During winter break Davidson students will have the opportunity to explore careers that interest them through the Office of Career Services' Job Shadowing Program. Initiated last year with 30 host organizations and 20 student participants, the program has expanded dramatically this year to include more than 265 organizations from across the country that are inviting Davidson students to join them for a day on the job.
Ashley Neff, Assistant Director for Internships in the Office of Career Services, orchestrated the initiative. "We wanted to create a program that gives students exposure to career fields, and get our alumni and parents engaged without requiring a big time commitment from them," she explained.
A wide variety of host organizations are involved, representing fields from technology and medical research to arts and entertainment. Participants include mega-companies like Google, Microsoft and General Electric. Communications and government organizations involved include ABC News, CNN, Centers for Disease Control and the Environmental Protection Agency.
Over half of the job shadowing experiences are clustered in Charlotte, Atlanta, Washington, New York, and Raleigh-Durham, though many are located in other cities across the country.
"This is a great opportunity to explore a career field or a job that you may not have thought about before, or want to learn about first-hand," Neff said. "It's also a great networking opportunity to meet alumni or parents who are working at all of these great organizations."
She continued, "A lot of the hosts are setting up meetings with coworkers from other departments so the students can rotate around a bit and talk to different people in the company. Some hosts will also set up meetings with human resources department personnel to talk with students about career opportunities."
Hosts are also being invited to help students learn the value of their liberal arts education. "We are asking hosts who graduated from Davidson or similar schools to talk about how they found their liberal arts education to be relevant to their jobs," said Neff. "I think it will really give students a chance to see how their education can translate to a variety of different occupations."
Applications for students to apply to the program are due by December 3 on WildcatLink. It will be the responsibility of accepted students to arrange shadowing dates and plans with their hosts.
Learn more about how to apply to the Job Shadowing Program.