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Cannabis Crash Course




Cannabis-focused courses are making their way to community colleges and four-year universities in California. From classes on medical cannabis to hemp cultivation, there are a variety of subjects to cover in the world of cannabis. The latest to hop on board is San Diego City College with a course led by Prof. Leroy Brady, Ph.D. His Business of Cannabis class comes as the first course on cannabis to be publicly-subsidized in the state.

As a business professor for nearly two decades, Prof. Brady serves as the chair of the business department. He began leading this new course during the first week of November, which offers students two credits. The course aims to teach the business operations of a cannabis dispensary and “explores the fundamental practices of managing a cannabis dispensary. Emphasis is placed on specific operational skills that are needed for the industry, including management, legal compliance, accounting and security,” as stated in the course description.

“We are in the business of educating and preparing students for business opportunities present in the business community. We also must stay relevant with what is happening in society to help students stay on the cutting-edge of business developments,” Prof. Brady generously shared with CULTURE. “California along with over 30 other states have legalized cannabis either medical or recreational and in many cases both. This creates job and entrepreneur opportunities. As a community college we see this as a perfect time to prepare students and our community for the future and the cannabis industry.”

“There is a lot of misinformation about cannabis, my hope is that students are able to investigate what they think they know or don’t know about cannabis.”


Examining cannabis through the business lens gives students the opportunity to understand how the cannabis industry works. Both a complex and fairly new industry, there is no doubt a lot to learn. The class uses two textbooks that focus on the recent progress within the cannabis industry. Prof. Brady explained that he is teaching the class in an unconventional way by inviting “first-hand speakers that cover the history of cannabis both from a world view and how it developed in San Diego.” His list includes executives of cannabis businesses, advisors of cannabis organizations, professors, the California state treasurer and more. With so many professionals participating to explain the dynamics of the cannabis industry, students enrolled in the course will have a full understanding of all it entails. They are also required to write summaries on the presentations they see and familiarize themselves with articles on cannabis research.

Prof. Brady encourages prospective students to enter his class with an open mind. “There is a lot of misinformation about cannabis; my hope is that students are able to investigate what they think they know or don’t know about cannabis,” he shared.