Crazy jobs for the students

An Elvis impersonator, an Oompa-Loompa and Gangnam Style dancers were among 50,784 positions listed by Student Job Search (SJS) this year - but they were far from the strangest listings.

Rotorua students coming home for the holidays have 12 per cent fewer employment opportunities than they did last year, new figures reveal.

SJS recorded the drop in job listings in the September to December quarter - down to 152 from 172 last year.

Chief executive Paul Kennedy said some of the quirkier jobs advertised during the service's 30-year history had included flash mobsters, fake paparazzi, goat milkers and nudist camp cleaners. "You name it, we get it."

And yes, the nudist camp cleaners were required to be naked too.

Applicants had even been required to do "red carpet work" at Wellington Airport for VIP business clients.

"We've had 30-odd students in there dressed as paparazzi with cameras and everything else.

"They've rolled out a red carpet just to make a big hoo-ha for these customers coming in."

However, not all job offers were accepted. The service drew the line when student welfare could be put at risk. Cigarette testers and student-strippers for hen's and stag nights were among jobs which had been turned down.

"We're not putting students into a private residence to do that sort of work."

There are currently just nine listings for Rotorua students coming home for the holidays, including a relief milker, electrical apprentice and insurance sales trainee.

The commission-only role was aimed at students with aspirations for a long-term career as insurance/financial advisers.

"You probably won't earn much in your first weeks," the classified ad warns, however "after this new employees average around $60,000 for their first year, and upwards of $80,000 after this".

The number of national job listings has risen dramatically in the past year, Mr Kennedy said.

About 195,000 students were registered to the job-matching database and 20,000 accessed the website weekly.

"Students are popular with employers because they bring vibrancy and aren't afraid to roll their sleeves up and get stuck in.

"Employers know they're getting someone who's keen, flexible and good value for money."

SJS is a registered charity owned by student associations and receives most of its funding through the Ministry of Social Development.

Mr Kennedy said students earned on average $15 an hour, although there were regional variations.

"We have many ICT roles paying $30-plus an hour, accountancy roles paying $20 per hour and simple labouring roles paying $13.75 per hour."

New Zealand's minimum wage is $13.50 an hour.

Employers were increasingly looking for workers with key skills and experience and students were more focused on jobs which could get them work experience - in order to gain full-time employment once they graduated, Mr Kennedy said.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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