Job Shadowing Information for Sponsors

A Day in the Life job shadowing program is a one-day experience during winter and/or spring break that gives sponsors the opportunity to make a meaningful impact on a student’s career by offering a window into their world of work.

The program is designed for first-year, sophomore and junior students who are just beginning their career exploration process. As a Hamilton alumna/us or current parent you are in an ideal position to understand and relate to students at this early stage of their career development.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact David Bell, director of career development.

Volunteer Now

Sample Matches from Past Years

  • Ashley Thayaparan ’21 and Dr. Howard Ross P’21, surgeon at Temple University Hospital
  • Luke Eckels ’20 and Christopher Jusuf ’15, communications director at the U.S. House of Representatives
  • Sarah Keefe ’20 and Liza Duke P’19, managing director at Deutsche Bank
  • Graham McOsker ’20 and Jonathan Alderson P’21 at Jonathan Alderson Landscape Architects
  • Eve Belizaire ’21 and Hon. Jem Sponzo ’03, Judge for U.S. Department of Justice
  • Henry Golden ’20 and Sydney Cantor ’16, marketing campaign analyst at Bounce Exchange
  • Kathryn Hacker ’19 and Caroline Clarke ’14, kindergarten teacher at Success Academy Charter Schools
  • Jake Kahn ’19 and Katherine Meyers ’00, manager of financial planning at Vermont Energy Investment Corp.

Career and Metro Areas

Although not exclusively, from past years we know that students are especially interested in exploring…

Career Areas:

  • Finance & Consulting
  • Medicine & other health professions
  • Data analytics/business analyst
  • Communications
  • STEM

Metropolitan Areas of special interest:

  • New York
  • Boston
  • Philadelphia
  • Washington, D.C.

How the Program Works

Beginning in October, students who have participated in a Shadowing Orientation Session can go online to a shadowing portal where they search for a sponsor by various categories: career field, location, and/or major in college.

Once the student identifies a sponsor, they send an introductory email to the sponsor to confirm the match and to begin a conversation regarding logistics.


Winter Break Program
Oct. 21 - Nov. 21 — Student will contact you between these dates to arrange a mutually convenient day for the job shadow to occur.
Dec. 17 - Jan. 17 — Job shadows should take place between these dates at a time that works for you and the student.

Spring Break Program
Feb. 10 – Feb. 28 — Student will contact you between these dates to arrange a mutually convenient day for the job shadow to occur.
Mar. 16 - Mar. 27 — Job shadows should take place between these dates at a time that works for you and the student.

Planning for a Student’s Visit

A typical visit may include an office tour, meeting key personnel, sitting in on meetings, a discussion of your work function and how it fits into the overall operations of your organization, as well as an overview of your career trajectory (and graduate school experience if applicable).

Most students enjoy the opportunity to engage in the work of the organization, so feel free to assign a project to work on or a task to perform as appropriate. In the event that you are not able to be with your student for part of the time during the visit, please designate a colleague to do so in advance.

The framework for the job shadow can be determined by your role, company/organization, and preference on what to share with the student. In addition you might:

  • Allow the student to observe a meeting (with other staff, clients, board members, etc.);
  • Offer career advice and/or feedback on the student’s resume;
  • Suggest resources (books, websites) for further career exploration;
  • Provide networking contacts;
  • Introduce the student to a colleague in the same or a different department and/or arrange for the student to spend some time with that colleague;
  • Have the student listen to phone conversation(s);
  • Advise the student about how to make the most of their Hamilton experience;
  • Offer to take the student to lunch and/or set them up with a colleague;
  • Discuss any summer internship opportunities that might be available at your organization and strategies for how the student might be successful in their application.

Please remember that these students are often at the beginning stages of career exploration and decision making. Try to bring yourself back to that period of your life to remember what level of awareness you had about the world of work. You may want to have a preliminary phone conversation with the student to ask more about career objectives and what the student hopes to learn during the job shadow. Even if your work function does not align exactly with the student’s interests, s/he will benefit from learning about the world of work and what it is like to be in a professional setting.

Travel Logistics

It would be a good idea to discuss travel details with the student before arrival so that s/he has a realistic idea of how long it might take to get to the workplace. The student may be unfamiliar with your area, so any local travel information and help with travel planning to/from the airport, bus or train station would be appreciated. If a student plans to arrive by car, please provide information about parking (e.g., in company lot, on street, in garage) if available. Also, you are not expected to cover the costs of the student’s meals, but of course this is fine if you choose to do so.

Additional information to discuss with your student

Please advise the student about appropriate attire, the hours to be spent at your workplace, information about the locale and/or weather, and any documents (e.g., identification, passport) needed for security clearance if required.


Shadowing not only helped me understand the logistics of each department in children's literature (publicity, editorial, marketing, sales, finance), but I was also able to build connections with staff in each field and get applicable, realistic advice. 

Kayah Hodge '21 — creative writing major

Me and My Shadow
Stefanie Chin ’20 with Caroline Harrington ’16

Me and My Shadow

“At the end of the day, I’m still a sophomore in college, and I still don’t really know what I’m doing with my life. What I do know, though, is that MarketSmiths added a whole new layer of endless possibilities for me out there. And I’m excited to keep exploring.”

Contact Information

Career Center

Third floor of Bristol Center
198 College Hill Road
Clinton, NY 13323 
315-859-4346 ccadmin@hamilton.edu
Back to Top