Dishes aren’t the stuff of dreams, but they’ll often get you there. Many a fine chef — April Bloomfield of New York’s The Breslin, The Spotted Pig, and John Dory, for one — has gotten a start in a kitchen wrangling sheet pans and dish racks.
Of course, moving beyond the sink isn’t guaranteed. And the job — one of a high-functioning kitchen’s most important — is often a thankless, dirty thing with little payoff, particularly when it comes to wages. The Bureau of Labor Statistics cites the mean hourly rate for a dishwasher as $8.98.