Information for Shadowers-Professional Development Services - Carnegie Mellon University

Information for Shadowers

The Shadower is the individual engaged in observing a colleague and another department. Each participant may only shadow one individual and department per program cycle, and participants will be matched based on solicited rankings and a “first come, first served” pairing process.


This is a unique opportunity for Shadowers to be immersed in the work of another department, and gain and provide valuable insight. All Shadowers will be expected to:

  • Be aware of and adhere to program dates and deadlines.
  • Obtain permission to participate in the program from his or her supervisor.
  • Initiate outreach to his or her Host once paired to establish a timeline and meeting dates.
  • Share a summary of the experience with the Host and Hosting Department to articulate what was learned through the experience and provide feedback/insights.


Through the shadowing experience, Shadowers can:

  • Articulate the work and mission of another department, and how it fits into the institution’s mission
  • Gain valuable information about the position and department they shadow
  • Build relationships and strengthen their network throughout the campus community
  • Observe and build new professional skills to enhance their job performance
  • Have an opportunity to provide input and feedback to another department
  • Develop their career by exploring another field — or deepening their understanding of their own field
  • Learn best practices through the experience of another department