Educators Share Ideas to Grow Cannabis Curriculum

Galloway, N.J. -  As the cannabis and hemp industries grow, colleges need to create, expand and adapt their curriculum to meet growing demand for trained professionals, panelists said at the first Cannabis Curriculum Convening hosted by the Cannabis and Hemp Research Initiative at Stockton University (CHRIS) on April 21 and 22. 

cannabis convening panelMore than 150 people registered for the event, with a large contingent coming from New York, New Jersey, Chicago and Michigan.  

Stockton Adjunct Professor of Cannabis Studies Rob Mejia said several themes emerged from the workshops, which covered cannabis education in science, medicine, law, business and cultivation and social justice:  

  • Agreement that when an administration supports cannabis education you can create and offer a vibrant cannabis program. 
  • Continuing and adult education could be good places to start cannabis curriculum and could cover niche topics. 
  • There is demand and need to train/educate students in cannabis science and testing. 
  • Hemp education is still being overlooked. 
  • Educators should collaborate to create courses and share expertise and resources. 
  • Cannabis educators are happy to collaborate and connect with like-minded instructors. 

Mejia said the next steps include creating a LinkedIn page for cannabis educators and others interested in cannabis education in order to maintain the community developed at the event. 

“Cannabis educators are hungry to connect and talk about what they are doing in and out of the classroom,” Mejia said.  

Panelist Koral Fritz, an attorney in Michigan and professor at Lake Superior State University said some people are reluctant to admit they teach cannabis, but want to connect with others to help create a sustainable industry. 

“Universities can link up to share resources,” she said.  

Mejia said next year he hopes Stockton can host another Cannabis Curriculum Convening at the Atlantic City campus with both in-person and virtual events, and an opportunity for vendors and businesses to participate.  He is also looking for research grant opportunities. 

Stockton currently offers a minor in Cannabis Studies to undergraduate students, and an Online Cannabis Studies Certificate open to the general public.