How to Set Up a Job Shadow

Here in the Office of Career Management, we’re constantly telling students to set up informational interviews. “They’re so important!” we say. “Do as many as you can!” we say.

But what happens after the informational interview? What if you want to know more? What if there’s a company you’re SO excited about that you just can’t even imagine working anywhere else? But you can’t yet, because you’re a freshman or sophomore and they won’t hire you yet? This is where a job shadow can swoop in and save the day!

By definition, a job shadow is a career exploration activity that offers an opportunity to spend time with a professional currently working in a person’s career field of interest. In other words, that person has the job you want at the company you want it at. You follow?

So to learn more about this particular job (as in, what does this person actually do all day?!?), setting up a job shadow can be an excellent way to see first-hand the duties and responsibilities of this individual, get a scope of the projects they work on, and even take a tour of the company.

The easiest way to initiate a job shadow is to find a professional with whom you would like to shadow and contact them in a professional manner. We recommend first reaching out to our office (The Office of Career Management) to see if any alumni have volunteered to have conversations with students.

From there, LinkedIn is your best bet. Start with OSU alumni in your chosen industry, and try to narrow your list down to 1-3 individuals. Reaching out to professionals in your chosen industry should always be in a professional, courteous manner. A sample email message to initiate the conversation can be found below.

Hello Mr. /Ms. Last Name

My name is Name, and I am currently a [year in school] at The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business and I am considering [field] as a future career path. After reviewing your LinkedIn profile, I was wondering if you might be willing to let me spend a day observing you so I can learn more about [field].

I would be extremely grateful if you allowed me to quietly observe you for a half day as you go about your usual schedule. If possible, it would be helpful if we also had a short interview toward the end of the shadowing so I could ask you any questions I might have about [field] after observing your activities and actions.
Thank you for considering my request. I will follow up with you in two weeks to answer any questions you may have.
Best regards,
Your Name
See? Easy peasy, lemon squeezy!
Check out our Informational Interviewing Guide for tons of other helpful tips, questions to ask, and how to prepare for future job shadowing opportunities. Now get out there and meet someone!

Inside of a Pre-Business Classroom

I have officially finished the first week of my second semester in college. It started with a National Championship win so, really, how could a week start any better?!

My courses this semester are very different than any courses I have taken so far in my education. Many of them are prerequisites that I need to take before starting my business courses. They deal with business concepts and are structured around preparing me for the workplace. This type of course content is new to me and I must admit, I love it.

My professors have already started applying their lessons to the professional business environment. I am not used to hearing professors talk about specific situations in which the concepts we are learning will be applicable in our careers. This is definitely a change for me and it will be more of a challenge, but it really makes me feel like I am in college.

In many of my courses this semester I will be spending a lot of time in Excel. In all honesty, I enjoy it. I love working in Excel and using the syntax (a new concept I learned just a few days ago). It makes sense to me. The rules are very black and white. If you follow those rules, the numbers are neat and the data is accurate. Being an accounting major, those are my favorite kinds of things. Working in Excel and loving it so much just makes me more confident in my choice of major.

The first week of the semester tends to set the tone for following 3 months. My current course load is going to be challenging but it will be a worthwhile challenge. I am excited to see how the information I learn applies to the workplace.

Fisher Spring Internship & Job Fair 2015 – Everything You Need to Know!

2015 Fisher Spring Internship and Job Fair
February 3, 2015
2pm – 6PM
The Ohio Union Archie Griffin Ballrooms
  • There is NO admission fee for students
  • Get the OSU Career Fair mobile app to access the Company Major Charts and the Fisher Spring Job and Internship Fair Map now! Booklets with company information will NOT be printed
  • Bring your BuckID, as you will need to swipe to get in
  • $1 per item coat check –  located on first floor across from Station 88

Spring Internship & Job Fair Company Hiring NeedsGet the app!  Download the OSU Career Fair+ mobile app to research companies attending the event along with the majors and job types employers are recruiting.

Log on to FisherConnect to view attending companies and submit your resume before the event. There is no preregistration required; students will register as they arrive at the fair.

Internship & Job Fair Prep Workshops

Wednesday, January 28  12:30-1:30pm  Schoenbaum 315

Thursday, January 29  1:00-2:00pm  Schoenbaum 209

Friday, January 30  2:30-3:30pm Schoenbaum 209

Keep Calm and Prioritize On

College schedules are absolutely insane. I thought I was a busy girl in high school but I had no idea what was coming! College is a time full of opportunity and excitement which includes dinner dates with friends, company visits, endless hours of studying, professional development and more. How have I dealt with these constant calls for my attention?

Prioritizing. It is something we all must learn how to do at some point. Being a freshman in college, I have learned how to prioritize pretty quickly. Obviously, I am attending The Ohio State University to obtain an education. Therefore, my top priority is always my academics. After thinking about what test I have this week or what homework is due tomorrow, I often will think about my passions. I have a passion for business and building my career, thus I put effort towards my career goals when I can. These efforts include things like blogging, updating my website and improving my resume. Another one of my passions is working out and being fit. Honestly, working out has been a bit of a struggle to maintain as a priority since school started. Working out is important to me because it acts as my main stress reliever. How have I continued to make this a priority? Each week, I try to focus on getting myself through the threshold, literally. If I walk in the door of the gym with my headphones in hand, I am making the time to work out. We all have these stress relieving hobbies that always seem to escape our schedules. I think the importance of these hobbies is often underestimated.

As I end this blog, I am already beginning to think about my next priority! I hope you are too.

2015 Leadership Summit


Want to stand out for job opportunities? The 2015 Leadership Summit is an annual, all-day experience that seeks to bring together aspiring student leaders from across Ohio State’s campus. This event will allow you the opportunity to uncover your leadership strengths and network.  The itinerary includes a VP of UPS opening speaker, break-out development sessions held by industry professionals and dinner with company recruiters.

The 2015 Leadership Summit will be held at the Ohio Union on January 31st from 1-7 PM.

Deadline to register is December 15th.

Find out more information and register online!