Edison Job Corps Students Form Meaningful Relationships with Their Workforce Mentors

Article describes various job shadowing opportunities provided to students thorughout the month of February as part of the National Groundhog Job Shadow Day.

Edison, NJ, March 13, 2010 --(PR.com)-- Edison Job Corps Academy joined thousands of employees and students around the country who took part in the kickoff of the National Groundhog Job Shadow Day on Tuesday, February 2, 2010. Since 1996, this initiative to engage students in the world of work has paired student “shadows” with “workplace mentors” to introduce students to the workplace and demonstrate the connection between academics and careers. The goal of Groundhog Job Shadow day is to match more than one million young people with workplace mentors. On behalf of Job Corps, Edison Job Corps Academy joined national event sponsors and students, businesses, and community members in the Edison area not only on February 2, but throughout the month of February, in providing valuable experience to students.

Edison Job Corps Academy students were excited to job shadow not only the staff on center but also to participate in shadowing opportunities within the community. Employers such as Energy Solve; JFK Hartwyck at Edison Estates; Piscataway Township; Office of Congressman Pallone and Lance; New Brunswick One Stop Career Center, Hyatt Regency, and the Heldrich hotel in New Brunswick were among sites that made this great experience possible. Not only did students have an opportunity to learn information about each company but they also witnessed what it takes to be successful in a given industry. Workplace mentors shared valuable labor market information including occupation salary ranges, amount of training and education required as well as chances for advancement. Each employer has done an outstanding job to ensure that students gained a better outlook on career prospects within the industries for which they are pursuing their education.

Companies such as Hyatt Regency and the Heldrich hotels, both in New Brunswick, coordinated an amazing experience to showcase career choices in the hospitably industry. Students from A+/Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer, Culinary, Administration, Painting, Electrical and Facilities Maintenance programs had a chance to not only shadow, but also to practice acquired knowledge. The day ended with a scrumptious meal at both places.

Additionally, two students spend half a day at the Office of Congressman Pallone, shadowing his representative, Mr. Erik Wong, who has visited the academy in October of 2009. This is a second opportunity provided by Congressman Pallone and his staff. In the fall of 2009 an Edison Job Corps Academy student had the distinguished opportunity to shadow the Congressman and his staff at the DC office when Job Corps celebrated its 45th anniversary. Congressman Lance, who visited Edison Job Corps in September of 2009, also participated in the job shadowing event. Michelle and Crystal Caruso, two students who shadowed Congressman Lance and his staff for the day, enjoyed every minute of their experience. They had an opportunity to participate in the news conference in Summit, NJ during which Congressman Lance unveiled a legislation to support services such as mammograms, from being denied coverage by a group health plan or health insurance issuer as a result of federal guidelines. Michelle and Crystal also met with the Anti-Hunger Coalition and Community Food Bank of New Jersey in his Westfield District Office. Opportunities such as these increase students’ awareness about national issues and the needs of constituents.

Job Shadowing and work-based learning are important parts of the job corps experience and highly valued by the students. “I like how the staff were very helpful during my job shadowing, answering all my questions openly and honestly” said Sergio Collazzo, healthcare student who shadowed staff at the JFK Hartwyck at Edison Estates. “After spending a day with Mr. Quigley I have a new found appreciation for both him and his occupation” stated Devon DeFreitas, who shadowed the Edison.

National Groundhog Job Shadow Day provides a unique opportunity to make the world of work come alive for young people – and that’s what Job Corps is all about. Each year, Job Corps teaches approximately 63, 000 students the skills they need to start a long term career. Job Corps understands the importance of making the connection between center classrooms and employer workplaces. Job shadowing offers students another opportunity to do just that.

Edison Job Corps Academy
Monika Pankiewicz
732 777 7419