Explorer Shadow Program

The Explorer Shadow program is a one-day job shadowing experience that allows La Salle students to observe a professional and get a behind-the-scenes look at a specific job or company. Alumni are encouraged to register to host a student and share their career experience.

How to be a Shadow Host

Prepare a Shadow Experience Description

In addition to completing the registration form, please prepare a description of the job shadow experience. The job shadow description is your opportunity to provide a glimpse of the career insights a student will gain from spending the day with you and your colleagues at your work site.

When writing the description, consider the following: 

  • What will students DO? 
  • What will students LEARN?  What career insights will the student(s) gain from the job shadow? 

Most students will do a keyword search to narrow down all the posted job shadows to those that interest them, so it’s important that your description includes the keywords a student is likely to use.  Suggested length is 50-350 words.

The description should also include any pertinent information such as proof of immunity requirements, citizenship requirements etc.

Prepare for Shadow Day

Beginning November 6, 2023, you will be notified when a student indicates interest in your shadow.

Once matched with a student, you will contact them directly to select a date for shadow and provide relevant information. If you need additional information about the student in order to finalize the agenda, this is the time to obtain it. Once a date is finalized, contact the Alumni Office to let us know when the shadow will take place.

Prior to Shadow Day, prepare an agenda so the student can know what to expect. You can find ideas for structuring your Shadow Day below.

Virtual Shadow Day experiences are welcome as well if you work from home, or are not able to go into the office for Shadow Day.

Ideas for Day of Shadow

The goal of the Explorer Shadow Program is for students to get a true feel for a typical workday at your organization. We encourage hosts to have students shadow employees as they move throughout their day, however, watching you answer email for two hours is probably not going to reveal much about what your career field and industry is all about, so plan activities to help the student gain a better understanding of the career field. Do you have a unique facility? An amazing mentorship program for new employees? Unlimited vacation days? Show off the perks of your company and its culture by giving students an inside perspective. 

It helps to start with what you want the student to take away from the day, and then organize the schedule and itinerary around those. Here are some questions you might want to think about in preparing the job shadow experience. 

  • What are the typical career paths for people in my company? In addition to myself are there a few others who might have time to meet with the student(s)? 
  • Are there meetings that take place which would provide students a view of collaboration skills needed to be effective in our environment? 
  • How about experiential learning? Is there some work that the student could try their hand at to give them a real taste of the field? 
  • Are there daily operations that would provide a good view of our work? 
  • Are there people I need to check with before having a student sit in on a meeting or listen in on a conference call? 
  • Does the student need to sign a confidentiality statement at the beginning of the day? 

Structuring the Agenda

Start the day by review the Agenda for the day and provide some orientation of your company. This is also a good time to share your career path since graduating from La Salle.

Please note, we ask that the host/organization be responsible for lunch for your shadow.

 For the rest of the day, students can: 
  • Attend client and internal meetings, and other functions (Try to schedule meetings on the day of the visit so the student can sit in) 
  • Conduct informational interviews with colleagues to learn about other areas of the organization and to obtain a variety of career perspectives 
  • Tour the facility/ organization 
  • Learn through one hour rotations in various departments 
  • Observe interactions with colleagues and customers 
  • Shadow a person in a specialized role
  • Experience employee demonstration of industry-specific software or tools 
  • Help out with office tasks, reports or projects 
  • Meet other La Salle alumni and employees

 You can also provide the following during Shadow Day: 

  • Review current trends in the profession and industry 
  • Explore potential career paths within the organization and the profession 
  • Offer advice on what the student can do while in school to prepare for this career  
  • Make suggestions for the student’s resume and LinkedIn profile 

Leave time for reflection on the day’s experience and consider sharing your reflections with the student. They will definitely appreciate it and you might end up viewing your workplace with a different perspective. 

Sample Agendas

9:00 a.m. Arrival, office introductions with Jessica Smith, Director of Network Operations (Alumna host for the day)

9:30 a.m. Shadow Jessica during the 9:30 staff meeting

10:00 a.m. Shadow Jessica to observe her Project Management role

10:30 a.m. Shadow Jessica as she gathers project updates from direct reports

11:00 a.m. Tour of office by Jessica

Noon Lunch with Jessica including Q&A time / informational interview

1:00 p.m. Introduction to Aamir Patel, Manager of IT Operations

1:30 p.m. Observe Aamir during client meetings

3:30 p.m. Shadow Aamir during post-meeting activities

4:00 p.m. Observe Aamir during follow-up activities

4:30 p.m. Debrief and discussion about what student learned (Jessica)

5:00 p.m. Departure

9:00 a.m. Arrival – Visitors’ Entrance

9:05 a.m. Meet with Host to discuss the day’s activities, including an overview of the company and its clients

10:00 a.m. Plant Tour – Gerald K.

10:45 a.m. Meet & Greet – Vice President Sales, North America

11:15 a.m. Participate in role plays: “Steps to Making a Sale” and “Steps to Finding Facts” – Sales Team

12:15 p.m. Lunch with La Salle alumni

1:30 p.m. Informational interview – One-on-one with Sales Team member

2:15 p.m. Observe a presentation to a client – Sales Team

3:30 p.m. Marketing Roundtable: Questions, Answers, and Advice – Marketing Team

4:30 p.m. Meet with Host to discuss the day and wrap-up

9:00 a.m. Host: Welcome, Introductions, Briefing of expectations, policies, company background, etc.

10:0 0 a.m. Host: Tour

10:45 a.m. Informational Interviews with department staff

Noon Lunch with EIU Alumni/Department staff

1:00 p.m. Meeting with VP Finance

1:30 p.m. Department meeting

2:00 p.m. Resume review and career advice, Director of Finance

2:45 p.m. Finance “mock assignment”

3:45 p.m. Finance Department Panel/Roundtable

Host FAQ

What if my workplace doesn’t allow visitors? What if I work alone/at home?

For the comfort and safety of our students, please be sure at least one other adult is present during the shadow or you meet in a public place. Alternatively, you can host a virtual job shadow.

Should you participate in Shadow Day virtually, still consider the agenda suggestions above. If your time together is more than an hour, be sure to allow for breaks in the schedule.

Are hosts guaranteed a match? 

No, matches depend on the specific interests of the students who apply.

Can I screen students based on their GPA? 

A screening tool for GPA is not available. We ask that you do not list GPA requirement in your job shadow description. 

Is there any cost associated with this? 

You or your organization will cover the cost of lunch for the student. 

What if I need to cancel after student(s) have already applied for my job shadow opportunity? 

You will need to notify the student that you must cancel and/or make other arrangements. You must also notify Debra Franke at 215-991-3582 or franke@lasalle.edu. 

What about liability? 

The University Career Center and Office of Alumni Engagement are not able to sign any agreements with employers, organizations, or companies on behalf of the University. It is important to note that, as a general practice, the University does not provide any type of insurance coverage for, or on behalf of, students during a job shadow. 

Can I screen by citizenship status? 

Yes, you may specify citizenship requirements in your description, if yours is a government or restricted company/organization. 

What if there are specific requirements, for example proof of immunity in a health care setting? 

Please include these requirements in the Shadow description.

What are students responsible for? 

  • Transportation to and from 
  • Notifying you if they cannot participate due to an emergency 
  • Dressing and acting in a professional manner 
  • Preparing questions for you and your colleagues 
  • Sending you a thank you email 

Host Registration Questions

Download this form as a PDF

1. Person completing this form

Prefix (Mr, Ms, Dr, etc.)
* First name
* Last name
* Email
* Phone

*Is this the same person who will act as host on the day of the shadow?
· Yes
· No

If “No” is selected: *Who should receive future emails regarding the shadow program?
· Person who is completing this form
· Host
· Both

2. *Short Shadow Description for Title

· Public Relations Manager shadow
· Clinical Trial Coordinator in Pharma Company shadow

3. *Semester(s)

What semesters are you interested in participating in the shadow program?
· Fall only (shadows take place 12/4/23 – 1/31/24)
· Spring only (shadows take place 3/11/24 – 5/31/24)
· Fall and Spring

4. *Company/organization
· Name
· Website
· Company Description (700 characters maximum)

5. In most cases, a job shadow is held in-person in your workplace. There may be situations, however, where this is not feasible, such as:

·  You work alone and/or work from home
·  Sensitive nature of your work
·  HIPPA requirements
·  COVID restrictions

In these cases, you may offer a virtual job shadow (https://www.lasalle.edu/alumni/virtual-job-shadow/).

*Select one of the following:
· I AM able to offer an in-person job shadow in my workplace. Other adults will be present during the shadow day.
· I am NOT able to offer an in-person shadow, but I would be glad to offer a virtual job shadow.
· Other – please explain

5. *Relevant  Career Cluster(s)

Select the career cluster(s) that are relevant to this shadow:
· Accounting, Actuarial Science, Finance, Economics
· English, History, Foreign Languages, Education, Philosophy, Religion, Art History, American Studies
· Computer Science, IT, Business Systems & Analytics, Math, Integrated Science Business Technology (ISBT)
· Public Health, Nutrition, Communication Sciences & Disorders (Speech-Language-Hearing), Nursing, Healthcare
· Communication, Mass Media, Journalism, Management, Human Resources, Business Administration, Nonprofit Leadership
· Marketing, Public Relations, Digital Arts
· Biology, Chemistry, Biochemistry, Bioengineering, Environmental Science
· Political Science, Psychology, Philosophy, Religion, Criminal Justice, Sociology, Social Work, Law, ·International Relations, International Business

7. *Job Shadow Description

Describe the host’s role and what the job shadow will encompass (2000 characters maximum)
· See the Host FAQ for ideas for the shadow day, sample agendas, and sample descriptions.
· You do not need to have a detailed hour-by-hour agenda completed, but you should have a fairly clear idea what the student will DO/experience/observe and what the student will LEARN.
· Do NOT enter job description of the person student will shadow. Instead, describe what the student will DO and what the student will LEARN.
· Most students will do a keyword search to narrow down all the posted job shadows to those that interest them, so it’s important that your description includes the keywords a student is likely to use.

8. Requirements

Include specific requirements such as
· Clearances (criminal record, FBI fingerprint, etc.) – specify which ones are required
· Proof of vaccination or immunity – specify which ones are required
· Required safety attire (e.g. steel-toed shoes in a manufacturing environment)
· Non-disclosure agreement
· Government issued ID
· If yours is a government or restricted company/organization, you may include work authorization requirements

It is your responsibility to send the necessary paperwork to the student(s) AND/OR remind the student(s) what paperwork they must provide prior to the shadow or bring on the shadow day.

9. *Exact address of the job shadow site

This information will be available to students so they can determine, before they indicate interest in your opportunity, whether they will be able to get to the site via the transportation options available to them.
· Street
· City
· State
· Zip

10. *Host contact information

Provide contact info for the person who will be hosting the student(s) for the shadow. This information will be shared with the student(s) who are matched to your shadow opportunity.
Since all fields are required, use N/A (Not Applicable) for any information you do not want to share with students.

· Host Prefix (Mr, Ms, Dr, etc.)
· Host First Name
· Host Last Name
· Is host a La Salle alumnus/a (yes, no, not sure)
· Host Title
· Host Company/Organization
· Host Email
· Host Work Phone
· Host Cell Phone
· Host LinkedIn URL

11. Host Experience (optional)

Some students may be particularly interested in shadowing a host whose experience as a student was similar to the student’s experience.

You may select more than one that applies to the Host.

This information will be shared with students.

· First gen student (first in your family to attend college)
· International student
· Commuter student
· Student athlete
· Black or African American
· Hispanic or Latino
· Asian
· American Indian or Alaska Native
· Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander
· Other (please specify)

12. Additional Information

Please include any additional information you would like to share about the host (such as background and interests) and/or the type of students that would benefit from this job shadow (for example: career interests). (500 characters maximum)

13. What is the maximum number of students you would be able to accept for this shadow each semester?

· *Fall (enter a number):
· *Spring (enter a number}:
· Comment/additional information:

14. *Approval Required?

Have you received approval (if required) from your supervisor/administrators to be a job shadow host?

· Approval not required
· Approval received
· Approval required, not received yet

If “Approval required, not received yet” is selected: It is your responsibility to obtain this approval prior to the shadow date.

15. *How did you hear about us?
• Email
• La Salle University Career Event
• La Salle University Faculty or Staff Member
• La Salle Alumni E-newsletter
• LinkedIn
• Facebook
• Instagram
• Not sure/Don’t remember
• Other:

16. Is there any additional information you would like to provide to the shadow program administrators? Do you have any questions for the administrators about the program?

Information for Students

Looking for an inside perspective on what it really means to work in an industry or career of interest? Spend a day shadowing a La Salle alum or professional in a career field that interests you! Learn more.

  • Explore behind the scenes of a career path or field of interest
  • Receive career advice and tips
  • Network with professionals

When does the Shadow Program run?

  • Both Fall & Spring semesters
  • Students can participate in either one or both semesters of each academic year

Student Program Contact: Noelle Stueck, shadow@lasalle.edu