Job shadowing helps shed light on likes and dislikes


Recently I participated in a health-related career fair. At the event I overheard a student describing her experience that she had during her job-shadowing day.

She said she had heard about job shadowing and thought that it was highly over-rated. For some reason she was afraid to do it. However, she knew someone that worked at the business and called them to inquire about the opportunity. Her friend encouraged her to job shadow. She took the advice, did it and loved it. It changed her mind on her future career path.

Another student of mine recently job shadowed and found out her dream job was not at all how she had envisioned it to be. The negatives outweighed the positives. She used that experience to change her college major.

Both of these students learned the importance of job shadowing in choosing a career. Being decisive in your career path can save you thousands of dollars in college expenses and give you the edge on graduating early or on time and beating other students in getting the job that you want upon graduation.

Job shadowing offers students the opportunity to spend part of a day with a professional and observe, participate and ask questions. One can enhance the opportunity by preparing a list of questions before the event.

The following is a list of questions that you can and should ask during your job-shadowing experience:

What type of education and training prepared you for this career field? What type of education and training would you recommend for someone starting out in this field? What skills are necessary to be successful in this career? Describe a typical day at your job. What do you like most about this job? What do you dislike the most about this job? What advice do you have for someone considering this field? How much of your day is spent behind a desk or on your feet? What are some of the biggest challenges you face in this job? What does your employer look for in younger job seekers? What is the employment outlook for this career field?

These are just a sampling of questions that you can ask. Perhaps you have others that you want to add.

Knowing what you like to do and what you don’t like to do really just takes doing it to find out. Asking an 18-year-old student what they want to do when they grow up isn’t really a fair question.

They normally only know what they have been exposed to. It’s wise to expose children to many different careers as they grow up so they can begin to learn and experience what interests them and what doesn’t interest them.

College can be an expensive investment, and attending it for the shortest amount of time is the most economical way to accomplish it and receive a degree.

If your student knows what they want to study from the start, they can finish on time and get the head start on working in their career field upon graduation. Job shadowing can help them make that decision.

Call a business or organization today to schedule your job shadow.

To learn more about Higher Education Matters, be sure to visit the Holmes County Education Foundation at or follow us on Facebook or LinkedIn.

Loading next article...

End of content

No more pages to load