KALAMAZOO, Mich. (WOOD) — Kalamazoo Valley Community College is offering new virtual classes that aim to equip students with the foundation they need to break into the marijuana industry.
Professional training is delivered through a partnership with a California-based cannabis education organization green flower. There are three eight-week online courses focusing on three main roles.
“The first is a crop technician and it’s more about the agricultural aspect, the production aspect; there’s a supply center associate and then an advanced manufacturing officer,” said Craig Jbara, KVCC’s vice president of strategic business and community development.
He said the program was designed after people in the industry said they were struggling to find qualified applicants.
“In fact, several companies in the cannabis industry came to us and started discussing the need for employees, the expansion they’re going through,” Jbara said.
Classes began to register at the beginning of the month and can be completed at the student’s own pace. Upon completion, students will earn certificates from KVCC and Green Flower.
“The cannabis industry is quite regulated, so (the courses are about) understanding not only the processes, but also the principles and the safety – packaging, labelling,” said Daniel Kalef, vice president of education. superior at Green Flower.
Green Flower said the training makes candidates more attractive for entry-level positions and helps prepare students for success.
“Not all cannabis companies have the means, time or ability to train their employees from day one on everything they need to know about these areas and that’s why they have such high turnover, it’s because people come and they really don’t understand. that,” Kalef said.
Opportunities for advancement are also frequent in the company which is still considered in its infancy.
“The upward mobility is amazing. People are promoted from entry level to management very, very quickly and so it’s a wonderful phenomenon,” Kalef said.
KVCC says it’s the only community college in West Michigan to offer cannabis industry training.
“As far as we can tell, it’s one of the early adopters of this new type of format,” Jbara said.
For more information about the courses, you can visit KVCC website.