High schools run rampant with aspiring dot-com billionaires and would-be pro athletes who will get a rude reality check in a few years. If you're proud of your work and processes and are interested in introducing students to careers that they can realistically get excited about, consider job shadowing.
A low-key way to introduce career options to the next-generation workforce, job shadowing involves letting a young person “shadow” a professional or company for a few hours or a day, learning about the work performed, the skills and education needed, the hours and responsibilities, and the kind of money that might be made.
Remodeling job shadows can be particularly engaging — and eye-opening — for kids who enjoy working with their hands but have had little exposure to the building trades.
Around a million students will do some job shadowing with 100,000 businesses in 2008, according to Job Shadowing 2008, a joint initiative of government and nonprofit agencies. Ed Grocholski, a spokesman for the initiative, suggests that remodelers join forces with local peers to create job-shadowing programs through their local schools.
Or just call your local high school to enlist the help of teachers or counselors in setting up shadowing opportunities. You can also download a free how-to guide at www.jobshadow.org.