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Fanshawe hoping to graduate 'cannabis scientists' with new program

A year since pot became legal in Canada, the ever-growing business has prompted Fanshawe College to create a graduate program around cannabis production.

The one-year graduate program will teach students everything from cannabis production to quality control

Fanshawe College is offering a new program called Cannabis Applied Science. (Supplied by Fanshawe College)

A year since pot became legal in Canada, the ever-growing business has prompted Fanshawe College to create a graduate program around cannabis production. 

Students will get to work in a licensed, cutting-edge lab to learn everything from pot regulation to quality control. 

"The license environment really looks at standard operating procedures, how you're receiving cannabis, how you're tracking it, who has access to cannabis," said Lindsay Engel, the associate dean of applied sciences and technology at Fanshawe. 

"While the students won't need a police record check to work in the research environment, they will need one to work in the field. It gives them that experience of working with operating procedures before entering into industry." 

The Cannabis Science program is set to launch in the fall of next year, and will be open to students who have a science post-graduate background, Engel said. 

"We're hoping that they're cannabis scientists when they come out, that they've had that hands-on experience and when they get to the workplace they're really ready to start work. They're prepared, they got to look at it from a personal perspective instead of just a theoretical experience. A lot of the courses have labs attached to them so they'll really get that 'hands-on' experience before they get out there." 

Those in the cannabis industry are working with Fanshawe to develop the program, to make sure that students get the information they need to be able to start work. Students will learn to analyze cannabis for quality, safety and stability, and will get to contribute to research that develops new cannabis products. 

Courses in the program include Chemistry of Cannabis, Cannabis Crop Science and Principles of Cannabis Regulation. 

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