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This Pioneering Cannabis Graduate Program Is A Blend Of Social Work And Marijuana, Here’s Why Students Should Apply


Cannabis education is slowly moving toward acceptance in medical schools as scientific research has grown exponentially over the past several years.

Simultaneously, there’s a crucial need for more knowledgeable medical cannabis experts nationwide as the stigma around the plant fades and its therapeutic potential becomes more broadly acknowledged.

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The University of Maryland School of Social Work (UMSSW) has teamed up with the School of Pharmacy to address the increased demand for more cannabis professionals. The collaboration resulted in a new dual graduate program, the , which UMB says is “only one in the country.”

“This initiative aims to meet the escalating demand for professionals equipped with the knowledge and skills to navigate the complex landscape of medical cannabis therapy,” UMB’s Brittney Brookins.

The integration of medical cannabis education into the Master of Social Work (MSW) program will help healthcare professionals to include medical marijuana therapy into patient care. The new program would enhance their “capacity to advocate for, assess, and administer medical cannabis treatments within a social work framework.”

The pioneering program would allow MSW students to pursue a Post Baccalaureate Certificate in Medical Cannabis Science and Therapeutics.

“Blending medical cannabis education with social work education is essential as we address the changing needs of the health and mental health landscapes of our world,” Judy L. Postmus, Ph.D., ACSW, dean of UMSSW, said. “As our views of cannabis evolve and as we recognize the possible benefit in therapeutic settings, we urgently need educated practitioners to navigate these settings in a professional and holistic way.”

The Graduate Certificate in Medical Cannabis Science, Therapeutics, and Policy would help students understand cannabis pharmacology, clinical applications, historical context and legislative frameworks.

Chad Johnson, PhD, co-director of the Masters in Medical Cannabis Science and Therapeutics and assistant professor in Pharmaceutical Sciences explained said the new program is important for social workers, as they are “likely to engage with patients who are using cannabis either medically or non-medically, as well as those expressing curiosity about its effects.”

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