|Calif. Man Gets 'Best Job in the World'|
|Susanna Kim||Jun 21, 2013, 6:01 AM|
(Image credit: Andrew Smith/Tourism Australia)
An American from Costa Mesa, Calif., won what Australia's tourism group calls "chief funster" and one of the six "best jobs in the world."
Californian Andrew Smith, 25, won the top job of chief funster, to be based in the state of New South Wales.
Back in March, Tourism Australia announced the launch of the "Best Jobs in the World" contest, in which six winners get six-month jobs with snazzy titles, like wildlife caretaker, outback adventurer, park ranger, lifestyle photographer and taste master.
It pays to be in Australian tourism. Each person is awarded $100,000 Australian ($101,000 USD) including living costs for just six months.
The contest promotes Australian travel and has been echoed by other companies, including a resort company that hosted a contest earlier this year for a global water slide tester.
The British university student who won the water slide testing job is receiving $30,904 for his six-month contract; his overseas travel expenses will be covered and he'll receive a seven-night stay for two at a First Choice All Inclusive resort.
Chief Funster Smith's duties will include promoting and reviewing festivals and events, and tweeting.
Smith, who will be based in Sydney, studied finance in college before moving to South Korea and discovered "his great love for exploring the world," his biography states.
But it hasn't always been fun and games for Smith, who says losing his uncle, grandfather, grandmother, cousin and sister within a five-year period encouraged him "to never a miss a moment life has to offer."
The winners were selected from 620,000 applications. Eighteen finalists spent a week undergoing challenges relevant to their chosen job. The other winners hail from Canada, Ireland, France, Brazil and England.
A seventh job not originally listed as one of the "best jobs in the world", a surprise addition, was awarded by Virgin Australia to Cameron Ernst, from Dallas. His passion of singing and songwriting may or may not come in handy for his next gig. The University of Southern California graduate will fly around the country as the airline's new High Flyer, "championing Australia's best customer service experiences."