Pot-Growing Classes Start Next Month at Dieppe Community College

Article by Gabrielle Fahmy, CBC News

Pot-growing classes start next month at Dieppe community college Province pays $70,000 to cover tuition for first students in cannabis cultivation technician program By Gabrielle Fahmy, CBC News. Roger Melanson, the minister responsible for post-secondary education, says the province will cover tuition for the first group of students in the cannabis cultivation technician program. (CBC)

Community college students in Dieppe can begin training as medical cannabis cultivation technicians starting Nov. 27.

The provincial Liberal government, which last year flagged the cannabis industry as part of its economic growth plan, announced Monday it will pay $70,000 to cover the full tuition — which is at $2,800 for the 12-week course — for the starting group of 25 students.

The classes will be given in English and only at the Dieppe campus.

The program, which was hinted at a year ago, is the first of its kind in Canada, according to Michel Doucet, the executive director of continuing education for the community college.

“It’s a science-based program,” Doucet said. “Horticulture-based — so vegetation, plant care, control, environment, the watering, the elements that are required for successful growth.”

Organigram, one of two licensed medical marijuana growers in New Brunswick, helped develop the curriculum after being approached by the community college, said Greg Engel, CEO of Organigram.

“They felt they could get funding from the province for an initial program. So we’ve collaborated in that manner and we think it’s a great way to tee up potential employees for the company.”

The Moncton company is planning to more than double its staff — from 110 employees to about 250 — over the next few months, Engel said. It’s hoping to hire many of the graduate technicians.

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