“Do you wish to rise? Begin by descending. You plan a tower that will pierce the clouds? Lay first the foundation of humility.” — Saint Augustine

Many of us have seen the wildly popular and highly rated Dirty Jobs with Mike Rowe, which ran for no fewer than eight seasons on the Discovery Channel. Specializing in dangerous and difficult jobs, apprenticing himself to everyone from organic sheep farmers to junk removal specialists, half-relishing, half-dreading the attendant grime and slime, and entertaining us with frequent zingers and slapstick, Rowe used his platform to extol the all-too-rare-these-days virtues of hard, real, honest work – much of it manual, all of it necessary to run the world in which we live.

No doubt thanks in part to Rowe, while almost every sector of higher education is seeing fewer students registering for classes in the last few years, many vocational programs are filled with young people choosing trade school over a traditional four-year degree, while more college graduates are going back to school to learn skilled trades

It's often a hard, dirty job to build and maintain the bones of a country, but without the men and women creating, running, renovating, and upgrading those bones, we would have no base in which to root our society and ...

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