Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day invites kids to learn about parents’ jobs

The annual event - held April 27 this year - offers kids a glimpse into their parents’ life at the office and is being held both remotely and in person.

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MICHELLE LOHMANN/STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER (Left to right,) Nine-year-old Lena Vogel, 8-year-old Isabel Leckie, 9-year-old Caitlyn McLaughlin, 8-year-old Amy Yu and 8-year-old Gavin Cloherty disassemble a M2000 machine used to extract RNA and DNA during their visit to Abbott Molecular’s Take Our Children to Work Day. The company hosted 63 children ages 8 to 13.

Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day is taking place remotely and in-person this year across the country. This is the 31st year the national event has taken place.

Michelle Lohmann/File photo

Before the pandemic, WCF Events would host between 20 and 25 events for Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day each year.

Now, President Murrel Karsh said the Chicago-based event planning company hosts between one and four programs a year for the national event.

Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day is an annual event that offers kids a glimpse into their parents’ life at the office. It takes place on the fourth Thursday of April each year. This year, it’s happening April 27.

The program began in 1993 as Take Our Daughters to Work Day, an effort to educate girls about opportunities in the workforce. In 2003, it expanded to include boys.

“The point of it for all children is that you get to see in real life what adults do,” said Elisabeth Cappuyns, who is a director of the Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Foundation.

The pandemic caused numbers to decline and events to move online, Cappuyns said. She believes, though, the program has “bounced back.”

In 2020, some Chicago-area companies invited their employees to bring their children to work virtually. Although many offices have begun transitioning back to in-person workdays, Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day has retained a virtual component.

Thursday, the Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day Foundation will hold a virtual panel. Cappuyns said she thinks the virtual aspect has helped the program “reach a larger audience.”

WCF Events, a subsidiary of Windy City Fieldhouse, a sports complex on the Northwest Side, started doing events like virtual scavenger hunts for Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day during the pandemic. The company hosts team building, corporate and charitable events, primarily at Fortune 500 companies and large law firms, Karsh said.

This year, kids 18 and under commuting with their parents for Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day can travel for free on Metra trains.

Spokesman Michael Gillis said Metra is reintroducing free rides for kids on Take Your Daughters and Sons to Work Day for the first time since 2017. Metra thought it would be a “nice gesture” for working parents.

Typically, kids under 7 ride for free with an adult on Metra trains. Kids between 7 and 11, as well as students in high school and below, ride for a reduced rate.

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