"Northern Michigan University will offer a new medicinal plant chemistry program, beginning with the fall 2017 semester. It is the only four-year degree of its kind to combine experimental horticulture and advanced analytical chemistry with an optional entrepreneurial track. The program is designed to prepare students for success in emerging industries related to medicinal plant production, analysis and distribution." Read the entire Campus Connect article here.
- April 17, 2017 - "NMU introduces medicinal plant program (but no, students won't be growing weed" by Michigan Radio
- April 11, 2017 - "Local university introduces medicinal plant chemistry program" by Chelsea Birdsall at ABC10 News
- April 1, 2017 - "Cannabis conundrum: NMU visiting lecturer talks genetics, politics" by Mary Wardell of The Mining Journal
- January 3, 2017 - "NMU offers medicinal plant chemistry degree" by BCRP Staff at The Benzie Country Record Patriot
- December 12, 2016 - "NMU offers new medicinal plant chemistry degree" by Lisa Bowers at The Mining Journal
During 2017, we hosted exhibits at 4 different conferences. These conferences were selected because of their prominence in the industry and because of their varied topics of focus and geographical location.The primary purpose of exhibiting at these conferences was to publicize our program, specifically while it is still the first and only program of its kind. To this end, our participation has been successful. Before the first two conferences, we received only a few cold-call inquiries regarding our program. Now, it is 1-2 per week, and seemingly increasing rapidly. The conferences we attended were:
- July 17-18, 2017 - Attended the Dispensary Next Conference & Expo in Denver, Col.
- June 12-14, 2017 - Attended the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) Conference in Oakland, Cali.
- May 2017 - Attended the MJBizCon in Washington, D.C.
- April 21-23, 2017 - Attended the O'Cannabiz Conference & Expo conference in Toronto, Canada.
Connections have been made directly with least 50 different businesses across the cannabis industry, including attorneys, media, fertilizer, lighting, scientific instrumentation, packaging, marketing, dispensing, growing, extraction, etc. as a result of our attendance at these conferences. Representatives of these companies have expressed interest in accepting our students as possible interns and have also proclaimed their intentions to share info about our program and NMU to any prospective students they encounter. Our program has been universally well-received, and people seem genuinely enthused and excited to see us exhibiting at the conferences and offering a real degree in Medicinal Plant Chemistry.
Several important (and unexpected) contacts were also made. These include Shelly Edgerton, Director of Michigan's Office of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, and Ed Rosenthal, long-time marijuana activist and author, among others.
Measurable impacts on enrollment directly from the conferences will take time to assess. In the first two conferences, multiple people mentioned that they had sons/daughters who were 11th/12th grade and would be very interested in our program. At least 4 people directly mentioned the possibility of a campus visit later this summer, and I of course told them to call me directly if they wished to do so so that I could help to coordinate that.