Internships and job shadowing - is it for you?

How will I know if I will really like my job? Is this the right career for me?

Before committing to a 40 hour work week, how will you know if you will like the career path you have chosen? If you commit to a job for the summer, just to earn some money, will this job help you in a future career path?

Michigan State University Extension recommends choosing summer employment that helps youth gain knowledge of a job that will make it easier when deciding about their future career.

Internships can last a summer or an entire school semester. They can be full time, part time, a few hours, paid or unpaid, or count as a class credit. The main reason for participating in the internship is to focus on learning the job and gaining on-the-job experience.

Similar to an internship is student teaching. Student teachers learn while getting the real experience of being in a classroom setting with the guidance of a teacher.

Job shadowing is sometimes offered in high school. Check with local businesses to see if they would be willing to have you come in after school and job shadow for a couple hours each week. This will give you a chance to see if that is the kind of job you would like to do and be willing to get training or go to college for.

Internships can better prepare you for a future job. Perhaps more importantly, it can help with decision making in your career choice.

In addition to your school guidance counselor helping you find an internship, an online website to further explore the benefits of internships and job shadowing is also available.

Michigan 4-H offers many opportunities in career exploration and workforce preparation to help youth look at internships as well.

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