Dirty Jobs star Mike Rowe has a piece of advice: become a skilled tradesperson. He says that there are so many misconceptions about what someone in the trade is really like. “They’re actually pretty fit, and pretty smart…”
The issue here is a much larger one, though. In this day and age, parents and educators—and society as a whole—is pushing a college education as the primary path that every student should take, regardless of his or her skill set. This “skills gap” is an ever increasing threat for companies and businesses that rely on a labor force whose numbers are dwindling.
One study showed that only a mere 9% of students are pursuing the skilled labor trade. With student loan debt at an all-time high, for some it might not make sense for them to pursue a traditional college education.
That’s where Dirty Jobs TV star Mike Rowe steps in. In 2008 he started mikeroweWORKS, a non-profit that helps connect students with a keen interest in the skilled trade with scholarships and job opportunities. The training and education required for skilled trades is significantly less than a typical college education; apprenticeships and trade schools are relatively inexpensive resources that are the staples in this industry. Plus, trade jobs like plumbers and electricians will always be in demand.
You can find more info about the mikeroweWORKS non-profit here: https://www.mikeroweworks.org/scholarship/