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Packer Weekly: West Fargo High School students have an opportunity through the Career Center

Senior Hanna Nelson plans to pursue a career in nursing. Special to the Pioneer.

West Fargo High School students have an opportunity through the Career Center called job shadowing. It gives students opportunities to observe and experience careers they are interested in possibly joining. Senior Hannah Nelson has job shadowed this year in nursing as a certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA), certified nursing assistant (CNA) and as an anesthetist.

She has been getting up early to job shadow between 6 and 7 a.m. She observes and helps with different medical procedures. Nelson has even watched an eye surgeon harvest a cornea for transplant.

"I enjoy enjoy shadowing because you may be going somewhere to observe one job, but then you get to observe other positions while you're there," Nelson said. "When I was observing the CRNA I also got to look through a microscope and watch an eye surgeon harvest a cornea for transplant."

Nelson said she feels good knowing this opportunity that she can watch her future career in action with professionals in the field she hopes to join.

"Seeing it all up close is something that can actually change your perspective on some professions," Nelson said. "Of course many people have seen nurses in the hospital or clinic, but there's so much more that happens behind the scenes that you wouldn't see unless you shadow a nurse or doctor for the day."

WFHS Career adviser Lori Dauner said job shadowing can help students observe and experience first-hand what it is like to work in the career of their choice. She also said the Career Center encourages students to complete a job shadow at least once during their high school years.

"The benefits include allowing a student to see 'a day in the life' of a professional in the career first-hand. In addition, the student is able to learn more about the environment of the profession and observe their daily tasks," Dauner said.

"I would definitely recommend job shadowing," Nelson said. "It's extremely helpful if you are unsure of what careers interest you or if you're on the fence about what you want to major in in college."

Senior Nikki Schreiner, a friend of Nelson's, believes that job shadowing has helped Nelson decide on her future career.

"Hanna is a very motivated person and I'm so proud of all of the clubs and sports she is involved in because I truly think it is helping her step in the right direction for college," Schreiner said.

Overall, job shadowing has helped Nelson reaffirm and strengthen her confidence in becoming a nurse.

"Job shadowing has helped me decide what I want to do in my future," Nelson said. "It was one of the factors that helped me know I wanted to pursue nursing."

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