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HOLYOKE — The Cannabis Education Center (CEC) at Holyoke Community College (HCC) will begin its fall schedule of industry training programs Sept. 10-11 with “Cannabis Core: Foundations of the Industry,” a two-day, introductory cannabis course.

Additional Cannabis Core programs are set for Oct. 1-2, Oct. 29-30, and Dec. 10-11. All classes meet over Zoom on Saturdays and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Cannabis Core program provides an overview of the cannabis industry in Massachusetts and is geared for people looking for general knowledge as they consider a cannabis career. The program is a foundational course and a prerequisite for the center’s four career-track courses: cultivation assistant, extraction technician, culinary assistant, and patient services/retail associate.

The CEC is now partnering on its cannabis industry programs with Green Path Training, an accredited RVT, or responsible vendor trainer.

“Green Path Training brings responsible vendor training to HCC for the first time,” said Julia Agron, the CEC’s assistant project coordinator. “This will allow our local and statewide cannabis businesses to benefit from the highest-quality classes available for their current and future employees.”

All businesses in Massachusetts licensed by the Cannabis Control Commission are required to provide RVT for cultivators, managers, and employees involved in the handling and sale of marijuana for adult and/or medical use.

Green Path founder Ellen Brown will be joining the CEC team as one of the instructors for the “Cannabis Core: Foundations of the Industry” classes. Brown is an award-winning educator and industry leader and U.S. Air Force veteran. For more than a decade, she has been a pioneer in the cannabis industry, training thousands of students around the world.

The CEC’s fall cannabis training program schedule is as follows:

“Cannabis Core: Foundations of the Industry”: Sept. 9-10, Oct. 1-2, Oct. 29-30, Dec. 10-11 (Saturdays and Sundays, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Zoom);

“Cultivation Assistant” (Session 1): Sept. 18, Sept. 25, Oct. 2, Oct. 9;

“Cultivation Assistant” (Session 2): Nov. 27, Dec. 4, Dec. 11, Dec. 18 (Sundays, 4:30-6 p.m., Zoom and asynchronous online classes);

“Extraction Technician”: Oct 15, Oct. 22, Oct. 29, Nov. 5 (Saturdays, 10-11:30 a.m., Zoom and asynchronous online classes);

“Culinary Assistant”: Oct 18, Oct. 20, Oct. 25, Oct. 27, Nov. 1, Nov. 3 (Tuesdays and Thursdays, 6-9 p.m., first two classes over Zoom, the rest in person at the HCC MGM Culinary Arts Institute, 164 Race St., Holyoke); and

“Patient Services/Retail Associate”: Nov. 5-6, Nov. 12-13, Nov. 19-20 (Saturdays and Sundays, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. over Zoom).

The cost of the Cannabis Core training is $599; career track programs cost $799. Scholarships are available to those who qualify. To register, visit hcc.edu/cannabis-core or call Julia Agron at (413) 335-6540.

The Cannabis Education Center is a partnership between HCC and Elevate Northeast and based out of HCC’s Kittredge Center for Business and Workforce Development. Elevate Northeast is a Massachusetts-based, women-founded 501(c)(3) nonprofit, created to support the growing cannabis industry in the Northeast U.S. through workforce training, education, and advocacy.

More information on these and other cannabis-industry programs can be found on the Cannabis Education Center’s website, cannabiseducationcenter.org.

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