GALLOWAY TOWNSHIP – Stockton University has added a new minor in cannabis studies that will address issues surrounding the use of medical marijuana in New Jersey and the proposed legalization of recreational marijuana.

The new minor addresses Stockton’s mission to prepare students for the complexities of the world in which they will live and work and the issues that are shaping the future of New Jersey and the nation, according to a release.

“This is a growing industry and we want to prepare our students from a variety of academic viewpoints,” Associate Professor of Biology and cannabis Program Coordinator Ekaterina Sedia said.

Topics in the cannabis studies minor will include such issues as the legal, social justice, health, financial and economic implications of legalized marijuana for both medical and recreational use. Students will study the history of marijuana legislation, and what business opportunities have developed or could develop in the future. Social justice issues will look at how legalization can both benefit and hurt residents.

“We will not be telling students what is the right thing to do,” Sedia said. “We will be providing a context and information that they can use to make their own decisions. Offering a program is not an endorsement.”

Sedia said the university will be working with community partners. The minor will have five courses including an internship. The first courses will be Cannabis Law and Introduction to Medical Marijuana.  The Cannabis Law class being offered this fall is full, with 25 students registered.

“No matter how you feel about it, it is providing job opportunities,” Sedia said. “This is an issue that affects law, business, banking, investment, health sciences and social work. The minor is a way to offer our students the opportunity to study the issues.”

The new minor is part of an initiative by Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Lori Vermeulen to promote the continued development of programming at Stockton that teaches students to become engaged and effective citizens.

Nanette LoBiondo Galloway

Award winning journalist covering news, events and people of Atlantic County for more than 20 years.