A School For Weed? Masschusetts' Northeastern Institute Of Cannabis Is Accepting Applications

JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA - JULY 02: A youth smokes marijuana in Soweto township on July 2, 2013 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Anti-apartheid icon and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Nelson Mandela has been in hospital for three weeks where his condition has been described as 'critical but stable.' (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
Source: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images News/Getty Images

Back in my day, schools wanted to keep marijuana as far from their gates as possible. The only mention of marijuana, in fact, was the imminent punishment you would face if you ever went near it. Well, it's 2014, a new age is dawning, and the Northeastern Institute of Cannabis is accepting applications for its very first class of students. Really.

Located in Natick, Massachusetts, the school offers a 12-course program that will teach students about the medical uses of marijuana, operating a dispensary, growing techniques, and the history, science, and legality of marijuana. But hey, if you're, like, totally stoked on your professors giving you a bowl for homework, keep on truckin', man. The Northeaster Institute of Cannabis is not a dispensary, so they cannot give or sell weed.

The school's founder, pot activist and author of "Marijuana 101" Mickey Martin, says that as states are continuing to legalize medical marijuana, the industry needs trained, knowledgeable workers to fill dispensary positions. Martin chose Natick to found the school because of Massachusetts' recent legalization of medical marijuana. Natick is also home to numerous dispensaries.

"You have new (marijuana) industries starting up in states all across New England but you have a virtually untrained workplace," Martin told CNN Money. "Most (training programs) are in Colorado and California, but for someone to travel that far to get trained is just not realistic."

If certified by the state, the Northeastern Institute of Cannabis will become New England's first registered cannabis school. Classes will be offered even if Martin is unable to secure certification by mid-August, but it will not be able to market itself as a certified trade school.

Prospective applicants need only a high school diploma or a GED to apply. Tuition to complete the 12-course program is $1,500, but individual classes are offered at around $199. Martin said that over 500 applicants have already expressed interest in the program.

While the program sounds like a great, comprehensive education on the booming dispensary business, we are, as per usual, most concerned with the electives. Because that's the best part of school anyway, right? We don't know if Martin has those tacked down just yet, but here are some for his consideration:
  • Stoner Film Studies: A critical approach to green-friendly classics like Dazed and Confused, Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle, and How High.
  • Reggae Appreciation: Listen and learn about the artists that make getting high so much more chill.
  • Culinary Art of Edibles: A focus on pastries and confections sure to please even the pickiest of Maureen Dowd's, erm, critics. 

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