Junior Achievement Job Shadow offers students a unique opportunity: a visit to a professional work environment to gain insights into how to find and keep a fulfilling career.
Junior Achievement of Southwest New England recently hosted one of its most popular annual job shadows, a visit to the Microsoft store at Westfarms Mall. During the visit, Microsoft staff provided a mini-lecture for thirteen Enfield High School students who were able to learn about the history of Microsoft, technology, and career paths at the technology giant and their retail stores across the country.
The Junior Achievement Job Shadow, recommended for high school students, is composed of three 45-minute classroom sessions and a job shadow visit, which is typically 3-5 hours in length. Microsoft has been partnering with Junior Achievement since 2014, among numerous Connecticut businesses that offer similar experiences for students through JA.
“Our job shadow program really helps high school students get a glimpse into fields they may be considering, and opens up new career possibilities for them,” said Jeremy Race, President and CEO of JA of Southwest New England. “The program offers a hands-on experience that many high school students might not otherwise receive.”
Junior Achievement’s Microsoft Job Shadow demonstrates the array of opportunities available in the world of tech, from coding to gaming to virtual reality, and focuses on the soft skills needed to succeed in an environment like Microsoft, from the store to the corporate level.
Students participating in the program acquire and apply the skills needed in demanding and ever-changing workplaces. Students are able to recognize career clusters and potential job positions; understand the importance of researching the requirements needed to earn a position; and develop job-hunting tools, such as networking, resumes, and interviewing skills.
Junior Achievement is planning nearly two dozen additional job shadow programs at Microsoft for Connecticut students during the current school year, along with 25 additional job shadows throughout the state.
Junior Achievement – celebrating its 100th anniversary this year – is the world’s largest organization dedicated to giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success, plan for their future, and make smart academic and economic choices.
Last school year in Connecticut, with the help of more than 3,300 volunteers – business professionals, parents, retirees, and college students – JA of Southwest New England taught more than 47,000 Connecticut students about business, jobs, and the importance of education for success.
In 2019, Junior Achievement of Southwest New England was awarded one of Junior Achievement USA’s highest honors for the fourth consecutive year: the Five Star Award, in recognition of its growth in student impact and superior fiscal performance.
Enfield High School students at the Microsoft store at Westfarms Mall in Farmington on October 28, 2019, participating in the Junior Achievement Job Shadow program.