Colleges Try to Keep Up With Demand for Pot-Trained Graduates

It used to that many college students spent a great deal of time studying cannabis, even though it was not on any curriculum. 

Times have changed. Since marijuana is legal for medical purposes in 33 states in this country and as a recreational drug in 10 others, a growing number of public and private educational institutions, are offering its study in some of their courses of study. 

According to a CBS Philly TV report in Philadelphia, with a contribution from the Associated Press, almost a dozen U.S. institutions are either offering majors, minors or some type of course related to the cannabis industry, even though marijuana still is federally illegal. However, last year’s federal farm bill widespread most legal hemp growing. 

While it’s difficult to estimate exactly how much revenue can be generated in a state from cannabis product sales, since much production still is done illegally, experts say about half a million good-paying jobs will need to be filled in the next few years in that industry. 

Many graduates will be trained to work as analysts in the growing number of labs needed to test cannabis. 

The UCLA Cannabis Research Initiative bills itself as one of the first academic programs in the world dedicated to the study of cannabis, according to its website. It has studied cannabis health risks as well as therapeutic values. 

The broadcast report from CBS Philly noted that a new four-year degree program is under way in medicinal plant chemistry at Northern Michigan University.  

The report also said, “Colorado State University offers a cannabis studies minor focusing on social, legal, political and health impacts. Ohio State University, Harvard, the University of Denver and Vanderbilt offer classes on marijuana policy and law.” 

CBS Philly said, “Stockton University in New Jersey began an interdisciplinary cannabis minor last fall and now has an academic partnership with Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia that gives students the opportunity for internships and research work in medical marijuana and hemp.” 

The University of Connecticut is starting a cannabis horticulture program soon, and a similar program is being launched at Minot State University in North Dakota. 

This interesting because marijuana still is illegal in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, where schools appear to be ready to offer classes on pot when it I legalized in those three states. 

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