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HCCC to Offer Cannabis Business Degree and Certificate Programs, and New Jersey Cannabis Licensing Workshop

Programs are designed to help cannabis entrepreneurs succeed long-term; classes begin July 2022

Starting this summer, Hudson County Community College (HCCC) will offer specialized programs in cannabis business. These include the College’s New Jersey Cannabis Licensing Workshop, Associate in Science in Business Administration, Option in Cannabis Studies, and Cannabis Business Agent and Business Management Certificates. These programs were developed in direct response to new legislation, market demand, and community need.

Within the past year, New Jersey passed laws to legalize cannabis. These laws were designed to remedy criminal justice system unfairness – arrests and decisions that disproportionately affected African Americans and Latinos – and to set up an equitable market in this arena. A few weeks ago, New Jersey’s five-member Cannabis Regulatory Commission (CRC) approved the first recreational cannabis business applications for conditional licensing. The CRC reported that 37 of the applicants identified as certified Diversity-Owned Businesses, and 46 with majority stakes identified as Black, Latinx, and Asian.

Sustaining any new business is challenging. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that 20% of new businesses fail in the first two years; 45% during the first five years; and 65% during the first ten years. For cannabis businesses – that are subject to regulations governing licensing, cultivation, testing, selling, and purchasing cannabis – the challenges are greatly increased. The new HCCC programs are designed to assist in abating these challenges and helping new cannabis businesses achieve sustained success.

“Hudson County Community College is dedicated to providing our diverse community with state-of-the-art programs that will lead to success and upward social and economic mobility,” stated HCCC President Dr. Christopher Reber. “We are committed to ensuring that those who were most harmed by past cannabis injustices are provided with the acuity to build and sustain profitable businesses.”

The HCCC New Jersey Cannabis Licensing Workshop is a four-week, non-credit program that provides an overview of what is needed to apply for and operate a State-licensed cannabis business. The workshop will include an overview of cannabis history and laws; do’s and don’ts of preparing applications, business plans, and achieving compliance. The workshop will be conducted by Jessica F. Gonzalez, Esq., Cannabis and Intellectual Property attorney at Hiller, PC General Counsel for Minorities for Medical Marijuana Inc., who will be joined by successful cannabis applicants, operators, and consultants. Additional information about the workshop may be obtained by contacting Chastity Farrell, HCCC Associate Director of Continuing Education and Workforce Development, at cfarrell@hccc.edu.

The HCCC for-credit offerings, which prepare students for cultivation, manufacturing, delivery, wholesale and retail sales opportunities in the cannabis business field, include

  • Associate in Science – Business Administration – Cannabis Studies – The
    60-credit associate degree program prepares graduates for ownership and operations opportunities in cannabis. The curriculum includes communication skills, marketing, accounting, economics, finance, and business management.
  • Cannabis Business Agent Proficiency Certificate – The 12-credit program provides graduates with the job skills for employment in entry-level positions within the cannabis business field. Credits transfer seamlessly to the Associate in Science degree.
  • Cannabis Business Management Academic Certificate  – The 33-credit program provides graduates with the knowledge and skills for supervisory positions in the cannabis business field. Credits transfer seamlessly to the Associate in Science degree.

Additional information on the degree and certificate programs is available by contacting Janine Nunez, Recruiter for the HCCC Business, Culinary Arts and Hospitality Management Division, at 201-360-4640 or jnunez@hccc.edu.

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