When I was growing up we had educational TV shows like Sesame Street, Reading Rainbow, and Mr. Rogers. These shows were great and I learned a great deal from these shows. However, I wish that there was a show like Mike Rowe's Dirty Jobs available to me growing up. I think that this show would have helped myself along with many of my peers out with choosing professions or careers to go into.
In my opinion one of the biggest issues in the US school system is that students are not exposed to all of different career paths that are out there. We are simply told that we should get an education so that we can get a good job. We are told that if we do not get a college degree, then we will not be able to get a good job. But what is a good job?
If you go by what we were conditioned to believe then a good job would be considered to be only the following:
Neverthless, it is an indisputable fact that the world would not be able to function if you only had doctors, lawyers, nurses, and businessman. The reality of life is everyone is interdependent on each other. Just like the world needs doctors and lawyers the world needs electricians and plumbers. Just like the world needs bankers and nurses, the world needs auto mechanics and truck drivers. Believe it or not, there are some electricians, plumbers, and auto mechanics who make just as much money as lawyers and doctors.
However, the types of trades and professions are not promoted like they should to kids in school. Granted these professions may not be glamourous but they are needed and a lot of them pay well. Furthermore, in most cases, you do need a 4-year college degree to practice these professions.
US politicians are always talking about how unemployment is so high, but is that because there are no jobs or is that because we do not have qualified people to fill the job that are available? For that matter, maybe unemployment is high because people only want to work at the so-called good jobs.
This is where the TV show Dirty Jobs come in. The show does a great job highlighting trades and professions that are needed by society yet not many people desire to work in these trades or, even worse, people just do not know about them. The show also does a good job of changing the perception of how people look at different professions or trades. It lets people understand that good jobs come in all forms. Good jobs can be in a factory, on top of a roof, inside of a mine, or on a construction site. Good jobs can be dangerous and dirty.
Here are some of the professions and trades that I was exposed to in some of the Dirty Jobs TV Episodes:
Hot Tar Roofer
When an older building starts experiencing water leaks, then they call these guys to do maintanance on the roof or replace it all together.
If you want to literally take your house with you to another part of the city, then these are the guys to call. These guys do not move furniture they move your house.
Chimney sweepers are needed to remove the soot, blockages and creosote which can cause chimney fires. It is recommended that homeowners have there chimneys inspected and sweeped once a year.
Wooden Tank Builder
Wooden water tanks are needed in New York City because most of the buildings are so tall that they cannot provide enough water pressure. In addition to the tanks needing to be built they also need to maintained.
A sewage inspector is needed to check city sewages systems for structural defects among other things. If there is any type of structural damage within a sewer system the actual street above can collapse.
Disaster Clean-up Worker
If your house becomes flooded these are the guys you would call. These guys are able to salvage certain items and identify mold damage. In addition to that, they would be able to safely remove mold from your home.
If you are trying to remodel your home, then you could call a demolition company. The benefit in using a demolition company is that they will gut the place and then they will clean up the mess.
Other jobs that were featured in the series included an elevator cleaner, storm drain cleaner, cheese maker, candy maker, sausage maker, wine barrel maker, and several other professions and trades that many people do not think about.
If it wasn't for this show I would have never been exposed to some of these different career paths. Imagine the effect on school kids being exposed to these different professions. That is why a show like this is needed.
Keep in mind, I realize that, despite kids viewing Dirty Jobs, they may still aspire to be a doctor, lawyer, or business executive. It is nothing wrong with that. But it is wrong not to present kids with all of the career options available to them.
Lastly, if Dirty Jobs does not do anything else, it introduces kids to the concept of interdependence. It shows them that all jobs are important and help the world move forward.