Retail and Hospitality Careers (Adult Special Education)

This full-time program prepares students who have an identified cognitive disability for work in the retail and hospitality industries. The program offers basic skill training while establishing effective customer relations and employee behaviours that are necessary for success as an entry-level worker. After completing the core skills courses, students will be streamed into a specialization of skills for either the retail or hospitality industry.
Program Status:
Accepting applications

Start Length Credentials Campus Part- or Full-time
Sep 9 months Certificate Downtown Full-time

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Apply Now

For more information or an application interview, please contact the Community and Career Education Department at 604.871.7000, ext. 8451 or email

Program Description

Program Description

Upon successful completion of the certificate students will be able to:

  1. Apply organizational and time management skills to meet the demands of the service industry.
  2. Apply FOODSAFE™ and worker safety principles consistently when working in a service industry workplace.
  3. Interact with customers, co-workers and supervisors in a polite and professional manner using appropriate workplace communication skills.
  4. Conduct themselves in a professional manner in the workplace, consistent with industry standards.
  5. Differentiate among a wide variety of workplace opportunities in retail and hospitality industry.
  6. Apply basic knowledge of the equipment and procedures in a service industry.
  7. Perform skills specific to industry in an independent and reliable manner.
  8. Accurately use knowledge of industry terms, products, principles and skills.
  9. Describe industry groups and customer profiles within industry sectors.

Students will be required to obtain a satisfactory Criminal Record Check (Vulnerable Sector Search) prior to the practicum placement with children and/or vulnerable adults. This will be managed by the department depending on practicum placement.

Admission Requirements

Admission Requirements


This program welcomes applications from Canadian citizens and permanent residents. Program options for international students can be found at VCC International.

As Vancouver Community College is a post-secondary institution committed to educating adult learners, applicants should be 16 years of age or older or a graduate of a secondary school.

Please note that you must submit official transcripts and educational documents to support your application; unfortunately, we cannot accept photocopies or fax versions.

Program Specific

Missing prerequisites? VCC offers courses in Adult Upgrading and English as an Additional Language to help you meet your goals.

Applicants are required to participate in two screening interviews. The first screening interview with the student services assistant for students with disabilities determines suitability for the program according to an admission checklist. If the student is successful in the first interview, they will participate in a second interview with program faculty. Interviews are documented and a checklist is used to determine eligibility.

Applicants may be asked to sign a release of information for documentation that may provide faculty with information to support the application.

Admissibility will be based on the following criteria:

  • Permission from the department
  • Diagnosis or history that identifies difficulty with learning
  • Comfort and tolerance of an alternative learning environment designed for students with disabilities
  • Previous careers exploration that supports training in the retail and hospitality sectors
  • Possess a Grade 5 reading level. If applicant does not have reading level documentation, an informal reading assessment will be administered to determine functional reading level.  Lesser qualified applicants will be considered with department approval
  • Ability and willingness to travel independently to the college and workplace
  • Emotional and medical stability. A checklist is used to document behaviours, emotional problems or medical conditions that could significantly impair learning or compromise the safety of the student and/or others
  • Independently manage own medication
  • Demonstrate appropriate personal hygiene and have the ability to independently attend to personal care needs
  • Willingness to work in the retail and/or hospitality sectors, and perform tasks in an efficient and timely manner
  • Ability to attend classroom and practicum on a full-time basis, as outlined in the course outline and calendar
  • Demonstrate the skills and willingness to perform program-related tasks with strength and endurance
  • Good finger and hand dexterity

Fees and Other costs

Application Fee $35
Tuition Fee $1,724.44
Student Union Fee $52.00
College Initiative Fee $100.00
U-Pass Fee $410.00
Other Costs Campus Resource Fee: $69.00
Graduation Fee: $40.00
Total = $2,395.23
Equipment/materials/textbooks and supplies are approximately $350 (this is an additional cost, which is NOT included in your cost of the program. The first day of class will be an orientation of the materials and supplies required. These items will be provided to students in their FIRST week of classes. Please do not make your cheque out in advance.

For book lists and prices, check Bookstore.

Fees are approximate and subject to change without notice. Students are responsible for any increase in fees if advanced payments are made. The application fee is non-refundable. Fees are refunded according to the refund policy. For further clarification, see withdrawals and refunds information page.

Info Sessions

Info Sessions

VCC’s Community and Career Education (CACE) Department offers adult special education programs and courses for students with disabilities.

Areas of study include career awareness and exploration, food service careers, retail and hospitality, computer applications, literacy, and numeracy.

Group tours are also welcome. To arrange please call 604-871-7000, ext. 8451.

Date Day Time Room Location
January 28, 2020 Tuesday 3 - 4 p.m. 522 Downtown
February 26, 2020 Wednesday 3 - 4 p.m. 522 Downtown
March 24, 2020 Tuesday 3 - 4 p.m. 522 Downtown

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Program Highlights

Course Schedule

Courses Schedule


Term 1

(REHC 0601) Student Success
course schedule schedule
1.0 credits  course outline
(REHC 0602) Workplace Skills
course schedule schedule
3.0 credits  course outline
(REHC 0603) Workplace Communication
course schedule schedule
3.0 credits  course outline
(REHC 0604) Health and Safety
course schedule schedule
2.0 credits  course outline
(REHC 0605) FOODSAFE Level 1
course schedule schedule
2.0 credits  course outline
(REHC 0606) Exploring the Options
course schedule schedule
5.0 credits  course outline
(REHC 0607) Retail Specialization
course schedule schedule
10.0 credits  course outline
(REHC 0608) Hospitality Specialization
course schedule schedule
10.0 credits  course outline
(REHC 0609) Practicum 1
course schedule schedule
2.0 credits  course outline
(REHC 0610) Practicum 2
course schedule schedule
5.0 credits  course outline
(REHC 0611) Practicum 3
course schedule schedule
5.0 credits  course outline