Many companies who rely on skilled trades workers have decried the lack of qualified people.[i] Organizations and companies are addressing the problem by funding vocational training. The Generation Next Scholarship Campaign is one program designed to create opportunities to enter the skilled trades with the help of trade school scholarships.
What Is the Generation Next Scholarship Campaign?
In 2016, This Old House Ventures started the Generation Next Scholarship Campaign. The campaign raises money for scholarships for students seeking HVAC training and other types of vocational education. Much of the funding comes from trade associations and companies.
All of the money raised goes to the Mike Rowe Works Foundation. Actor and skilled trades spokesman Mike Rowe created the organization to help solve America’s skilled labor shortage. Older skilled trades workers are set to retire and employers have been unable to find enough trained and qualified people to replace them when they do. Funding scholarships for trade schools is one solution.[ii]
The Mike Rowe Scholarship
One scholarship available is the Mike Rowe 2017 Work Ethic Scholarship. The deadline is May 19, 2017, but you have some time to follow these steps, it may worth it.
Steps to Apply:
- Step 1: Sign the ‘Skill & Work Ethic Aren’t Taboo’ (S.W.E.A.T.) Pledge. This is a promise to be grateful, honest, and work hard, as well as strive toward other honorable qualities.
- Step 2: Provide at least two references from current or former employers, teachers, or supervisors.
- Step 3: Make a case for yourself in writing. Tell the foundation why you want to enter the skilled trades and what you’ve done to deserve the award over other applicants. Volunteer work or mentorships are good accomplishments to mention.
- Step 4: If you can get a hold of your school attendance records, submit them.
- Step 5: Send a video of yourself persuading the scholarship awarders why you should win the free money. While this step isn’t required, it could help set you apart from the other applicants.
Funding Helps Fill the Skills Gap
Efforts like the Next Generation Scholarship Campaign and the Mike Rowe Works Foundation help move the nation closer to filling the skills gap. Fortunately, these are not the only organizations working toward this goal. In fact, there are a many vocational scholarships out there for men and women of all ages.