Getting Experience in Your Chosen Career Field

With any career, students can research what to expect in the workforce. What’s it like to save lives in the ER, work 60 plus hours during tax season, or lose your mind because your students are extra rowdy on a Friday? You will never know how these things will affect you or if your career path is truly your passion until you jump right in and try it out. This is why internships and job shadowing are a vital part of ensuring the path you’re on is right for you.

You’ll never know until you try

Med students may think because they pulled all-nighters in college cramming for exams that they’ll be able to handle the graveyard shift in the ICU. However, until someone has experienced the effect of sleep deprivation along with the emotional wear and tear they will never know if that pathway is right for them.

Job shadowing

Job shadowing is such an easy way to get real life experience and you’ll get the eye-opening perspective of an individual in the field. There can be endless opportunities for job shadowing; you just have to ask someone you know in the field or call a local business in your area.


Internships are a little harder to come by as you usually have to apply and companies will only have limited openings. However, they are one of the most insightful experiences you can get as well as a great way to network and meet people in the field. Additionally, if an internship is not something attainable for you for some reason, you should look into getting a part-time position in the field, even if it is not where you want to end up. You still can see some of the ins and outs of how a company is run and get your feet wet.

Overall, real-world experience is such an important thing for you to obtain before entering the workforce completely. Until you actively participate in an activity or job you will not completely know if that field is for you. So, go out and find something that shows you what your dream job may look like.

Pearson Students: Has an internship or job shadowing experience changed or reinforced your chosen career field? Share your thoughts in the comments below!



Calli Jansen is a Pearson Campus Ambassador at Michigan State University. She is pursuing a major in Business Management through the Broad College of Business. Calli enjoys working with the elderly and hopes to open an assisted living facility in the future. She also spends her free time watching Spartan football and basketball and cooking with her roommates.

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