Start with the end goal in mind! For some students the best place to start is at the end. Often students are unsure which course to take because they are not sure which course they will need to gain admission to college, university, or an apprenticeship.

Pathways offers unique opportunities for personal development and professional growth to people of all walks of life. Regardless of your age, background, education attainment, or professional experience, Pathways can help you take the next significant step in your life. In your quest for constant progress and growth, Pathways is one of the most useful resources you could have access to.

With the immense wealth of resources provided by Pathways, the next important phase of your life can be within reach. This phase could include Apprenticeship, College, University, or Work.

How does it work?

Pathways espouses a 4-step approach that can help anyone meet their goals for personal and professional growth and development.

  1. The first step involves self-assessment and analysis of personal strengths and areas of improvement. This is a crucial first step in the Pathways process that prepares the individual for the second stage.
  2. The second step is exploring opportunities. In this step, the individual gets essential information on potentially valuable opportunities for education, training, self improvement, and career advancement. This stage also helps the individual identify opportunities for developing specific work or life related skills.
  3. The third step, building pathways, is in many ways the core of the Pathways approach. This enables the individual to lay the groundwork for exploring potential growth and development paths identified during the previous step. This is where the real work begins, and the contacts and networks developed during this stage will prove essential later on.
  4. The fourth stage involves gaining actual experience. This is where it all comes together: all the work put in, the information gathered, and the networks developed. It is during this stage that the individual gets real-world experience that will be relevant toward the achievement of his or her goals.

Pathways offers a one-stop portal for a comprehensive range of resources that will be beneficial for anyone who is looking to learn a specific skill, explore opportunities for further education or career advancement, or simply interested in personal growth and development.

The following Pathways are available at WDHS:

Co-operative Education (Co-op)

What is it?

A program that allows students to apply two co-op credits towards their compulsory high school graduation requirements, with no limit on earning optional co-op credits.

Who is it for?

Students who are heading for university, college, apprenticeship or the workplace.

What are the benefits?

Students have the opportunity to:

  • Experience hands-on learning
  • "Test-drive" career options
  • See the relevance of their classroom learning
  • Develop the essential skills and habits required in the workplace
  • Gain valuable work experience to help build a resumé for postsecondary programs and future employment

For more information, download the Grand Erie Co-op Sheet or download the Ministry of Education's Co-op Fact Sheet. Interested in applying? Come see Guidance!!

Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP)

OYAP enables full-time students who are 16 years of age or older with at least 16 credits to meet diploma requirements while participating in an occupation that requires on-the-job training.

The OYAP program is designed to increase the number of secondary students interested in exploring the trades and prepares them to successfully pursue careers in the trades. Students in Grades 11 or 12 can gain training, through a cooperative education program, in an apprenticeship trade of interest.

To be eligible for OYAP, students must:

  • be enrolled full-time in secondary school
  • be working towards an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD)
  • be enrolled in a cooperative education program with a placement in an apprenticeship trade
  • have successfully completed 16 credits
  • be at least 16 years of age

Check out OYAP's website for additional resources and information about how taking OYAP could be right for you!

Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM)

Waterford District High School offers three Specialist High Skills Majors, Ministry of Education approved programs that allow students the opportunity to gain an overview of different industries as well as receive specialized training while meeting the requirements of the Ontario Secondary School Diploma.

Students will participate in classroom learning, gain hands-on experience, and off-site experiential co-operative learning as they establish network relationships with many post-secondary institutions and employers in their appropriate sector.

WDHS students can explore the Construction Program, Health and Wellness Program and Business Program in and out of the classroom.

For an overview of each program, download the flyers below:


Health and Wellness