Exploration

Set Up a Job Shadow in 5 Minutes

Wondering how you can make the most of winter break? Consider setting up a job shadow with a Boston College alum.

A job shadow is an exploration opportunity you to gain insight into an industry, organization, or job function of interest, make connections, and further discern how your skills, interests, and values translate to the workplace. Shadowing takes many forms, but some typical formats include:

  • Full or half day of shadowing on-site at an organization
  • Tour of office
  • Lunch meeting to discuss host’s career journey 
  • Exploratory career conversations with various individuals working in different functions

Follow the below easy steps to set up your own job shadow through Eagle Exchange, our digital networking platform. Note: In order to set-up a job shadow, you will need to create a profile first.

Find your connection

  • Click on the “EXPLORE THE COMMUNITY” Tab in the top navigation bar. This is where you can view all searchable Boston College professionals
  • To help narrow down your search, use the filters bar. Make sure you click “Apply” after selecting criteria to update your search results.
  • Under the “Help Topics” filter, select “Job Shadowing”
  • Under the “Industry Expertise” filter, select as many industries of interest as you would like. We recommend choosing at least three. 
  • Finally, enter a specific geographic location using the “Location” bar. Be sure to only include locations that will be easily accessible to you over break. Metro areas will most likely yield the most results.
  • Search the profiles of the alumni in your final results pool to determine who you’d like to potentially shadow
  • Once you’ve identified an alum, click on “Let’s Connect”, then “Send a Message”
View how to quickly find a connection on Eagle Exchange

Set up your one-day visit

Consider this sample template when reaching out to your potential host:

Dear Valeri,

I’m a first year communication student at Boston College from Shady Hill, NJ. I’m interested in setting up a job shadow over winter break and found your profile very interesting.  I see that you work as an editor at Little Brown Books. I am eager to learn more about the publishing industry and whether it would be a good fit for me.

Would you be open to hosting a job shadow this winter break? Ideally, I’d like to set up a day to visit between January 6-9. If you and your employer are open to hosting, please see the Boston College Career Center’s guide Best Practices for Hosting a Job Shadow.

Thank you for your consideration. I look forward to hearing back from you.

Sincerely,
Jamie Dunne ’23
Morrissey College of Arts & Sciences
Major: Communication

Make final preparations before leaving for break

  • Register your job shadow via this form once you’ve set a date with the alum. Pick up your thank you gift for your host at the Career Center before you leave for break.
  • Confirm date, time, and location of your job shadow within one week of the visit. Make sure that the agreed upon time is still convenient for your host.
  • Prepare for your shadow by checking out Best Practices for Student Job Shadows.
julianne-smith
—By Julianne Smith, Associate Director, Career Education
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