905-687-7301 34 Catherine Street, St. Catharines, ON L2R 5E7

What is a Specialist High Skills Major?

A Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) is a Ministry of Education approved program that allows students to focus their learning on a specific economic sector, while meeting the requirement of the Ontario Secondary School Diploma. The program also assists students in their transition from secondary school to apprenticeship training, college, university or the workplace. An SHSM enables students to gain sector specific skills and knowledge.

St. Catharines Collegiate has been approved by the Ministry of Education to offer the Hospitality and Tourism SHSM.

Profile of the Hospitality and Tourism Sector

The tourism industry presents many advantages for employees because it offers a selection of well over 400 occupations. Tourism jobs also tend to provide plenty of opportunities for advancement, widely transferable skills, and ongoing training.

The tourism industry is divided into five sub-sectors:

  • hospitality and tourism
  • accommodation
  • food and beverage services
  • recreation
  • travel services

Tourism industries are an important employment sector in Canada. In 2009, this sector accounted for 1.6 million jobs, representing 9.4 per cent of the 17.1 million jobs in Canada.2 Between now and 2025, spending on tourism goods and services in Canada is expected to grow to $201 billion, and it is estimated that 219,000 tourism jobs will go unfilled due in part to declining birth rates and an aging workforce.

What will students in the Hospitality and Tourism major study?

A bundle of nine Grade 11 and Grade 12 credits in which students earn:

  • Four hospitality and tourism major credits

  • One English credit, a math credit and one credit of either science or business studies tailored to include units focused on hospitality and tourism

- Two cooperative education credits to gain workplace experience that enables students to refine, extend and practice sector-specific knowledge and skills

-Experiential learning, career exploration and reach ahead activities within the sector

-Certifications and training programs/courses in first aid, CPR and hazardous materials 

-Essential Skills and work habits required in the sector

What are the future career paths for hospitality and tourism?

For Hospitality and Tourism majors, possible careers include:

  • Apprenticeship – baker, cook, chef, special events coordinator
  • College – flight attendant, food service manager
  • University – nutritionist, dietician, hotel/resort manager
  • Entry level workplace – hotel valet, bartender