keene, Calif. It was formally dedicated Oct. 8 by President Barack Obama.

University of Phoenix recognizes the significance of these parks and monuments, and partnered with the National Park Foundation to award $220,000 in grants to high school teachers to take part in national park-based conservation programs. The Park Stewards program is helping teachers create earth-friendly curriculum to engage their students in project-based learning back in the classroom all year long.

In celebration of this exciting partnership, here are a few cool things that make our national parks worth bragging about — and protecting and preserving for future generations to marvel over:

Explore our national parks

Getting to know our national parks

398: Number of areas in the National Park System, 58 of which are national parks

18,000: Miles of water and land trails that cover the park areas

84 million: Acres of land preserved in national park areas


  • 11 months - age of the newest park, Patterson Great Falls, NJ, created in November 2011
  • 140 years - age of the oldest park, Yellowstone National Park, WY, created in 1872


  • .02 acre - size of the smallest park area, Thaddeus Kosciuszko National Memorial, PA
  • 13.2 million acres - size of the biggest park, Wrangell-St. Elias National Park, AK


  • 282 feet below sea level - depth of the lowest point in the U.S., located in Death Valley National Park, CA
  • 1,943 feet - depth of the deepest lake in the U.S., Crater Lake National Park, OR
  • 2,425 feet - height of the highest waterfall in North America, Yosemite Falls in Yosemite National Park, CA
  • 20,320 feet - height of the highest point in North America, located on Mount McKinley in Denali National Park, AK

390 miles: Length of the longest cave system in the world, located in Mammoth Cave National Park, KY

281,000,000: Number of people visiting national park areas annually

221,000: Number of annual volunteers working in national park areas

15,000: Number of Twitter® followers of the park with the most followers, Yosemite National Park, CA

17: Number of "fee-free days" at the 398 park areas in 2012

National parks protect our endangered species:

  • 3,900 bison at Yellowstone National Park, WY
  • 350 grizzly bears at Denali National Park, AK
  • 400,000 Mexican free-tailed bats at Carlsbad Caverns National Park, NM

The 5 park areas with the most numbers of endangered species:

  • 45 - Natchez Trace Parkway, MS
  • 42 - Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, HI
  • 36 - Golden Gate National Recreation Area, CA
  • 36 - Haleakala National Park, HI
  • 28 - Channel Islands National Park, CA

On location - these national park areas were featured in popular films:

  • Muir Woods National Monument, CA - Rise of the Planet of the Apes
  • Grand Teton National Park, WY - Brokeback Mountain
  • Glacier National Park, MT - The Shining
  • Acadia National Park, ME - Shutter Island
  • Arches National Park, UT - Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
  • Yosemite National Park, CA - Star Trek V: The Final Frontier