Job shadow allows 4-H members to explore future careers

Job Shadow
Jetta and Josiah (right) Harvey of Beatrice spent a day job shadowing Mat Habrock, assistant director of the Nebraska Department of Agriculture, as part of a job shadowing experience through the Nebraska 4-H Foundation. (Photo: Molly Chapple, Nebraska 4-H Foundation)

March 28, 2018

Lincoln, Neb. — A new project from the Nebraska 4-H Foundation is giving teens involved in Nebraska 4-H the opportunity to explore their dream career fields. Through the “Learn by Doing” project, 4-H members get to live a day in the life of an industry professional.

Nebraska’s Assistant Director of Agriculture Mat Habrock was the first to host a job shadowing experience. Shadowing Habrock were Jetta Harvey, 16, and Josiah Harvey, 15, of Beatrice, Neb. Jetta dreams of becoming involved in law or medicine, while Josiah has a passion for agriculture engineering.

“Providing job shadowing experiences is a great opportunity for students to experience careers they are interested in first-hand. Students also get the opportunity to build a professional network and form important relationships that will be beneficial for their futures,” Habrock said. 

Not only did they learn how Habrock’s role serves Nebraska’s agricultural industry, the experience also offered the Harvey siblings insight into the inner workings of Nebraska’s Department of Agriculture. They were put to work brainstorming with Habrock and other department staff on new branding ideas for the state’s agricultural industry. .

“I never knew that the Department of Agriculture was a part of so many aspects of consumers' daily lives,” said Jetta.

 Jetta and Josiah also were able to meet Steve Wellman, director of Nebraska’s Department of Agriculture.

During a visit with Habrock to the Nebraska State Capitol, Jetta and Josiah had the opportunity to network with many individuals in influential positions within the state. During the visit they spoke with Senator Lydia Brasch, Senator Roy Baker and University of Nebraska President Hank Bounds. 

Through the Learn By Doing Program, 4-H'ers are matched with industry professionals based on their survey responses. The program is open to all teen 4-H'ers from across Nebraska. 4-H alumni are also encouraged to become a part of a 4-H youth’s story by hosting a job shadowing experience.

For more information about the Learn By Doing job shadow program, visit

Abby Durheim
Nebraska 4-H Foundation

Share to: