Legal weed is catalyzing changes in all sorts of areas, many of which operate tangentially to the primary, plant-touching industry. Increasingly, that includes education. More and more, students seeking a “higher” education can learn about cannabis as part of their university training. Most recently, University of Connecticut announced that it will offer a cannabis cultivation course during the spring 2019 semester.
Gerald Berkowitz, a professor of plant science, will teach “Horticulture of Cannabis: From Seed to Harvest.”
According to local news sources, the course will be an introductory level offering. As such, there will be no prerequisites. In theory, that should make the course open and accessible to a wide range of interested students.
As indicated in its title, the course will focus primarily on the cultivation side of things. Throughout the semester, Berkowitz plans to bring in a series of industry experts to talk about various aspects of growing weed in the legal market.
The course is the first of its kind offered at UConn. And administrators apparently decided to offer the course after getting “tremendous student demand” for academic training related to the legal cannabis industry.
From the sound of things, the course is allowable in Connecticut primarily because the state has a legal medical marijuana program.
There are reportedly just over 28,000 patients registered in the program. Similarly, there are nine medical marijuana dispensaries and four licensed producers in the state. And now, the state can add a full-fledged university course to that list.
Berkowitz said he will be allowed to use only hemp plants with low levels of THC. That isn’t all that surprising, and is in line with many places that are fairly flexible on allowing low THC hemp plants.
This isn’t the first time a university or college has offered a cannabis-related course. In fact, it’s becoming something of a trend at schools throughout the U.S., Canada, and other parts of the world.
For example, there are at least 11 other universities and colleges in the U.S. and Canada that have offered these types of classes. These schools include:
And now, we can add University of Connective to this ever-expanding list.
Beyond simply offering courses related to the legal cannabis industry, some colleges are coming up with other creative ways to help students learn about and get involved with the marijuana industry.
For example, Thomas Jefferson University, located in Philadelphia, recently hosted an event called “CannaVation.” The event was essentially a “Shark Tank”-style entrepreneurial competition focused on the cannabis space. Students with an idea for a new cannabis business presented their ideas in an attempt to win startup capital and recognition.
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