Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM)

An SHSM is a ministry-approved specialized program that allows students to focus their learning on a specific economic sector while meeting the requirements to graduate from secondary school. It also assists in their transition after graduation to apprenticeship training, college, university or the workplace. 


The SHSMs that are available at St. Joseph’s are in the following sectors: 

  • Arts and Culture – Musical Theatre – Lead Teachers: Mrs. Clarke & Mr. Karahalios
  • Health and Wellness – Healthcare – Lead Teacher: Mrs. Laframboise 
  • Hospitality and Tourism – Lead Teacher: Mr. Cherevaty
  • Agriculture - 

Key Benefits of a Specialist High Skills Major Pursuing an SHSM helps students to: 

  • Customize their secondary school education to suit their interests and talents. 
  • Develop specialized knowledge and skills.
  • Earn credits that postsecondary educational institutions and the sector recognize. 
  • Gain sector-recognized certification and career-relevant training. 
  • Develop essential skills and work habits documented through the Ontario Skills Passport.
  • Identify, explore and refine career goals and make informed decisions about their future. 
  • Remain flexible, with the option to shift between pathways, should their goals and plans change.