mrWF Mailbag with letter mailbag copy


We see what you’re writing out there and we get email, boy do we get email! In fact we see such great stuff we’ve decided to share it with you. Sometimes what we find is insightful, inspirational, and even funny – the main thing though it’s written by you.

Post your comments on  Mike’s Facebook Page or send us an email at with “mrWF Mailbag” in the subject line.

sm email logoSent by Vince P. • I just finished watching your video from when you were at AP Hill talking to the Boy Scouts at their Centennial. My son was there having eggs and sausage with you but neglected to tell me you were a guest speaker. My son choose to be one of the many not to earn his Eagle. I was very angry and disappointed by his decision. What you said really hit home. When he left for college we had words about his laziness in Scouting and high school. I told him that I spent most of his college fund on my retirement and he would have to earn his own way. After listening to you I realized that it was up to him, not me to earn his Eagle. Your words took away my anger and frustration. I realized also that he did get a lot from Scouting even w/o earning an Eagle. My son is doing well in college. Scouting gave him the skills to be on his own. He is earning money and has been awarded 3 scholarships. Next year he will have financial aid and hopefully earn his Bachelor’s Degree with no student debt.
I support your cause and appreciate what you are doing to promote the vocational skills. Thanks again and keep up the good work.
sm email logoSent by Shirlene J. • When Evan was 13, he shared his goals for his future with his dad & me. He told us when he graduated high school, he was going to the Universal Technical Institute to become a Diesel Technician. He informed us that one of the best diesel programs was at the UTI campus in Exton, PA.
It was evident when Evan was very young that he was logical and mechanically inclined. However when he started school, it didn’t take long to see he had difficulty with reading comprehension. Eventually, he was diagnosed with dyslexia. Evan received a lot of ridicule & harassment that would have broken the spirit of most kids, but it seemed to make him even more determined. He graduated high school May 2014, and started UTI in August, 2014.
Evan heard about the Mike Rowe Works Scholarship, but there were issues with PA regulations & he was told PA students were therefor not eligible. At the last minute though, those restrictions were lifted. Evan applied for your Work Ethic Scholarships, and received one at the last minute.
At UTI, Evan completed the diesel program, and then entered the Cummins program. Students in this program have to maintain a high GPA, have excellent attendance, interview & test to get in. On September 25, 2015, Evan graduated with a 3.84 GPA, Perfect Attendance, and “Student of the Course” award. But here’s the best part of his story.
Evan had applied to 3 companies in Savannah, GA, all of whom competed for his attention with multiple offers. It was a difficult choice, but what an incredible dilemma for a 20 year old to have. He made his decision, moved to Savannah, and started work at Cummins Power South, a mere three weeks after graduation. He was offered an incredible salary, benefits, vacation & incentives. He is living his dream & is still so humble.
Thank you Mike, for being an advocate for those who want to work hard & don’t mind getting a little dirty. Evan is a great testimonial & I am very proud of him. If you find yourself in Savannah, please look him up. He would love to tell you “Thank you” face to face & to shake your hand.
FB logoHey mike. I just wanted to say. After growing up watching Dirty Jobs and Deadliest Catch I learned that hard working people make the world turn round. After high school I join the U.S army and did my deployment to Iraq. After leaving the army I didn’t know what to do with my life. I tried regular college for three years only to realize that I wouldn’t be happy sitting at a desk for the rest of my life. So I left the state college and am now going to welding school. One of the best decisions I’ve made in my life so far aside from getting married to my wonderful wife. While I’m still in welding school currently, I got a job as a welder for a large waste company. Thinking back to one of your first episodes of Dirty Jobs where you take trash out in NYC. Some people have to do the dirty jobs to make the rest live comfortably.
So I thank you for being such a big influence in my life. Posted by Jonathan Do
sm email logoSent by Michael M. • Last week I came home from a job interview with dirty hands, that had to be a good sign I thought. It really was kind of comical as I stood there on a factory floor with a blue dress shirt and khakis building some odds and ends to test my skills at reading directions and using a wrench. I had no idea that this interview would lead to this. I had no idea that I would ever get the point in my life when I would even attempt to do this.
I have spent the past 20 plus years in retail and food service. I have managed stores and sold everything from candy bars to vacuums to cars and everything you could imagine in between. I even sold wood heat stoves for a time. But enough of my resume. The point was that I have never worked in any kind of manufacturing or blue collar work. Never considered it at all.
Several years ago I saw this little show on TV called Dirty Jobs, don’t know if you know that one or not, but the host was a real great guy who truly enjoyed showing America the kind of jobs that people do every day and through that show I learned a ton of respect for the people that do jobs that I would never do. I have been an avid fan of you and what you stand for. So much that in my search for employment I came across a great local company that builds high quality tractors right here in Ohio and I was so impressed by the quality and the fact that it was nearly 100% made in the USA that I knew it was worth checking out. That led me to the best job interview I have ever had. The one where I came home with dirty hands.
The fact is, I owe you thanks, Mike. Had you not inspired me and so many others to rise above our stigmas of blue collar work and not be afraid to do something that is dirty, hard, and exhausting I would still be looking for a job. But instead, I started work this week crating up tractors and smiling. Thank you for showing me that real work is available to those who want it and not to worry about not having experience to start. I was able to get this great job even though I had only retail experience. I’m thrilled to be working and working at a job that matters, building something that people use every day to do even more hard work. I couldn’t resist the urge to introduce myself by saying, “My name is Mike Miller, and this is my job.”
FB logo I’d like to say thank you for being such a positive influence on my fiance, Steve. He had been working retail for years, before and after we met and began dating. He was so miserable everyday, never successful in school even when he tried to go to community college unaware of what he wanted to do with his life. Well, he found a job with a fabricator in his shop and it opened him up to a world of labor. Working with his hands and seeing him challenged by his work and not bored by it was an immediate turnaround.
Now, he has a legitimate job with a great company making pretty good money starting out, supporting our kids and myself. (He’s learning to weld things I wont pretend to know about). We even moved 1400 miles for his job! Relocating has not been easy, we know no one here (aside from a long personal friend), and money is tight. It has been a challenge for him being the outsider in a small town where these men have grown up with each other, but he talked about your page constantly, an every day conversation piece for us both, and I know it helped spur his passion to get out of retail and into the labor pool. These jobs are out there. This company was massively hiring for welders, even Steve with his little to no knowledge. They were willing to train him, and wait for our 2nd child to be born before fully hiring him. All it took was dedication and passion.
Thank you Mike Rowe for playing a part in his journey, it may seem like a small contribution but it was magical! Angelica Carey
sm email logoSent by Nolan K. • I wanted to voice how correct you are about MY generation…including myself at one point. I recently read your response to the “Work Ethic” comment and wanted to agree 100% with you. When I graduated with my graduate degree I had/(actually still have) a ton of debt and no job opportunities, actually no job opportunities I wanted. I felt that with my MBA I was entitled to be given a job in management straight away. I turned down a job offer that was going to put me on the management track, but it wasn’t instant gratification. I was going to have to work this entry level job for 18 months doing with about 10 hours of overtime a week. After I turned it down I became desperate for work as I graduated. I luckily found a job working in the oil and gas fields doing manual labor and running equipment. I worked 80-110 hours in a 7 day, sometimes nights, week (and I thought 50 would kill me). I did this for about a year before I emailed the man who interviewed me for the office job, asking him for another shot. He gave it to me and I’m facing a promotion in a couple months into management, my 9 month mark with the company. I learned fast, came in early, and stayed late. Prior to the oilfield I though I knew hard work…I had no idea. That job made me grow up fast and realize what it meant to work hard. I realized nothing comes free, you have to earn everything. If you come in early, be professional, stay late when needed, and bust your butt everyday giving 110% it will pay off. The biggest thing I learned from my days carrying and installing pipe, running equipment all day and night, and working seemingly endless hours was not the skills, I’m in a completely different industry now, it was how to work hard and be grateful for what I now have. Had it not been for that job, I wouldn’t be facing a promotion. I’d probably have been fired for my lazy entitled attitude. Thanks for the message you’re sending. I plan on buying your S.W.E.A.T Pledge and Work Smart AND Hard posters, framing them, and hanging them in my office. I hope more young men and women embrace the lifestyle of working hard.
FB logoBeing a caterpillar apprentice in the marine industry I can’t thank you enough for trying to spread the knowledge that going to college isn’t the only way to make it in life. I’ve got so many friends that have gone to college or going to college and don’t see any possibilities past that. I’m now being trained by a great mechanic that has been doing this for over 25 years. I couldn’t ask for a better way to make a living. I wish some more people in my generation would realize like I did. I’m glad someone else sees it too. Thank you. Aaron Davis
sm email logoSent by Zac C. •I just wanted to write to you today to tell you how inspirational you can actually be. I pretty much grew up watching Dirty Jobs. Your show had helped me realize there’s more to education than going to college. There’s plenty of trades that need people that aren’t afraid of a little sweat on their backs. By the time I was in high school, I knew that I didn’t want to go to college. College is great for certain aspects, but I knew I wouldn’t gain much work related experience there. I ended up going to a career center the last two years of high school. I am now 19, with a great career as a Power Lineman for AEP. I’m not here to tell you about my life, but I think it’s great that you are helping other young adults find their career choice. As a kid, I know how great it is for us young folk to have a solid career. Keep doing what you’re doing! They are appreciative of what you do! Thank you for the inspiration.
FB logoI wanted to let you know that school (Universal Technical Institute) is going great! Words cannot describe the appreciation I have for receiving that scholarship for school from your foundation. It has, and will continue to, change my life and those around me once I graduate! God bless you and your impact in people’s lives! Andrew J Williams
FB logoMy daughter, Courtney Dean, won the Mike Rowe Works scholarship and I wanted you to see what she put on her wall. She is so appreciative for this opportunity! Thanks, Mike!
“So for those of you who don’t know, I finish my extern hours tomorrow, take my certification test May 12th, graduate from MTI May 15th, and I start working in the lab at Cox Adult Medicine and Endocrinology Specialists May18th! I can’t thank everyone enough for helping and supporting me through the scholarship process and during the 9 crazy packed months of homework, tests, and studying. I thank God everyday for blessing me with this wonderful opportunity to go to school and come out completely debt-free.
And I can’t thank Mike Rowe enough for the mikeroweWORKS Scholarship, it really has changed my life. I’m going to be starting a career as a medical assistant without any debt and I don’t know anybody else who can say that. I’m just so grateful for everything.”
Terri Dean