Career Shadowing

When we returned from spring break this past Monday (March 21), the building seemed a little quieter than usual. It puzzled me a bit, and then I remembered that all our eighth graders were out of the building on an adventure into the working world known as Career Shadowing.
Career Shadowing is an opportunity for the students to visit a business in which they are interested and to observe in person for a day how it operates. The students are able to discuss the pros and cons of a particular field with someone who is actually performing the job. The insight they gain into a particular career can be transformative. I’ve heard from many alumni about how this brief mentorship has stayed with them and helped them by either confirming their interest or helping them see some other direction might be a better fit.
Whether it has any bearing on their future employment decisions or not, Career Shadowing is exciting. From beginning to end, Career Shadowing is student led and calls on all the skills they have acquired in their years here. The students must:
be introspective and thoughtful about determining their field of interest.
research the opportunities available in that field.
communicate effectively with the professional/business of their choosing to arrange their experience.
prepare for the visit itself. 
conduct themselves in a professional and courteous manner during their shadowing day.
thank their professional mentors afterward with a formal letter.
collate all the information they have gathered.
prepare a presentation that shows what they have learned, and 
effectively communicate their findings to folks from kindergarteners through adults on Career Day.
I can hardly wait to see and hear the students’ presentations on Tuesday, April 5, as Career Day is one of my favorite events of the school year. Career Day truly showcases the talents of our oldest students. It is one of the culminating events of our students' time here, and even though I work with these kids every day, I am still impressed each year by the quality of their presentations. 
Included here are just a few pictures from some of this year’s Career Shadowing adventures. Make a note to attend the Career Day presentations on April 5, 9 a.m. to 12 noon. I am greatly anticipating hearing all about what the eighth graders have learned through this unique and impactful experience.