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MI students get ahead of emerging science in cannabis

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Tuesday, October 3, 2023   

Cannabis is an emerging science in which students can make new discoveries and contributions. Wayne State University in Michigan has introduced an undergraduate certificate program this fall.

Andrea Matti, assistant professor of chemistry, Wayne State University, noted students are eager to participate, and schools across the country are experiencing a similar surge of enthusiasm.

"we had five majors and now we have 100," Matti said. "I'm, like, what? I said, 'You went up 20-fold in majors?' and he goes, 'Yeah, well, we introduced cannabis.' "

The certificate program aims to teach students the fundamentals of analytical chemistry, separation science and laboratory research for jobs in the cannabis testing industry. Together, the courses prepare students for careers in cannabis testing and regulation, including both CBD and THC. It is a growing field both locally and nationally.

Matti said the cannabis field is new and expanding fast, and as a science academic, you can discover so much and make a difference because you can find a new way to measure a standard and contribute.

"A large majority of our majors are pre-med or pre-pharm or pre-PA. But I also want an outlet for our students who don't want to get into health care, but they genuinely just like learning about these instruments and they want to work in a lab and testing," she explained.

Students who have completed at least 60 credits and have a GPA of 2.5 or better may apply for the cannabis chemistry certificate. The program also is open to students who have previously earned a bachelor's degree at any institution.

Disclosure: Wayne State University contributes to our fund for reporting on Civic Engagement, Education, Environment, Health Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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