Feb. 8, 2023 - Board Of Education Commissioners Approve Student Shadowing Program With St. Joseph’s University Medical Center

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Partnership between district and hospital will provide students opportunities to discover healthcare-related careers

PATERSON – Board of Education commissioners tonight approved a new partnership between Paterson Public Schools and St. Joseph’s University Medical Center that, starting on May 3rd,  will provide district high school students with opportunities to shadow a variety of professionals in healthcare-related fields.

“There is a whole lot more opportunity in the healthcare field than becoming a doctor or a nurse. That is what we want our students to discover through participating in this Shadowing Program,” said Superintendent of Schools Eileen F. Shafer. “I want to thank the Board Commissioners for supporting this initiative and St. Joseph’s University Medical Center President & CEO Kevin Slaven and Vice President Kenneth Morris, Jr. and everyone they work with for their partnership in making these valuable opportunities available to our students.”

“It is not uncommon for adolescents to be undecided about their future career choices. This Shadowing Program at our city’s largest healthcare facility can help students get closer to making their career choices,” said Board of Education President Nakima Redmon. “We on the Board of Education applaud this initiative that helps put students on a path to self-reliance and serving the community, and we encourage others like it with other entities in the City of Paterson.”

“What better way is there to learn about a job than to see an expert doing it,” says Kevin Slavin, President & CEO of St. Joseph’s Health.  “Job shadowing is an excellent opportunity to do just that, and St. Joseph’s is pleased to offer these experiences to area students as they consider the many career paths available in healthcare.”

The student shadowing program will be held in 8 to 10-week cycles that will allow a maximum of 10 students – 11th- and 12th-graders – to participate per cycle.  The program will be divided into two tracks: a college-bound track and a non-college-bound track. The college-bound track will expose students to fields including case management, social work, radiology, and respiratory care. The non-college-bound track will expose students to fields including security, food services, and patient services.

Students will participate for two hours a day and two days a week. High school guidance counselors will play a major role in the selection of students. A district coordinator will help recruit the students, schedule the sessions, and arrange transportation for the students to the hospital.

Students will not be paid for participating in the shadowing program. However, they will receive certificates of completion at the end of their service. Also, at the end of the 10 weeks, the hospital’s talent acquisition coordinator will notify guidance counselors of any open positions. Students who participate in the Shadowing Program will be granted interviews for any positions for which they are qualified.