Business of Cannabis Semester (Live)

Business of Cannabis Semester (Live)

Certification Program

$2,495

This deluxe live classroom experience is the most thorough education available at Oaksterdam University. Classes are held once a week for 17 weeks in real-time, allowing you to network with students from around the world and interact with our expert faculty. You’ll also get the opportunity for virtual field trips, grow labs, and special events. As the highlight, you will work as a team on a Capstone Project based on real-world parameters and feedback from leaders in the field. You’ll finish with an OU certification and a business plan lite, ready to bring your ideas to life.

Out of stock

January 2023 Live Semester

Orientation:

January 9, 2023, 10:00 AM PT / 1:00 PM ET

Classes Meet:

Mondays, 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM PT / 1:00 PM – 3:30PM ET
From January 9th to May 1st

About Our Virtual Classroom

Oaksterdam University Live Programs are a synchronous classroom model featuring interactive workshops. The Live Semester Capstone experience offers students the chance to network and collaborate in real-time.

Your group will meet virtually for live lectures once a week for 17 weeks. You will also have the opportunity to attend extra-curricular virtual field trips, tours, and weekly grow labs, as well as join the Oaksterdam Alumni Network. 

It culminates with a “capstone project” presentation. You will work in small teams to design a cannabis business or grow facility based on real-world parameters and feedback from industry experts.

This format is designed for entrepreneurs who wish to get started on an actionable plan to launch a cannabis business and have their questions about compliance, finances, equipment, branding, and marketing answered along the way.

Completion of all requirements grants an OU certification.

Screen Sharing

Follow along with instructor’s slide presentations and virtual whiteboard.

Live Video Lectures

Attend lectures from our world-renowned instructors in real-time.

Breakout Sessions

Collaborate with your classmates in smaller groups to discuss the material and work on team projects.

Interactive Audio

Raise your hand to ask the instructor a question or join in on a class discussion.

Chatroom

Ask the instructor a question, chat with the class, or send private messages.

Business of Cannabis Course Curriculum

Week 1: Federal vs. State Law

This course is an overview of state and federal cannabis laws, public policies, rules, and regulations. The course covers federal laws prohibiting cannabis and the risks of breaking those laws, including mandatory minimum prison sentences, asset forfeiture, and collateral consequences. Students will gain an understanding of evolving federal enforcement priorities and tactics, federal laws and policies that affect cannabis banking and taxes, and federal hemp and CBD laws and oversight. Students also will understand how states prohibit or allow medical and adult-use cannabis and the basic components of state licensing of commercial cannabis, including license types, eligibility, application requirements, and operating regulations.

Week 2: Business Project Introduction

The Oaksterdam Semester Program includes a capstone project that all students must complete to receive a certificate of completion. Students may participate in a group project or a solo project. The business project consists of a Business Plan “Lite” and a pitch deck presentation.

Business Plan “Lite” encapsulates a business’s significant concepts in a few short pages that look at the services/goods, structure, competitive advantage, leadership team, and market forces that form a unique business. 

Pitch Deck is a presentation by a company to a potential investor. A pitch deck identifies a problem in the market and explains why a company’s particular service or good is the solution. A pitch should illustrate the significant concepts of your business in a concise, engaging narrative. The pitch presentation must be five minutes or less. Your presentation will be followed by 10 minutes of Q&A with the judges and your student peers. 

Week 3: History and Policies of Cannabis

This course explores the history of cannabis, its role in shaping the modern world, and the many misguided public policies that have arisen due to efforts to prohibit it. We will then examine the shift in public attitude toward the plant in the 1990s as people began to rediscover its therapeutic potential and how that shift ultimately culminated in the passage of the country’s first state medical cannabis law, California’s Proposition 215. The course will conclude with a brief discussion of the ongoing push toward medical and adult use legalization in the U.S. and worldwide and the role you can play as we write the next chapter of cannabis history.

Week 4: Advocacy for the Cannabis Industry

Explore the collective quest for social, legal, and political acceptance of cannabis use. Review how advocacy has played a crucial role in shifting the perception of cannabis. What does advocacy look like under the current political administration? Which organizations are leading the way to end prohibition? How can you get involved in advocating for your rights as a patient or a business?

Week 5: Introduction to Cannabis Science

This course introduces the endocannabinoid system and explains how cannabinoids act upon this system. It identifies primary cannabinoids, such as THC and CBD, discusses their therapeutic utility, and highlights the importance of the ‘entourage effect.’ It also addresses the safety profile of medical cannabis, the established clinical benefits of cannabis-based therapies and their side effects, as well as situations for which it may be contraindicated and not recommended.

Week 6: Safety and Efficacy of Medical Cannabis

This course will discuss key concepts surrounding the safety and efficacy of cannabis. It will provide an overview of the existing scientific literature, provide insight into how conventional medications are assessed for therapeutic effectiveness and acceptable safety, and then apply these same concepts to the cannabis plant. It will also briefly highlight some of the more established clinical benefits of cannabis and provide a basis for the potential use of cannabis-based therapies to modulate the progression of various diseases.

Week 7: Methods of Ingestion and Delivery Systems

There are many ways to consume cannabis, and they all have different pros and cons, which business owners need to understand and communicate to their patients or customers. This course will teach you about the various types of cannabis products on the market and the methods of ingesting those products, including vaping, smoking, edibles, topicals, and more. Knowing the different ways to administer cannabis, the tools needed, and the process of making cannabis products is crucial to understand the cannabis industry fully.

Week 8: Introduction to the Cannabis Supply Chain

 In this course, we define the concept of a supply chain and identify how regulations shape the cannabis supply chain. Then, we take a closer look at the different license types that make up the cannabis supply chain and discuss how the various license types are interrelated in the cannabis industry. We then more closely examine the practice of seed-to-sale tracking, a regulatory requirement that is one of the defining features of the cannabis supply chain and which has a massive impact on the day-to-day operation of a licensed cannabis business.

Week 9: Economics of the Cannabis Industry

We define the concepts of supply and demand as they relate to cannabis markets and discuss how laws and regulations influence those markets. We explore the relationship between illegal and legal supply chains for cannabis and how policymakers have influenced the evolution of those markets. We outline the economic benefits generated by the industry, and how the sum of benefits argues in favor of ending prohibition. We conclude by discussing the financial barriers specific to the cannabis industry and how those barriers have impacted the cannabis economy.

Week 10: Cannabis Business Licensing

 This course outlines the state framework for commercial cannabis laws and regulations. It also provides an introduction to local cannabis licensing and regulations. Students will learn the essential components of state licensing, including license types, licensing eligibility, application requirements, and operating regulations. Upon leaving the course, students will grasp the state license application process and the free resources available from state licensing agencies. If their state or country does not yet have commercial cannabis, students will be prepared to contribute to developing their licensing laws.

Week 11: Branding and Marketing

 Branding and marketing are critical to the success of any business. Still, they are particularly important in the cannabis industry — competition is fierce, and many companies have very similar offerings. If you can’t differentiate your brand, it will get lost in the crowd. At the same time, there are several distinct challenges that cannabis businesses face in marketing their products. This course identifies the laws and rules that govern cannabis marketing, including content restrictions on the most widely-used social media platforms. We also discuss some unique aspects of cannabis consumer culture and the wide range of customer segments. We then present strategies for developing a solid brand and crafting an effective marketing strategy.

Week 12: Cannabis Business Risks and Protections

This course is an overview of the various types of liability facing cannabis businesses and strategies for reducing risk. It emphasizes the complexities of the risks and the need for students to seek expert assistance. The goal is to familiarize students with liability issues to identify them before they arise, appropriately prepare their business, and respond as needed. The course introduces students to the concepts of regulatory compliance, legal liability, and business competition. Students will learn the basic operating requirements for cannabis businesses and understand the importance of regulatory compliance. It also presents students with the penalty structure for cannabis licensees.

Week 13: Cultivation Science and Compliance

 Cannabis cultivation is a complex subject that includes a wide variety of topics such as botany, biology, chemistry, physics, and more. This course covers the basics of the cannabis plant’s physiology related to the business concerns of cultivation. We also address a foundational overview of how the cannabis plant grows. Whether your business includes a cultivation component or you plan to partner with cultivators that will provide cannabis biomass to your business supply chain, this course offers basic knowledge that you need to know.

Week 14: Cultivation Financial Management, and Facility Design Requirements

Cultivation Financial Management 
This course examines some of the financial considerations associated with launching and operating a commercial cannabis cultivation operation. We explore factors that determine how much revenue you can expect to generate. We examine capital and operating costs associated with different methods of cultivation.

Facility Design Requirements
This course examines the various types of equipment and compliance needs of a cultivation operation in the regulated cannabis industry. It offers a foundation of understanding of the vast array of equipment needed to cultivate cannabis successfully. It also explores the various components of ideal site selection within the context of optimal utilities setup.

Week 15: Introduction to Cannabis Extraction

 Cannabis extraction has very likely been around for centuries since humans first discovered the plant. Today, it is a rapidly growing segment of the commercial cannabis industry. This course introduces the core concepts of cannabis extraction and looks back at some traditional methods used to extract beneficial compounds. Then, we introduce modern extraction methods in use today at a commercial scale and the techniques of post-processing that are required to produce the desired finished product. Finally, we identify the different types of products you can make with cannabis extracts and learn that the ideal method of extraction will always depend on your final product goals.

Week 16: CBD and the Hemp Industry

The legalization of industrial hemp in the federal 2018 Farm Bill unleashed a wave of interest in hemp cultivation and hemp-derived CBD consumer products. This course examines the science, trends, and regulatory landscape for hemp and CBD and discusses how business owners can decrease risk while operating in a rapidly evolving market environment. We also discuss how the evolution of the cannabis market will influence the industrial hemp market and how the legalization of hemp will impact the future of the high-THC cannabis market.

Week 17: Business Project Presentations

Business project presentation and final.

Certification Program

A certificate of completion may be printed upon successfully passing the final exam and capstone project.

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