Students often want experience in potential careers before making decisions about their future. Through Spider Shadowing, a program now in its third cycle, alumni and others are offering them that chance.

Marius Young, ’18, got a firsthand glimpse of how a local government audit unfolds at Richmond’s City Hall by shadowing Jack Reagan, B’89, during the program’s first year.

“I learned how most professional meetings are run, both in person and conference calls,” Young said. “I learned the basics of an audit, and that was also something that was nice to get my hands on.”

Young may have no intention of becoming an auditor, but the experience, he said, was valuable in seeing how people work on a day-to-day basis and in clarifying where he would like to gain additional experience.

“I think he got a perspective on some of the day-in, day-out responsibilities of the new professional that you can’t really get from textbooks,” said Reagan, his host. “When everybody thinks of politics, they think of the policies that get enacted. What this did was open his eyes to how it’s all funded.”

The Spider Shadowing program has been growing steadily with the support of alumni and involvement of students. Of the 114 employers who hosted students this winter, 113 of them were fellow Spiders. More than 350 students applied for shadowing opportunities provided over winter break.

For more information, contact Career Services at 804-289-8547 or visit; information about the program is under the “Employers” tab.