Delightful, Daunting and Dependable Jobs

D is for… Dalai Lama!

The Dalai Lama is the political and spiritual leader of Tibet. Here is a picture of the reigning 14th Dalai Lama:

Dalai Lama (photo credit: Christopher Michel)

Born Lhamo Thondup on 6 July 1935, His Holiness the Dalai Lama was publicly recognized as the successor to the 13th Dalai Lama in 1939, and assumed full temporal (political) duties in 1950 at the age of 15.

The Dalai Lama currently lives in exile in India, due to Tibet’s political struggles with China. Although he stepped down as the political leader of Tibet in 2011, he continues to travel the world, teaching and speaking on a wide variety of subjects, including Buddhism, the welfare of Tibetans, economics, environmentalism, nonviolence, science, and women’s rights, among many other topics.

The most interesting aspect of the Dalai Lama’s job is its basis in reincarnation. You see, the current Dalai Lama is always found, rather than chosen or appointed, as with most political leaders. As this article in The Guardian explains, the Dalai Lama is said to possess the power to choose which body he will reborn into. Thus the job of his followers is to discover his new form through successive generations.

As John Oliver explains in this video, it’s a bit like an eternal game of Hide and Seek!

Another important part of the Dalai Lama’s job, as he says in this interview, is that he “practice[s] taking others’ anger, suspicion and distrust and give[s] them patience, tolerance and compassion.” What a wonderful thing, to be able to turn negativity into positivity, and redirect this flow of energy and emotion. Pretty cool, no?

The Dalai Lama is also on Twitter, sharing messages of peace, hope and inspiration @DalaiLama.

There Can Be Only One

Since there can be only one Dalai Lama (and this particular Dalai Lama suggests that he may, in fact, be the last in this line of spiritual leaders), here are some interesting alternatives for those with aspirations of spiritual leadership:


  • Bodhisattva
  • Lama – not to be confused with the Dalai Lama (a title), this refers to Tibetan Buddhist teachers
  • Sensei


  • Chaplain
  • Clergy (bishop, cardinal, priest, pastor, senior pastor, assistant pastor, minister, rector, associate rector, elder, director, deacon, youth pastor, youth minister, choir and music director)
  • Mission or Ministry Leader
  • Monk
  • Nun
  • Preacher


  • Guru
  • Swami
  • Yogi


  • Imam


  • Cantor
  • Rabbi

Other Religions

  • Daoshi
  • Fetish Priest
  • Itako
  • Kannushi
  • Medicine Man/Woman
  • Priestess
  • Shaman

Further Reading

Related Films

Other Delightful Jobs That Start With D

  • Dancer
  • Dentist
  • Diplomat
  • Doctor

Want to learn about even more cool jobs?

Pre-order the book, World’s Coolest Jobs, a collection of all the coolest jobs you never knew existed. On sale September 1, 2017.

C is for Clandestine Service

C is for Clandestine Service

Hyasnaa & Lydia von Sturmpanzer V2 (photo credit: saigneurdeguerre)

Ever wanted to become a professional spy? Then look no further than the CIA’s Clandestine Service!

Now known as the Directorate of Operations, the Central Intelligence Agency formerly referred to this part Agency as the Clandestine Service, since it involves the collection of human intelligence and conducting Covert Action as directed by the President.

In short: this is where U.S. spies are trained to carry out their missions.

Important note: the CIA obtains information on foreign lands and people, whereas the FBI keeps tabs on U.S. citizens. There are also two other U.S. agencies that employ intelligence officers: the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and the National Security Agency (NSA).

Although being a spy may sound cool, particularly if you’ve read a lot of thrillers or enjoy the James Bond movies, most intelligence work is actually more about – surprise! – using your brain to defeat the enemy. As this list of 10 myths about working for the CIA points out, intelligence officers don’t need to be superhuman, karate experts, or wear tuxedos to upscale casinos.

Indeed, given that much modern-day crime happens online, some Clandestine Service members spend a lot of time with computers, just like hackers.

“Data Security” (photo credit: Visual Content)

Unfortunately, a lot of the gadgetry spies use in movies is just Hollywood flash. Then again, the CIA admits “our scientists and engineers do get to work on technology so advanced, it’s classified.”

If you like learning new things (including foreign languages), never being bored on the job, and getting to work in the field, then perhaps a career in the Clandestine Service is the cool job for you!

Further Reading

Related Films (and a Song)

Other Cool Jobs That Start With C

  • Caddie
  • Camera Operator
  • Camouflage Specialist
  • Candy Maker/Chocolatier
  • Cantor
  • Carpenter
  • Cartoonist
  • CEO
  • Chef
  • Chemist
  • Choreographer
  • CIA Analyst
  • Coach
  • Crystallographer

Want to learn about even more cool jobs?

Pre-order the book, World’s Coolest Jobs, a collection of all the coolest jobs you never knew existed. On sale September 1, 2017.

B is for Beekeeper

B is for… Beekeeper!

Beekeepers harvesting honey in Zanzibar (photo credit: barefootcollege)

Did you know that beekeeping can be either a job or a hobby? While many people keep bees just for fun, there are also professional beekeepers who work with commercial organizations to provide honey to you and me.

Hilary Kearney is one of these full-time beekeepers, and the owner of Girl Next Door Honey, which takes an unusual approach to making honey locally. As she explains on her website:

“Girl Next Door Honey is more than just raw and local, it’s made in backyard hives—maybe even your neighbor’s yard! That’s the concept behind Girl Next Door Honey. We integrate bees into the local ecosystem through a network of backyard hives instead of lumping them together on some distant apiary. The bees live as they naturally would and their benefits reach more people.”

Basically, if you’re interested in becoming a beekeeper in San Diego, you should talk to Hilary! She offers monthly beekeeping classes, to get locals interested in the hobby, and helps people set up hives in their own backyards. She can also come and rid your backyard of invasive bees, if necessary, and will match any pest removal’s quote in order to re-home your bees rather than killing them.

How cool is that?

If you’ve ever wondered how to learn more about bees and their important work of pollination, and you live in San Diego, you can contact Hilary or join the San Diego Beekeeping Society, which also has a Meetup group with 1,633 members (as of April 3, 2017).

For those not living in San Diego, check out some of my Further Reading articles below to learn more about the exciting world of bees and beekeeping!

Further Reading

Related Films, Featuring Bees & Beekeepers

Other Bodacious Jobs That Start With B

  • Bailiff
  • Balloon Operator
  • Baker
  • Banker
  • Barber
  • Bibliographer
  • Bicycle Repair Person
  • Binder
  • Biochemist
  • Biographer
  • Biologist
  • Blacksmith
  • Bodyguard
  • Bondsman
  • Bonsai Cultivator
  • Bookbinder
  • Bookmobile Driver
  • Botanist
  • Boxer
  • Braille Bookmaker
  • Broadcast Journalist
  • Butcher

Want to learn about even more cool jobs?

Pre-order the book, World’s Coolest Jobs, a collection of all the coolest jobs you never knew existed. On sale September 1, 2017.

A is for Astronaut

A is for… Astronaut!

Mae Jemison (photo credit: NASA on The Commons)

This is Dr. Mae C. Jemison, the first woman of color in space. Described by NASA as “the first African-American astronaut,” she first entered space in 1992 aboard the space shuttle Endeavour as a mission specialist. She originally completed her astronaut training in 1988, after being chosen for the space program in 1987.

She left the agency in 1993 to accept a teaching fellowship at Dartmouth, and later went on to found both the Jemison Group and 100 Year Starship, an organization that seeks to enable the capability for interstellar human space flight by 2112.

You can follow her on Twitter @maejemison.

Being an astronaut requires a lot of hard work and studying, as well as physical stamina and training. Indeed, NASA’s Astronaut Requirements include:

  • A bachelor’s degree in engineering, a biological science, physical science, or mathematics;
  • At least 1,000 hours pilot-in-command time in jet aircraft; and
  • The ability to pass the space physical – which includes the additional requirements of 20/100 or better uncorrected vision, blood pressure 140/90, and a height between 62 and 75 inches (5’1″ to 6’9″).

But, let’s face it… it’s got to be pretty cool to be able to do this at work:

Sheikh Muszaphar Shukor (photo credit: NASA on The Commons)

Want to become an astronaut? Read more about the Astronaut Selection Program, and the other International Space Agencies around the world (not to mention SpaceX, which just made history by launching and landing a used rocket on March 30!), along with these brief articles.

Further Reading

Related Films & Videos

Other Awesome Jobs That Start With A

  • Actor
  • Air Traffic Controller
  • Archeologist
  • Architect
  • Artist
  • Athlete
  • Author
  • Aviator

Want to learn about even more cool jobs?

Pre-order the book, World’s Coolest Jobs, a collection of all the coolest jobs you never knew existed. On sale September 1, 2017.

A to Z Challenge – Theme Reveal: Explore some of the World’s Coolest Jobs

Hi! My name is Laura, and I write books for kids. YA books, to be more specific. Nonfiction books about cool jobs, to be exact.

So far I’ve written two books about cool jobs for ReferencePoint Press, a San Diego educational publisher. My first book, Careers in Gaming, debuted in January of this year, and my second book, Careers in Digital Media, is coming this fall. I’m currently working on a third book, called Careers If You Like Music, for the same publisher.

Since I started writing about all of these interesting jobs people have in the video game industry, the world of digital media, and the ever-changing music industry, I asked myself: what do all of these jobs have in common?

The answer is simple: they’re all super cool!

Now, I know you are probably thinking, “But, Laura, how can work be cool?” And that’s a good question!

Here’s what I think: if you find a job you really love, it will never feel like work. There’s even a saying that has been attributed to everyone from Confucius to Mark Twain to Marc Anthony:

“If you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.”

So what does that mean?

It means you need to find one of the World’s Coolest Jobs, so you’ll be able to wake up every day excited to go to work!

And how do you do that?

Just follow along as I take you on a quick tour of 26 awesome jobs, from A to Z, during the month of April. I’ll be posting about my first Cool Job – which starts with the letter A – on April 1st.

Don’t forget to subscribe to my blog so you won’t miss a single post!

Just type in your email address in that space to the right. >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

See you on April 1st!


P.S. If you’d like to play along on the A to Z Challenge at your own blog, check out the challenge’s website to find out more!