It pays less than most starting teachers' salaries and has tougher odds than a position at Google, but don't let that deter you from applying for this best of all the jobs: the Giant Panda Protection and Research Center in China's Sichuan province has launched a worldwide search for panda cub caretakers.
Chinadaily USA reports that the job lasts for a year and pays 200,000 yuan, equivalent to about $32,500, as well as an SUV for transport and meals and accommodations. Current panda nannies, mostly volunteers, come from Europe, the U.S., and Japan--but as part of a program designed to increase global awareness of the needs of panda conservation, the organizers have decided to create a paid position. It's unclear how many slots are available, but the campaign also includes the recruitment of eight panda observers for a three-day stint.
According to an organizer who spoke with Chinadaily USA, "you need perseverance for this job. We expect that the applicants will be mainly white-collar workers from big cities. They are used to eating whatever they want, but inside the giant panda base, the choices will not be plentiful." The recruiters also cite a need for good writing skills (presumably to share experiences in a way that will convey a meaningful message), as well as an ability to take pictures. The search runs from now through July 15, and applications are being accepted at fun.sohu.com, although good luck navigating it. Reportedly, more than 100,000 applications have already been received.
In addition to the above requirements, candidates should be at least 22 years old and have "some basic knowledge of pandas." They're black and white and eat bamboo, pick me!
[Image: Flickr user Chi King]