Healthcare Support Program

Caring For Our Future: Healthcare Support Services Program

As our population and workforce ages, the need for highly skilled healthcare employees has become paramount. In response to this need, the Healthcare Support Services Program is intended to provide career preparation for senior secondary students with an interest in pursuing a healthcare career. The program design enables students to gain the necessary knowledge, skills and behaviours they will need to participate in related cooperative education experiences in customer support services roles at a Hamilton Health Sciences (HHS) hospital site. Examples of customer support services roles include Environment Aide and Porter. This unique experiential learning opportunity is being offered in partnership with Hamilton Health Sciences as a four-credit school-work transition program. This program will be offered each semester.

Students Will Learn:

  • An overview of the health care industry;
  • Service excellence (including quality management, professionalism, confidentiality and communication skills);
  • Principles of infection control;
  • Body mechanics and waste management;
  • An overview of human anatomy & physiology, and basic medical terminology;
  • Health and safety issues in healthcare;
  • Healthcare career opportunities through interactions with a variety of healthcare professionals within the classroom and the local healthcare community

During this all-day semester-long program, students will have the opportunity to:

  • Earn 4 secondary school credits (two credits in Healthcare Support Services and two credits through Cooperative Education)
  • Spend the entire semester at Hamilton Health Sciences with a HWDSB teacher and a variety of healthcare workers within one of three acute care hospital sites; all in-class instruction will be held at Chedoke Hospital – Wilcox Building
  • Develop the skills necessary for success in a healthcare career
  • Make contact with the largest healthcare employer in the region
  • Receive certification in Healthcare Support Services endorsed by Hamilton Health Sciences and the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board upon successful completion of the program

Note: Program participants will not be attending Westmount for the semester.


Application Process:

  • You will need to complete the application process around mid-term the semester before you are timetabled for this program (e.g. November if applying for the Semester 2 program; April if applying for the Semester 1 program)
  • Obtain an application package from your Guidance Counselor or the Co-op teacher
  • The application package includes: student info sheet, student questionnaire, teacher reference, resume, transcript
  • Submit the completed package to your Guidance Counselor or the Co-op teacher to submit to HWDSB
  • Attend an interview

–       Wait to hear if you have been accepted to the program

Note: Applicants are often received on a first-come first-served basis. If the program is full, late applications will not be accepted. Submit your application early!