This volunteer initiative for alumni and friends of the University is to offer students a “day in the life” shadowing opportunity designed to discover more about the work world, different types of organizations, and to explore potential career paths by interacting with professionals that guide the experience. Over the last three years, alumni and friends of the University from all over the region have hosted Longwood students at their place of business as a part of our Work Shadow program.

Due to COVID-19 and concerns around social distancing, this year we're recruiting professionals willing to offer a Virtual Work Shadow experience. Rather than asking volunteers to host a student or group of students a full day of shadowing, we're looking for professionals willing to coordinate two - three hours worth of sequential meetings, informal chats, and/or information sessions. Volunteer hosts will still guide the experience, just more condensed and conducted virtually.

More Information About Work Shadow

Why shadow?

The intent of this program is to provide you with a meaningful experience by connecting you with a fellow Lancer who is currently employed in a role or industry that is relevant to your career goals. This opportunity can be a great way for you to ask questions and receive advice, gain insight and enhance skills.

Shadowing can help students:

  • Clarify career aspirations and professional goals
  • Explore a certain career more in depth
  • Experience the professional environment first hand
  • Connect with professionals in the field
  • Develop network skills
  • Decide whether that industry is the best fit for them or not
  • Determine where their citizen leadership qualities fit best

Why host?

By connecting one or more students with you, they will have a chance to see a “day in the life” in a field of interest through your eyes while also gaining meaningful professional development experience. You’ll also be giving back to our alma mater in a new and impactful way!

The intent of this program is to help students:

  • Learn more about a career field
  • Determine if this is the field for them
  • Learn professional etiquette
  • Increase networking skills and gain professional contacts

"Hosting a student from my alma mater was an excellent experience and a testament to how Longwood is preparing students to be citizen leaders. My student was insightful, intelligent, and very eager to glean from my experience and that of my staff. She was well prepared to network and gain insights into the field that I work in. I would host another work shadow student tomorrow!"

- Eric Fehr, Class of 2010, Director of Student Life at Liberty University

What would a shadowing day would look like?

After you are matched with a student, we will share tips and tricks on how to make the most of your virtual work shadow experience. While every industry is different, here are some ideas to build out your itinerary:

  • Designate time to discuss your journey from Longwood to your current role
  • Review of the student's resume and/or cover letter
  • Plan a meeting on a major project that relates to the student's career interests
  • Work through a case study together
  • Connect the student to other professionals that may offer insight on job paths


2022-2023 Timeline

September: Registration opens for Students

October: Registration opens for Alumni and Professionals

Mid-November: Matches are finalized

Late November: Student Work Shadow training

Work Shadow Dates: December and January dates are currently in the works and will be finalized by the time registration opens in September.

Frequently Asked Questions

How does matching professionals and students work?

  • When students sign up, we collect information on major, field of interest, career goals, and plans after graduation. We then compare their responses to professional opportunities. After a match is made, we will send you an email with the name and contact information for your student match and also provide a few recommendations on how to move forward. Once the student has completed their work shadow prep course they will reach out to you to receive instruction from you in regard to how the shadow day will proceed.

How much of a time commitment is job shadowing?

  • The time commitment is limited to just a few hours, plus a little preparation time. We do request that professionals share a proposed itinerary to your match ahead of time so students can be appropriately prepared.

Am I guaranteed a match after applying?

  • We cannot always guarantee a match; however, we do our best to connect as many work shadow opportunities as possible.

Sample Schedules

Schedule One

9:00 am Introductions

10:00 am Office/Team wide meeting

11:00 am Presentation to stakeholders or team

12:15 pm Alumni Q&A with other Alumni at the company


Schedule Two

8:30 am Introductions

9:00 am Office/Team wide meeting

9:30 am One-on-One with colleagues

10:30 am “Shadow” on calls, emails and observe daily business 

Noon Lunch Wrap up and resume feedback, Q&A and debrief



"It really impressed me how invested the alumni was in my experience for just a single day at her agency. I feel very fortunate to have been able to make great connections, learn from people who have decades of experience in my field, and to hear various opinions on issues important to me."

-Joseph Siverd '15, Masters of Science in Counselor Education '18