A flowering partnership: Kingsborough Community College teams up with cannabis educator for new course

FILE PHOTO: Chemdawg marijuana plants grow at a facility
REUTERS/Blair Gable/File Photo

Amid the Empire State’s effort to legalize recreational marijuana, one Brooklyn school is making moves to educate its students on the flowering cannabis industry.

Kingsborough Community College on Thursday announced a new partnership with Green Flower, a cannabis education provider. The new partnership will allow the Manhattan Beach school and Green Flower to create three online certificate program developed to quickly train professionals to fill positions in the cannabis field.

“KCC’s commitment to helping working adults find and build new careers is second to none,” said Daniel Kalef, Green Flower’s vice president of higher education on Dec. 7. “Educating a new workforce in cannabis retail, manufacturing and agriculture environments will significantly contribute to the industry’s continued growth through a well-trained workforce.”

Adult use and retail sale of recreational marijuana was legalized in March 2021, and, on Nov. 21, the state’s Cannabis Control Board approved its first batch of 36 dispensary licenses in the state

Each certificate course costs $800 and enrollment is already open. Training begins Nov. 30, with no prior experience required to enroll.

“New York is one of the nation’s largest cannabis markets. The state’s recent inception of retail dispensary licenses will see the creation of new jobs requiring unique skills,” said KCC Vice President Dr. Simone Rodriguez. “These courses are perfect for people seeking to increase skills or transition to a new career altogether.”

Other educators at KCC noted how access to cannabis education could be a crucial stepping stone into the new industry.

“Increasing accessibility to cannabis education is crucial at a time when there is a growing demand in this area,” said Christine Zagari LoPorto, assistant dean of Workforce Development and Continuing Education at Kingsborough Community College. “It is important for us to work towards closing the opportunity gap in New York’s economy and prepare students for careers that can be ladders to the middle class.”