/ Boerigter Center for Calling and Career

DiscoverWork Program

Gain a realistic, first-hand perspective of day-to-day work life in various fields as you explore possible internships or careers.

DiscoverWork connects you with alumni, friends or employer partners of Hope College who share their career experiences, lessons learned and professional tips for landing a job or internship in their industries.

These short-term, unpaid opportunities to meet with or shadow professionals are different from an internship. They typically last 1–2 days, but may last longer.

These opportunities take place all over the United States and are offered between December 2018 and May 2019. The DiscoverWork program is not for academic credit and students are not compensated.


Although DiscoverWork opportunities are not guaranteed, we encourage all Hope College students to apply! We recommend that you apply for more than one opportunity; however, you must only apply for opportunities that you are willing and able to complete. By applying, you are committing to participate in that particular opportunity if you are matched with the host. Withdrawing from the program after you’ve been matched is strongly discouraged.

You do not have to have experience to participate. This program is designed for students to explore fields and careers that they are interested in; therefore, you do not have to have experience to qualify. If you are not placed the first time around, please be sure to apply for future opportunities.

  • Attend company staff meetings
  • Assist with projects or complete office tasks
  • Conduct informational interviews with staff members
  • Observe client interactions and the functions and duties of a particular career
  • Tour the facilities
  • Review organization’s mission/vision statement and organizational charts
  • Understand office policies and procedures
  • Review current trends in the profession
  • Explore potential career paths within the organization and the profession
  • Meet with key players of the organization
2018–2019 Timeline
Tuesday, September 4 Deadline for host registration
Wednesday, September 26 Opportunities posted for students
Thursday, October 18, by noon Deadline to apply
Friday, October 26 Students are notified if they are matched
Between December 2018 and May 2019 DiscoverWork opportunities take place!
  • Fill out DiscoverWork application
  • Email/submit a one–two paragraph “letter of interest” which tells the host/matching supervisor why you are interested in a particular opportunity (see criteria below). You will submit a letter of interest for each opportunity you apply for.
  • Letters of interest will be judged based on professional tone, clarity of argument, level of expressed interest in the host's field and the DiscoverWork program’s potential benefit to you. To increase your chances of getting your preferred choice, we strongly advise that you have your letter reviewed.

The letter of interest must contain the following:

  1. Why are you interested in the DiscoverWork opportunity?
  2. What do you expect to gain from this experience?
  3. Why did you choose this particular opportunity and location?

All documents will be submitted to discoverwork@hope.edu (Boerigter Center) with subject line: DW Program (your last name). Documents will be sent to hosts as well.

Transportation, Housing and Financial Considerations
Students assume all costs for program participation, including transportation to and from the DiscoverWork site, accommodations and meals. Some hosts are willing to let a student stay in their home; this will be indicated in their description. However, scholarships may be available to assist with program costs. Please take all of these areas into consideration when applying for specific opportunities.
Host Information

Serving as a DiscoverWork host gives you a unique opportunity to connect with current Hope College students and influence their career development and discernment in a real way. You have a chance to meet potential new talent for future summer interns and full-time employees and increase the exposure of your company and career field/industry.

You must work in a place of business to participate. Students cannot shadow hosts in a private home office. We do not offer international opportunities at this time.

The number of students you host is up to you. (Please indicate your preference on the registration form.) Because the opportunity is available from December–May, hosts may choose to host one student in the winter and one in the spring.

Because the number of hosts and student applicants varies each year we cannot always guarantee a match but do our best to provide opportunities for hosts to participate in the DiscoverWork program.

Housing Host

A housing host is an alumni or friend of the college that wants to allow a student to stay in his/her home while they participate in their DiscoverWork opportunity to help with housing costs. Students will not go with the housing host to their place of work.

If you're interested in hosting a student, please contact Megan Scheldt in the Boerigter Center with any questions.