job shadowing in high school

Posted : August 26, 2014
Last Updated : August 26, 2014
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job shadowing in high school

Job shadowing is an opportunity for students to spend a day with a competent worker in order to learn about a career and observe daily work activities. This opportunity is usually offered through your high school and/or community programs, such as Junior Achievement. Review these benefits of job shadowing and learn what you should do on the day of your job shadowing event.

Benefits of Job Shadowing
Job shadowing can be a beneficial and rewarding experience in numerous ways. By participating in a job shadowing program, you will:

  • Develop a more realistic outlook on a career. As you participate in job shadowing, you will learn in depth about the educational preparation, competencies, and experience that is required to enter that specific field.
  • Understand better what you want and do not want in a career. Job shadowing allows you to see firsthand what tasks are required for a certain position. You will witness and possibly perform duties that you enjoy and some that you do not enjoy. This will help you make an informed decision about whether you want to pursue a career in that particular field.
  • Be introduced to a career that you may not have considered. If you partake in a variety of job shadowing events, then you may be introduced to a career field that you had not even considered. And who knows, you may enjoy the encounter so much that you decide to major in a field of study for that career.
  • Gain experience to include on your high school resume. A job shadowing experience is a valuable detail to include on your high school resume, especially if you don’t have a part-time job. This entry on your resume will show college recruiters and employers that you have a desire to learn and a willingness to expand your horizons.
  • Expand your networking contacts. Learning how to properly network is a skill that will immensely benefit your future career. The earlier you begin the networking process, the greater your networking circle will be and the more employment options you may have. Use your job shadowing experience to help build a solid networking circle for you to utilize in the future.

The Day of Your Job Shadowing Event
You want to learn as much as possible and make a positive impression on the day of your job shadowing event. Be sure to follow these guidelines.

  • Dress according to the standards of the particular job site.
  • Arrive 10 to 15 minutes before the scheduled time.
  • Call the company and teacher/community program if you are unable to attend on the scheduled day.
  • Follow all guidelines and policies of the company.
  • Plan to purchase your lunch depending on the time of your shadowing schedule. Some companies will provide lunch for their job shadowing participants, but you should bring lunch money just in case.
  • Participate in daily tasks when asked and offer to do so when appropriate.
  • Take good notes.
  • Ask questions if you need clarification about certain aspects of the job.
  • Thank the person that you shadowed on the day of the event and send a thank-you note a few days later.
  • Reflect on your job shadowing experience. What did you learn? How did the experience help prepare you for your future career?

For more information about participating in a job shadowing event, contact your school counselor or a community group that coordinates this type of program.


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job shadowing in high school






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