Overview, Program Goals and Benefits
In January, all members of the junior class participate in Junior Work Week, an opportunity for students to explore a career or specific job of interest. During the process, which is a graduation requirement, students learn about what makes the world work, and about themselves.
The goals of the program are for students to:
- gain insight into the day-to-day activities of a job within a field of interest,
- understand how the job fits into the overall operation of the organization, and
- learn about the education and experience requirements for the position.
The benefits of the experience are far reaching because the student:
- will go through the process of deciding on and securing a position of interest.
- will get hands-on experience in a career of interest - what's really involved in the "dream job"?
- can draw upon this experience as he or she begins the college application process in their senior year.
At the end of Junior Work Week, every student is required to submit a detailed journal in which they recount their hour-by-hour duties, responses and reactions, interviews with employees on the job, and a final analysis of the week's experience. In addition to providing juniors with the opportunity to explore and, perhaps, discover a path of interest, for some, the week-long experience has led to summer internships and other future opportunities.
A Student Perspective ...
"For my Junior Work Week, I interned under the direction of Professor Bryan Hooten at the VCU Department of Music. During my internship, I observed Professor Hooten instruct various music theory classes as well as direct the VCU Small Jazz Ensemble I. In addition, I also assisted Professor Hooten in preparing the release of a new full-length album by his band, Ombak. Over the course of the week, I learned the many priorities Professor Hooten has to balance as a composer, musician, recording artist, instructor and performer and also the numerous responsibilities required in his field. I also learned the great importance of supporting your community and the culture around you as well as how to dance to salsa music (in case of an emergency). Overall, I found my internship with Professor Hooten to be extremely informative about music and the way that music works and I certainly enjoyed the experience."
Tyler Wall '10
Junior Work Week Forms and Documents for Class of 2015