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Aug 04 2017
by Olivia Humphreys

8 Colleges Where You Can Take a Class on Weed

By Olivia Humphreys - Aug 04 2017

Weed. Mary Jane. Ganja. Whatever you want to call it, marijuana has historically been a strictly after-school (or before class, if you're into it) activity. But now, college students from coast to coast have the opportunity to study marijuana in a more scholastic manner. Future pharmacologists, sociologists, lawyers and politicians are all lining up to learn everything they can about weed — so here's a list of eight schools that have a jump start the growing field of marijuana education.

1. Harvard University

Located: Cambridge, Massachusetts

Legalization Status: Legal 

Harvard is ready to make their grads the smartest drug dealers on the block. Well, not exactly, but there are a lot of problems with marijuana policy, namely conflicting federal and state laws and outlandish taxation. "Tax Planning for Marijuana Dealers" is a seminar taught at Harvard that seeks to address some of these issues. It was and is the source of inspiration for most college courses about marijuana taught today.

2. University of Denver

Located: Denver, Colorado

Legalization Status: Legal 

At U Denver, students have a couple of cannabis courses to pick from. Between "Business of Marijuana," teaching students how to navigate a brand new market, "Representing the Marijuana Client," a law class on one of the more muddy areas of the legal system and "Cannabis Journalism," which focuses on the sociological and political intricacies of weed, the University of Denver has more classes on marijuana than any other accredited university in the U.S.

3. Hofstra University

Located: Long Island, New York

Legalization Status: Decriminalized

Hofstra's "Business and Law of Marijuana" uses a fake business (named Cannabis Inc.) to demonstrate the reality of the marijuana industry with as much authenticity as possible. However, rather than focusing solely on law and business, as the title suggests, this class dives into the ethics of marijuana law and legalization, making it one of the more comprehensive courses available.

4. Vanderbilt University

Located: Nashville, Tennessee

Legalization Status: Illegal

"Marijuana Law and Policy" is an in-depth course that asks students the same questions that face lawmakers. In doing so, the laws which are now so confusing and contradictory will soon have graduates and legislators who know how to implement reform, making marijuana both accessible and safe for the public.

5. Ohio State University

Located: Columbus, Ohio

Legalization Status: Decriminalized

Like many marijuana courses, "Marijuana Law, Policy and Reform" aims to educate on the complex laws. However, Ohio State's class examines the history of marijuana in America, as well as current societal issues surrounding the drug. All of these elements intersect in this course to make an extensive and enlightening course regarding implicit complexities of weed in America.

6. Oregon State University

Located: Corvallis, Oregon

Legalization Satus: Legal

Unlike most marijuana courses, "Marijuana Policy in the 21st Century" takes place in the sociology department of Oregon State, rather than the law or business department. However, students have the unique opportunity to actually work with lawmakers, especially regarding how marijuana can be kept in dispensaries and out of the black market. Side note: The class caps at 50, and fills up quick, so those planning to take it should sign up as soon as possible

7. University of Vermont

Located: Burlington, Vermont

Legalization Status: Decriminalized

In UVM's College of Medicine, future pharmacologists have the option to take "Cannabis Past, Present, and Future." This course teaches students the medical uses of marijuana and how it can be properly prescribed. In an emerging field of medicine, University of Vermont med students can earn their Medical Marijuana and Cannabis Certification.

8. Oaksterdam University

Located: Oakland, California

Legalization Status: Legal

No list of college cannabis courses would be complete without Oaksterdam University. Located on Telegraph Avenue, Oaksterdam is the United State's very first cannabis college. They offer both online and on campus classes spanning a wide variety of subjects — just check out their course catalog. For those looking towards careers in cannabis, it's one of the most prestigious options.

There you have it. Cannabis in the classroom is real, and it's a legitimate field of study. Maybe you're interested in studying marijuana, (and if you are, these colleges are great choices) and maybe you're just exploring the internet. Either way, with marijuana legalization sweeping the country, these courses are an important step in integrating weed into mainstream America.

Lead Image Credit: Unsplash

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Olivia Humphreys - Colorado College

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