More Community Colleges offering Cannabis education programs in Illinois
Community colleges all throughout Illinois are beginning to provide cannabis education courses in an effort to help students land well-paying positions at dispensaries across the state.
Matt Berry, the head of staff for the Illinois Community College Board (ICCB), claims that nine colleges provide programs leading to certificates or degrees. You may choose from a variety of courses in this curriculum, including ones on plant cultivation and retail management.
The Illinois Central College (ICC), which provides free, non-credit courses, is a major influence on how the ICCB approaches cannabis. But it also draws inspiration from the $445 million in tax revenue that cannabis generated in Illinois last year.
Berry said: These (credit-bearing) programs are primarily located in the Chicagoland region, but they also have programs at Southwestern Illinois College in Belleville, Illinois Valley Community College, and Kishwaukee College. A couple of colleges, such as ICC, offer non-credit programs through their continuing education and workforce departments.
According to the Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1.5 million to 1.75 million employment opportunities in the United States will be supported by the legal marijuana business by 2025. The workforce for the cannabis industry is expected to more than double.
According to Berry, it is challenging for the ICBB to keep track of statewide registration statistics because the majority of Illinois community colleges' cannabis education programs are still in their infancy. Starting in the autumn of 2019, Oakton Community College provided the first junior college cannabis education program in Illinois.
Olive-Harvey, a tiny, two-year college on the far south side of Chicago, will be the first community college to start offering a complete associate's degree in applied science in cannabis studies in 2023. As the state's current total of roughly 185 conditional cannabis retail licenses continues to rise, Berry and the ICCB anticipate a surge in demand and supply for similar programs at more Illinois community schools in the upcoming years.
Cannabis has shown to be popular in terms of enrolment and popularity. At least, this is the situation on the campuses of ICC in Peoria and East Peoria.
Kristan Creek, coordinator of corporate and community education, said: We released the information in May for our first two cannabis education courses in June and October, and they filled up within two days.
The cannabis sector in Illinois has shown that there is a need for these courses. Since the business is relatively young, it needs knowledge and abilities that weren't previously included in school curricula.
The segmentation of these classes is essential for a successful market since the cannabis industry is unique from other sectors. Notably, the fact that cannabis is still an illegal narcotic under federal law makes "laws, regulations, and operations" crucial.