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UA Cannabis Certificate Program teaches skills for legal marijuana industry

UA Cannabis Certificate Program teaches skills for legal marijuana industry
Published: Jan. 19, 2022 at 6:49 AM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - The University of Arizona is going green by adding new courses this spring, teaching students the skills needed to work in the legal marijuana industry.

They were able to create the noncredit Cannabis Certificate Program by partnering with the cannabis education company, Green Flower.

Dr. Craig Wilson, vice provost for Online, Distance and Continuing Education said the university decided to ensure students interested in pursuing careers receive credible cannabis education.

“This, like other hot industries deserves a workforce that’s trained, prepared and professional. Here at the University of Arizona, we look forward to being a part of the conversation,” Wilson said.

The certificate’s subjects are the Business of Cannabis, Cannabis Law and Policy, and Cannabis Healthcare and Medicine. Each course is eight weeks online, resulting in a certificate that participants can complete in about six months.

Wilson said another driving factor in adding the courses was the workforce need in Arizona.

According to the 2021 Leafly Jobs Report, the legal cannabis industry already supports over 321,000 jobs nationwide. Employment in the industry has grown 27.5% per year since 2017, significantly faster than many other jobs. Arizona is projected to surpass $1 billion in total annual cannabis sales in 2021.

Wilson said he believes by next year, numerous universities across the country will be following suit and offering courses in the industry as well.

“I think it’s important that education services look at this and take it seriously, because the industry is large and our ability to help and continue to professionalize the workforce will be helpful in its growth,” Wilson said.

Registration is now open for the programs, and the first cohort starts March 7. At last check, 15 students had signed up for the courses. The cost for each certificate is $2,950. A $500 registration discount is available for the first cohort.

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