While some students are fortunate to have all the funds they need for their education or to have people who are willing to support them, other students are not that lucky. It is because of students in the latter category that well-meaning individuals, institutions, and governmental and non-governmental organizations alike have created several financial aid packages in form of scholarships, grants, work-study programs, and loans amongst many others.
Understandably, every student who needs financial aid desires a scholarship or grant or any other non-refundable aid package as opposed to loans as no one wants to be piling up debts even before they earn their first pay.
It is for this reason that this article is geared towards enlightening you about an available scholarship package. However, the Mike Rowe Scholarship is strictly for students who wish to be trained for any skill but do not have the financial capacity to fund their training program. So, if it so happens that you are one of such students, then keep reading to find out more about this scholarship program.
What is the Mike Rowe Scholarship?
As was earlier stated, the Mike Rowe Scholarship is a financial aid package that is strictly for students who are either currently pursuing, or who aspire to pursue a vocation or trade-related program. Not everyone is cut out for a white-collar job. Matter of fact, everyone shouldn’t work a white-collar job. Because, if everyone sat in an office chair behind a desk and a computer all day long, who then will work the other jobs?
Unlike white-collar jobs that mostly require mental work, vocational jobs or careers require employees to apply hands-on trade school experience in professional settings. For this reason, if you have chosen a career path invocation, you are right on track.
Because vocational careers require special training, students do not attend regular colleges as there are special vocational training centers designed specially to train and equip vocational students.
The Mike Rowe Scholarship was started by Michael Gregory Rowe, an American television host, and narrator. He is known for his television series “Dirty Jobs,” and “Somebody’s Gotta Do It.”
Through his “Dirty Jobs” series, Rowe traveled to all the states in the United States and worked with plumbers, electricians, steamfitters, pipefitters, and tons of other skilled workers. Due to his findings, Rowe surmised that while there was a stratospheric rise in college tuition, on the one hand, there was the gradual disappearance of vocational education on the other hand. In his words, “America is lending money it doesn’t have to kids who can’t pay it back to train them for jobs that no longer exist. That’s nuts.” He postulated that to remedy the situation, “we have to reconnect the average American with the value of a skilled workforce.” It is for this reason that he founded the mikeroweWORKS foundation in 2008. The scholarship is a one-off tuition payment for selected students.
Mike Rowe Scholarship Requirements
As much as the conveners of this scheme are committed to helping as many students as they can, there is a need to put in place eligibility criteria that will ensure that only those who qualify for this scholarship get awarded. To that effect, to qualify to be awarded the Mike Rowe Scholarship, you must:
- Be a citizen of the United States. This is non-negotiable as the scholarship is for students from the United States “ONLY.”
- Be a high school senior, graduate, or GED equivalent who have enrolled or is willing to enroll in an accredited two-year college, technical school, vocational, or other approved technical institute of the United States
- Have never at any point in time been a beneficiary of the Mike Rowe Scholarship Foundation Educational Scholarships.
Mike Rowe Scholarship—Documents Required
If you fulfill the above-mentioned requirements, then there’s nothing stopping you from applying. To smoothen your application process, we have made a list of the documents you will be needing during your application process. They include:
- Completed School Cost Form
- A copy of page one from the most recently filed IRS Form 1040
- Completed S.W.E.A.T Pledge Short Answer Questions
- Transcript of grades including high school, vo-tech, or college transcript of grades from each school attended. It is pertinent to state that Grade reports are not accepted.
- Two completed Reference Questionnaires
- Signed S.W.E.A.T Pledge
What is the S.W.E.A.T Pledge?
Seeing that the S.W.E.A.T Pledge is a requirement for the scholarship, there is a need that intending applicants to know all there is about it before proceeding to start their application process. The S.W.E.A.T Pledge is an acronym for “Skill and Work Ethics Aren’t Taboo.” It is a 12-point statement of belief that espouses Rowe’s personal feeling towards work. According to Rowe, it is a collection of lessons learned from the Dirty Jobs that he believes every worker will benefit from embracing, irrespective of their job or skill set. The S.W.E.A.T Pledge has been met with a different reception. While some people feel the pledge is a conservative manifesto and weigh heavily in favor of employers who are looking for more ways to abuse their employees, others pay to have Rowe sign the pledge and mail it to them. Consequently, thousands of the pledges now hang in schools, factory floors, construction sites, and cubicles across the United States.
People’s reservations notwithstanding, Rowe who insists the pledge has no political undertone has made signing the pledge part of the requirements for being awarded the scholarship. According to him, he has no interest in paying for the training of people who don’t his opinion about the nature of work ethic, a positive attitude, delayed gratification, and personal responsibility.
We therefore strongly advise that before you proceed to apply for this scholarship, you should endeavor to know all there is to the S.W.E.A.T Pledge. A search on the internet will turn up tons of articles on it including videos where Rowe explains each of the 12 pledges and the events that orchestrated it.
Mike Rowe Scholarship—Application Procedure
If after intense research on the S.W.E.A.T Pledge you still wish to apply, the first thing you must do is apply to an approved program after which you can proceed to sign the swipe oath. The next step is to answer 3 questions in writing and also to write an essay about yourself. The essay and answers you have written will require the reference of at least two teachers. After that, you will proceed to make a short video of between 45-60 seconds with no trademark, service mark, or music of any kind. You will proceed to upload your video on YouTube. You will copy and submit the link to the video. A copy of your tuition fee will be displayed, and you are also required to upload a copy of your school or college showing your academic performance on your application. The last step of the application is showing proof of your financial standing. Do bear in mind that the video you will upload can be used for publicity by Mike Rowe Work Foundation and its scholarship sponsors.
We hope you found this piece worth the time you spent reading it.