The Job Shadow program is produced through a partnership among Career Services and Cooperative Education, Enrollment, Alumni Relations, the Sawyer Business School, and the College of Arts and Sciences.

This initiative matches sophomores, who are at a crucial time in their academic and career decision-making process, with professionals in their area of interest for an externship/job shadowing experience. Please note that alumni do not need to be the official host. It is acceptable if other staff members within the alumnus’ company or organization are directing the student.

This experience can last from 1-5 days during spring break and should provide an inside look at a job, firm, and/or career. Students should see first-hand how the organization runs and what and how work is done in a typical workday. They can learn about employer expectations firms, understand the organizational culture and pace, and gain a sense of how their own interests and skills fit.

Some of the activities that a Job Shadow Sponsor might have a student engage in are:

  • Tour the organization
  • Shadow the sponsor and/or colleagues during the workday
  • Observe general office tasks, staff meetings, and interactions of one or more departments
  • Observe client interactions or assist clients directly
  • Assist with office tasks or projects; prepare or proofread documents
  • Experience employee demonstration of industry-specific software or tools
  • Review the organization’s website, mission, marketing collateral, organizational charts
  • Have meal with sponsor or others (typical of what staff might do if lunching together)
  • Conduct informational interviews to understand the firm, industry, future trends, and career paths within this field
  • Meet HR staff to understand what they look for when hiring college graduates
  • Shadow a current college intern for a day

There are no costs to the sponsor for hosting a student and the sponsor can decide which day(s) during spring break they wish to have the student visit. The deadline, for student applications is December 1. The matching of students will take place in December and January, with assignments identified at least six weeks prior to spring break in March.

Any professionals interested in sponsoring one or more students should fill out the registration form.

Questions should be directed to Betsy McDowell, associate director of Career Services, at or 617.573.8480