Skip to content Skip to main navigation Report an accessibility issue

Big Orange Shadowing Program Host FAQ

Big Orange Shadow Logo

This program is on pause for Winter 2024. If you are interested in being a host in the future, please contact Mary Beth Woodward.

Who is eligible to participate?

  • We are seeking Memphis, Nashville, Knoxville, and Chattanooga-area UT alumni, parent sponsors, community members, and employer partners to host first- or second-year students at their professional organizations during the week of January 9th -13th, 2023. We preference on site shadowing opportunities, but virtual ones may be considered for out of state opportunities.

How do I apply to participate as a host?

  • You may complete our short interest form. The host job shadow submission period will be open until November 4th, 2022. Job shadowing schedule outlines are due by December 7th, 2022.

Why should I host a student for a job shadowing opportunity?

  • Job shadowing benefits both the student and the host employer. As a host, this is a potential opportunity to expose students to your industry and/or organization. Many of the students selected are first and second years who are still exploring career opportunities; you have a chance help influence their career trajectory! For employer hosts, this translates to a great recruiting opportunity. For alumni and family hosts, it is a chance to give back to UT and educate the next generation on your industry.

What is the matching process?

  • The registration process asks you to indicate your industry/job function, a few characteristics about your organization, and the professional skills relevant to your work.
  • After submitting your shadow opportunity, our team will review the required fields. Upon approval, your shadow opportunity will be available for students to apply to during the Application Submission Period. The student application requests students’ career interests and shares expectations for shadowing.
  • The Center for Career Development & Academic Exploration will review applications and determine best matches between student applicants and sponsors/hosts. Matching is not guaranteed and is primarily based on areas of interest and geographic location – although we make every effort to connect students with sponsors/hosts, please be advised that we do not always have a student participant to match every sponsor/host.
  • You will be notified of your matching status in early December and, if a match is made, you will be provided with information about the student you will be hosting.

What would be my responsibilities as a host?

  • You are responsible for creating a schedule for the shadow opportunity and introducing the student to the various facets of your profession. The schedule can include showing them what a typical day at your job consists of, a tour of the organization, attending meetings, a networking lunch with staff, and/or answering questions about your career field and work environment. Please keep in mind that the Big Orange Shadowing Program is meant to be a learning opportunity and a chance for our students to gain valuable exposure to potential career fields of interest and work environments, while also an opportunity for you to showcase your organization and introduce students to your industry. Please see the Host Guidelines and Sample Agendas for ideas on how to structure your shadow opportunity.
  • You will NOT be required to provide transportation, food, compensation, or any overnight accommodation for students, but may do so if you choose.

When and how long are the job shadows?

  • The job shadows take place during the week of January 9th -13th and are typically 5-8 hours.

Can I host more than one student? 

  • Certainly! We welcome employers to host more than one student if the job shadow schedule and structure permit multiple students to experience the opportunity.

The date for UT’s Shadow program do not work with my schedule. Can I host a student another day?

  • If you wish to provide a shadowing opportunity outside the dates of our program, you are encouraged to reach out to Mary Beth Woodward to discuss options.