Mike Rowe, whose TV show 'Dirty Jobs' highlighted the many people employed in dirty, dangerous or smelly jobs, announced his new mikeroweWORKSScholarships on the October 10 evening edition of the Glen Beck Show. Citing the nearly one trillion dollars of outstanding student loan debt in America, Mr. Rowe stated that an expensive college education does not benefit all people and that his goal is to help train students for jobs as skilled tradespeople, especially since many of these jobs presently go unfilled because of an insufficiently prepared workforce. While he is not against a college education, he is against debt, and too often a college student graduates deeply in debt and unable to find a job in their chosen field. A recent report stated that approximately 284,000 college graduates held minimum wage jobs in 2012. It is not only possible, but necessary to work both smart and hard, Mr. Rowe said, referring to a poster hanging in his high school which showed a "working smart" college graduate with a degree in hand as opposed to a "working hard" manual laborer. He has hated that poster since he first saw it in 1977, and has since revised that poster to reflect his personal philosophy.
Eligibility for each $15,000 scholarship will not based upon academic achievements or financial need, but rather upon a student's work ethic. To apply, a student will take the S.W.E.A.T. (Skills and Work Ethic Aren't Taboo) Pledge and send in a video in which they present why they are a good investment. The pledge is made up of twelve statements that renounce debt, whining and shirking and promise hard, passionate work, personal responsibility, and making the most of opportunities. There are currently over $800,000 in the scholarship fund. At the end of the show, Glen Beck presented Mr. Rowe with a $20,000 check from his charity, Mercury One.
For more information about the mikeroweWORKS scholarships, visit his website, Profoundly Disconnected.