Dirty Jobs But Somebody Has To Do It

Alexander Peterson loves to work. The former Sampson Community College student loves to work so much, in fact, that his favorite television program was about working. The program, called Dirty Jobs and hosted by Mike Rowe, was a TV series on the Discovery Channel in which Rowe was shown performing difficult, strange, disgusting, or messy occupational duties alongside the typical employees.

Peterson, part of SCC’s Building Construction Technology program, heard about Rowe’s Work Ethic Scholarship Program offered to the public through the TV show. Peterson applied and became one of Rowe’s recipients for a scholarship to help him through school.

“I used to watch Mike Rowe’s TV show called Dirty Jobs,” recalls Peterson. “Then I started following him on Facebook and on his page, he would advertise this scholarship he created for trade school students. I applied by answering online questions and writing a short essay and I was one of the 200 students awarded this year. The award varies between students, but I was awarded $1500. It specifies that it can be used to pay for tuition, school supplies, or paying off a school loan.”


Peterson continues to build on his success

Each year, The Work Ethic Scholarship Program looks for the next generation of aspiring workers who will work smart and hard, according to its website. The Work Ethic Scholarship Program doesn’t focus on test scores, grades, or grammar. “It’s about the people who share our values and understand the importance of work ethic, personal responsibility, delayed gratification, and a positive attitude,” according to the site.

Barney Grady, Division Chair of Construction, Industrial Technology and Agriculture at SCC, has seen Peterson’s work ethic first hand. “He’s an excellent student,” says Grady. “I can’t think of another student more deserving of the award than Alexander. He went out there and he did it. To have someone tied to the show and bring that back home to apply it towards something solid, you can’t beat that.”

SCC’s Building Construction Technology prepares students to apply technical knowledge and skills to the fields of architecture, construction, construction management, and other associated professions. Course work includes instruction in sustainable building and design, print reading, building codes, estimating, construction materials and methods, and other topics related to design and construction occupations.

Peterson says he would do it all again. “The reason I chose SCC is because it was my local community college and it offered what I was looking for,” he said. “I chose construction because I like building things, especially with wood and that was the only program that I could do woodworking. My dad has built church furniture for a company so my whole life, building is in my blood.”

For more information about SCC’s Building Construction Technology program, contact Grady at bgrady@sampsoncc.edu or 910.900.4118.