The Tourism Board of Queensland in Australia is looking for a "Caretaker of the Islands of the Great Barrier Reef." The job pays $100,000 U.S. for 6 months of whale watching, pool cleaning—and blogging. I'm tempted to apply myself ... This CNN video gives the lowdown.
MAN ON THE STREET: You get a three-bedroom luxury apartment with a swimming pool and 73,000 pounds a year.
MAN ON THE STREET: That can't be right. There’s gotta be a catch somewhere.
WOMAN ON THE STREET: Sounds like a good job. I should go bikini hunting straight away.
SHUBERT: Tourism Queensland insists there's no catch, just, quote, "the best job in the world." Others might call it a publicity stunt for Australian tourism, but one that just might work.
JANE NICHOLSON, REGIONAL MANAGER, TOURISM QUEENSLAND: Word of mouth is really important now. You need to hear from fellow travellers what a destination is really like. So, what better way than to create a job to allow someone to do that? They need to be over 18; they have to be able to swim. And apart from that, it's open to anybody.
SHUBERT: The land down under has been hit hard by the credit crunch. Tourism Research Australia says tourist numbers could fall by 4% this year, especially from mainstay markets like the UK. So, will the "best job in the world" spark new interest? Well so far, so good. On opening day, the Web site has been flooded with about 33 hits per second. All applicants have to do is submit a 60-second video to this Web site, islandreefjob.com, explaining why they are the perfect candidate to be island caretaker. It's very tempting.
SHUBERT: Eleven lucky finalists will be flown to Australia for a final round of interviews before an island caretaker is chosen. Twenty-six-year-old Louise Cryan saw it in the paper on Monday morning and immediately called up, one of the first to apply.
LOUISE CRYAN, APPLICANT: It's actually a real job, so that's amazing. I just thought, what a great place to go and spend 6 months. Looked out of the window; it's such a grey and miserable day, so who wouldn't want to go?
SHUBERT: So, rainy London versus sunny Australia in the middle of a credit crunch? What would you choose?
MAN ON THE STREET: For me, with everything that's going on in my life, it couldn't come at a better time.
SHUBERT: Better get your applications in. The deadline for the best job in the world is February 22nd. Atika Shubert, CNN, London.
When I read about this story in the press, I thought it would make a great subject for a lesson. That was a couple of weeks ago, and I've now had time to put together some materials. In this Word file you will find the video transcript, an English-French glossary, a video worksheet, a website scavenger hunt and a job interview activity.
You can use this subject in many different ways. Here are a few suggestions:
• YouTube video 1 (Great Barrier Reef showcase)