June 23 - Updated Information

(For the background information click here)

Dear HSHA/SSM alumni:

After two months of back-and-forth negotiating, CAMTC has agreed to relax some of the restrictions of the new policy submitted to us in February of 2016. The main concession is that applications for the 500 hour CMT certificate with training hours from the School of Shiatsu and Massage or Harbin School of Healing Arts do NOT have to be received on or before June 30, 2016 DECEMBER 30, 2016 in order for those hours to be considered.

CAMTC is willing to extend the amount of time applicants have to submit the application AND pursue completion of the 500 hours necessary for a CMT (but only from newly-approved schools).

Essentially, it boils down to TWO options:

  • ONE: Submit at least the CMT application and fee to CAMTC by June 30, 2016, DECEMBER 30, 2016 and your application will be processed as normal, with all Harbin massage school training hours intact and valid toward the 500 hours needed for the CMT. From that point, you have ONE YEAR to complete the rest of the process (school transcripts, LiveScan, background check, take and pass the MBLEx, etc.). If you have LESS than 500 total training hours, you have ONE YEAR to also complete those hours, ONLY at newly-approved schools.

  • TWO: Submit the CMT application and fee to CAMTC on July 1, 2016 DECEMBER 30, 2016 or after, and your application will be held until:
    • a. Harbin re-opens, gets School Approval from CAMTC. At that point, all your Harbin training hours from the past will be made eligible, and your application can be processed by CAMTC.
    • b. You complete the 500 hours needed for the CMT at any other CAMTC-Approved School. CAMTC will hold onto your application during this time, as long as Harbin is still rebuilding and NOT holding classes.
    • c. In the unlikely event that Harbin either decides NOT to resume the school, or CAMTC denies School Approval after re-opening, Harbin applicants would have ONE YEAR from that event to complete their 500 hours of training toward the CMT at a CAMTC-Approved School. Harbin will also have the option of officially closing the school permanently and finding a CAMTC-Approved school to become the Custodian of Records, making ALL previous training hours from Harbin eligible for CMT application via that school.

So regardless of the outcome, we’ve made sure that your training hours will always count toward a CAMTC certificate.


CAMTC is offering more time to apply for the CMT certificate with Harbin training hours, and will not invalidate those hours even if you apply after the June 30, 2016 DECEMBER 30, 2016 deadline.


Sort of. Because applications can be received AFTER June 30, 2016 DECEMBER 30, 2016 by CAMTC, this makes the NEW deadline very uncertain – because it depends not only on WHEN the Harbin school is re-opened, but also IF/WHEN it is APPROVED BY CAMTC. All of our application materials for School Approval were submitted over a year ago to CAMTC, and we were very confident that they would be accepted. Our school was simply waiting for a Site Visit by a CAMTC representative, to complete the process. When we’re able to resume classes in a temporary or permanent space, that space and the school overall will still need to submit to a Site Visit from CAMTC and some of the application materials will likely need to be changed.


At a minimum, it would take the Harbin school at least one year from now before it re-opens, even if in a temporary space. If Harbin builds a permanent new space for the school, that may take 2-3 years. After either scenario, it may take another 3-6 months for CAMTC to conduct a Site Visit and give the Harbin school Approved status.

The exact wording from CAMTC:

For students to have applied by June 30, the application and payment need to be received by our office in Sacramento by June 30 (not postmarked). The office does not accept walk-ins, so students should mail well in advance of June 30 DECEMBER 30, 2016 and we always recommend mailing with some sort of tracking confirmation.

Any education received before June 30 DECEMBER 30, 2016 will be considered under current rules as it has been. This is particularly important for applicants applying with education from closed schools that do not have an approved school as a custodian of record. The applicant will then have a year to complete any incomplete portions of their application - e.g., passing the MBLEx, transcripts from the school (the transcript doesn’t have to be sent prior to June 30 DECEMBER 30, 2016 but the education must be completed by then), Livescan, any additional hours from an approved school needed for certification, etc.

Harbin students fall into a different category because Harbin’s [School Approval] application will be on hold until a final decision is made. There are likely many individual scenarios to consider, but here is a broad generalization:

For Harbin applicants received by June 30, 2016 DECEMBER 30, 2016

  • If they have 500 hours, then they can proceed through the application process normally.
  • If they have less than 500 hours, then they have at least a year or when a final decision is made regarding Harbin, whichever is longer, to complete the remaining hours at an approved school.

For Harbin applications received on or after July 1, 2016 DECEMBER 30, 2016
  • Those applications will be held until a final decision is made regarding Harbin.
    • Students can wait for a final decision on Harbin and continue their studies there if approved. In this case, hours from Harbin, regardless of before or after July 1, 2016 DECEMBER 30, 2016, will be accepted. On the other hand, if Harbin is ultimately denied or does not continue to pursue approval, then those hours likely would not be accepted and applicants would be given a year from that time to finish remaining hours at an approved school.
    • Students can opt to acquire 500 hours at an approved school any time while their application is on hold, which is at least a year or when a final decision is made regarding Harbin, whichever is longer.

    • (For the background information click here)