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ClarkCONNECT Alumni Job Shadow Program 2021-2022

The ClarkCONNECT Alumni Job Shadow Program is an opportunity for students to connect with alumni already working in careers they are interested in pursuing after graduation. For students looking for more than “just a job,” connecting with alumni helps students validate their passions, realize their potential, and set goals to help them move closer tfinding meaningful work in the future. For alumni, the job shadow program is a chance to reflect upon their own career path and share their wisdom with students who are eager to learn.  

New Changes to the Program!

This year, we are focusing on creating and maintaining lasting relationships between students and alumni. We believe when participants are able to bring their authentic selves to the program, they feel seen, feel heard, and can better address the career-related needs and issues tied to their core values and identity. 

Last year’s participants expressed an interest in connecting with alumni from various affinity groups. To help students connect with alumni they identify closely with, we’ve added the ability for alumni to self-identify as members of eleven affinity groups and for students to search for alumni based on their interests. We’re excited to offer this new addition to the program and to hear about the new connections that come as a result of it.  

In-Person and Remote Options Available 

The in-person job shadow allows students to experience a “day in the life” of someone working in a field they are interested in pursuing. The virtual job shadow provides students with many of the same benefits of an in-person job shadow with the added flexibility of being able to connect with alumni from all over the world.  

This year, alumni have the option to offer either or both types of opportunities. If COVID protocols change between now and the time of your job shadow day, we ask that alumni be prepared to offer a modified remote version of the job shadow with the support and guidance of the program manager.  

What participants are saying about the Alumni Job Shadow Program  

“I was so thrilled to be selected to participate in the ClarkCONNECT Alumni Job Shadow Program! Since graduating from Clark in 2008, I’ve sought opportunities to stay connected to current students and Clark itself. I was lucky to be paired with Eesha Kashif ’21 MBA ’22, and we hit it off almost immediately. I was able to share my own experiences navigating the post-college world and share my experiences since I’ve worked in a few different industries since leaving Clark. Eesha was an absolute delight and we have maintained contact even beyond the job shadow program. It’s been so exciting following her journey and being able to share my own experiences and professional insights with her. It’s also been a great developmental opportunity for my own career!”

Matt Pettengill ’08, Alumni Host 

“Meeting Matt was one of my favorite Clark experiences. Unfortunately, we could not connect in person due to COVID-19. However, we organized a Zoom call and I learned all about his work at UNUM, the realm of business development, as well as the insurance industry in general. I’m so glad to have found a mentor and friend in him. He always listens to my stories about school and is consistently there for me as a professional and personal cheerleader.”

Eesha Kashif ’21 MBA ’22, Alumni Job Shadow Program Participant 

 

Curious as to what an in-person job shadow looks like? Each day is as unique as the student and alum who plan it together. The following are examples of recent in-person job shadow experiences.

“Maddie from City Year Boston did a wonderful job showing us around. She asked me what my interests were and created a whole schedule for me accordingly. I had the opportunity to get connected to the Project Manager, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Director, and many other fascinating people. I really appreciated being able to see how an NGO works in the office as well as being a part of meetings and asking questions. Being able to meet three Clark Alumni and hear about their transition from college into the working world was amazing. I was truly positively surprised by how much I could learn in just one day and happy to be part of the program. I would recommend it to anyone looking for a one-day experience in which they can explore their opportunities after college. Most importantly, it was a great networking experience!”  

Kadijha Kuanda ’22 

“I completed the job shadow experience with Beth at Digital Insight Innovations in Watertown, MA. In addition to holding an exciting and challenging position in the data world, this alum is also a wonderful mentor and provided me with useful information and advice about careers and life. Throughout the day, my fellow shadows and I listened in on project meetings, met with a variety of employees in different career areas, and spoke with our host about her background and experiences. Speaking with one of her co-workers caused me to think more seriously about a career I was previously uncertain about and the encouragement from everyone we met in the office has boosted my confidence in finding a position in a company with a positive and healthy work culture. This was the best experience I have had through the Career Connections Center, and I would happily encourage other students to try it out.”

Sheila Ford ’21 

“I completed my job shadow experience with Alyssa who is the newsroom manager at Weill Cornell Medicine Office of External Affairs. I came into the day with the goal of learning about non-journalism careers and definitely accomplished just that. My host was kind enough to arrange meetings between me and other coworkers from different departments (e.g., social media, development, marketing) who worked alongside her. Most of her coworkers also had prior journalism experience, so the meetings were helpful to see what my options look like. I also met with new hires closer to my age who talked about their decision to go to grad school and how they entered the field. I was surprised with how warm and welcoming the corporate space could be. I would recommend this experience to others, especially those who are interested in learning about a career or field they know little to nothing about.”

Gari De Ramos ’21 

The virtual job shadow provides students with the same benefits of an in-person job shadow with the added flexibility of being able to connect with alumni from all over the world.  The following are examples of recent virtual job shadow experiences.

“I completed my job shadow with Brendan who is employed as a Geodetic Surveyor at REIB OÜ in Estonia. My alumni host made the whole process comfortable even though I went into it a little intimidated. I was inspired by my host to not make any decisions based on what other people think you should be doing or where you should be in terms of experience. This opportunity prepared me to take more risks and to reach out to more alumni because I learned that most alumni on ClarkCONNECT are willing to give you advice! I was surprised about how non-intimidating the process was. I learned I am capable, smart, and should be confident in the steps I take towards the career I want. I would recommend this program to peers because it is a perfect first step to networking, and gives you a taste of the field you are looking to get into. All of the career resources can be really overwhelming, so if you don’t know where to start — this is a good place!”

Danielle Hall ’23 

“I completed my job shadow with Christina who has worked in pharma since she graduated and is currently employed by Takeda Pharmaceutical Company. During our meetings she gave me an overview of her career progression and answered any questions I had. I am certainly more informed in the pharma career path now and joining the workforce seems a little less daunting. She gave me a lot of helpful information and tips about navigating the job search. Christina was very easy to get along with, which made our meetings very relaxed. She gave me amazing advice and helped me feel more confident about my future. I just feel so much more prepared now. She is the mentor I needed.”

Tara Stein ’21 

“For the program, I was matched with Kelsey of Year Up Boston. Overall, this was a great opportunity for me to connect with a recent alum in my major who leveraged their Clark experience to work in industry sectors that I am interested in doing future work in. The job shadow program was a great incentive to further go through Clark’s resources on finding a career, exploring my interests, and how to present the best version of myself to a future employer. It challenged me to do research on future organizations I might work with in my discipline and get serious about my immediate post-college steps. All throughout my undergraduate years, I have never been worried about ‘what I can do with my major,’ but the alumni job shadow program definitely helped me to visualize more concretely the types of positions and tasks I could be prepared to do successfully. I would definitely recommend this program to other students for the way in which it spurs you to research various employers and positions, gain relevant industry experience, and market yourself as a competitive candidate.”

Ian Hirons ’21

The ClarkCONNECT Alumni Job Shadow Program is open to current undergraduate sophomores, juniors, and seniors.

The alumni job shadow program is a one-day program that will take place between January 3 and January 14, 2022.  

Alumni application window  Open through October 31
Deadline for alumni to apply
 
October 31 at midnight
 
Student application window
 
November 1 – 19
 
Deadline for students to apply
 
November 19 at midnight
 
Matching period
 
Week of November 29
 
Acceptance notifications sent (students)
 
Week of December 7
 
Students reach out to alumni
 
Week of December 7
 
Know Before You Go orientation session
 
Week of December 13
 
Job Shadow Program January 3-14, 2022*

*Students and alumni who need to plan their shadow day outside of the program dates may do so. Please let the program manager know if this is the case.  

The ClarkCONNECT Alumni Job Shadow Program is hosted through ClarkCONNECTTo apply to the program, alumni must first join ClarkCONNECT and create an account.  

To Create a ClarkCONNECT Account

Creating an account is easy!  

  1. Visit ClarkCONNECT.  
  2. Click the red Join ClarkCONNECT button, where you will be guided through the steps required to set up your account. You can even upload information from your LinkedIn profile to save time! 

To Apply on ClarkCONNECT

The application window for alumni to apply will open on September 28, 2020Once you’ve created an accountyou can apply to the program by taking the following steps: 

  1. While logged into ClarkCONNECT, click the “Programs” tab athe top of the page.  
  2. After reading the “About” section, click the green “Join Program” button at the top of the page. 
  3. Select Mentor.” 
  4. Answer the application questions and submit your response. 

The ClarkCONNECT Alumni Job Shadow Program is hosted through ClarkCONNECTTo apply to the program, students must first join ClarkCONNECT and create an account. 

To Create a ClarkCONNECT Account

Creating an account is easy!  

  1. Visit ClarkCONNECT.  
  2. Click the red Join ClarkCONNECT button, where you will be guided through the steps required to set up your account.   

By “joining” the program, you have access to a directory of alumni willing to host a student at their place of employment or online between January 3 and January 14, 2022. To be matched with an alum, you will need to “apply” to the program  

To Apply on ClarkCONNECT

The application window for students to apply will open on October 19, 2020. Once you’ve created an account, you can apply to the program by taking the following steps: 

  1. While logged into ClarkCONNECT, click the “Programs” tab at the top of the page.  
  2. After reading the “About” section, click the green “Join Program” button at the top of the page. 
  3. Select Mentee.”
  4. Answer the application questions and submit your response. 

When determining eligibility, we consider the following:

  1. Your ClarkCONNECT Profile. We want to get to know you and see that you’re invested in making genuine connections with alumni. We aren’t using your profile to judge how much experience you’ve had, the types of experiences you’ve had, or the prestige connected to them. We just want to see that you care enough to make a positive first impression.  
  2. Application. As part of the application process, you’ll be asked to clearly articulate your logic in selecting and enthusiasm for your potential alumni host(s).  You will also be asked to lay out a feasible plan to participate that includes how you plan to travel to your host if the job shadow is in person. Funding of $50 is available to help students with the cost of travel. 
  3. Successful Completion of Orientation. The Know Before You Go orientation session is designed to help you 1) feel comfortable entering a new work environment, 2) make the most out of your job shadow experience, 3) make a genuine connection with your alumni host, and 4) use your experience for the purpose of future goal setting. In the rare case that the program manager observes behavior that leads them to believe you are unable or unwilling to successfully complete the program, the match may be retracted. 

Students will receive notification of their acceptance to the program and information about their alumni host during the week of November 8, 2021 

It is the student’s responsibility to reach out to alumni within 3 days of receiving the name of their host.  

“I really enjoyed this experience because it made me think about what I do in the classroom that is effective and worth sharing. My student had a list of well-thought-out questions about various aspects of ESOL education that made me reflect on how much I love this job and why I do it.” 

Alumni Volunteer 

“I was excited to participate in the job shadow program. I care deeply about mentorship, and the program only reaffirmed my interest in supporting undergrads and law students. To the extent I can provide insights into the work our organization does, I’m excited to continue participating.” 

Alumni Volunteer 

“I am so jealous that Clarkies get to have these experiences — what a cool opportunity for students and alums alike!”  

Alumni Volunteer 

“Through the program, I realized that one is capable of excelling if you’re surrounded by people who inspire you to do better. I was so impressed with the image that our school has out there, and this challenged me to maintain that standard. Every now and then when the host introduced me to an attorney, there was always a Clarkie doing something good out there.”  

A Third Year International Development and Social Change Major 

“I would recommend this program to my peers because it is a step outside of our comfort zone in terms of what we do at Clark. It gives us the chance to see what we can do with our degrees after Clark. It can also help us decide if we would like this possible career in the future.” 

A Fourth Year Biology Major  

“I felt like I really benefited from some of the meetings in which we talked about graduating from college and starting to work, and I left at the end of the day feeling a bit calmer and more prepared.” 

A Third Year Media, Culture and Arts Major 

For questions about the ClarkCONNECT Alumni Job Shadow Program, please email Elizabeth Gittens, Associate Director of Early Career Development, egittens@clarku.edu.

alumni students

MIT Solve

Alumna, Sharon Bort ’14 hosted multiple Clark students at MIT Solve, a hybrid business incubator and idea marketplace from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and provided a tour of their Bootstrap Compost facility, introductions to colleagues, and a hands-on project.

student with judge smiling at camera for job shadowing

Court Day

Clark student, Elliot Anderson ’22, job shadows, alumnus, Judge Brian Stern ’88, an Associate Justice at the Rhode Island Superior Court for a closer look in to a day in the life in law.

Contact Information

Career Connections Center

Office Location
  • Shaich Family Alumni and Student Engagement Center (ASEC Building)
    939 Main Street
    Worcester, MA 01610
  • 1-508-793-7258
  • 1-508-421-3752 Fax
Career Lab Hours
  • The Career Lab offers on-demand reviews of resumes, cover letters, and LinkedIn profiles 12 – 4 pm weekdays. Upload your documents, or make an appointment for the Career Lab on Handshake!