Specialist High Skills Major

What is a Specialist High Skills Major?

The Specialist High Skills Major is a Ministry approved program that lets students focus on a career path that matches their skills and interests.  The major is a bundle of 8-10 courses in the student's selected field.  At North Hastings High School, we have been approved for the Specialist High Skills Major in the Environment.

How will completion of a Specialist High Skills Major program be recognized?

Students who complete their Specialist High Skills Major receive a special designation on their secondary school diploma as well as a record of their achievement on their official transcript.

Advantages of Earning a Specialist High Skills Major in ENVIRONMENT

Canada is the second largest country in the world, with an area of almost 10 million square kilometres.  Although rich in natural resources, we are facing many issues related to the environment, including global warming, species at risk, air and water quality concerns, and resource depletion.  Employment in the environment sector has boomed in recent years and existing labour shortages in this sector are only expected to increase as regulations to meet Canada's goals regarding climate change, endangered species and source water protection among others, come into effect.  The SHSM Environment provides a wide variety of environment-based activities and research, as well as sector-specific certifications, directly related to careers in the environmental field.

Required Components for the Specialist High Skills Major


   4 major environment-related courses
   3 other required courses that include some environment-related expectations 
  2 co-operative education credits related to environment
7 sector-recognized certifications and/or training courses/programs (NOS and NERDS provide more than 7)
 experiential learning activities within the appropriate sector
"reach ahead" experiences connected with the student's post secondary pathway
development of Essential Skills and work habits required withing the appropriate sector, and use of the Ontario Skills Passport (OSP) for purposes of documentation.