New Kent State Online Programs Aim to Help Fill Expected Workforce Needs of Cannabis Industry

Cannabis certificate programs align with university's commitment to offer learning experiences that are relevant and valuable to Ohio’s workforce
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Green Flower, an industry leader in cannabis education and training since 2014, is partnering with Kent State University to launch four new cannabis-related certificate programs to prepare students for the emerging industry in the state. Registration for the programs is open now, and the first classes begin in January 2024.

Kent State Lifelong Learning’s cannabis certificate programs are open to the public to enroll and offer focuses in four areas – business, healthcare, compliance and agriculture.

With the passage of Issue 2 in November, Ohio became the 24th state to legalize adult use of cannabis products. Ohio’s Medical Marijuana Control Program data shows over 400,000 registered medical cannabis patients in the state since the program began, with more than 179,000 currently active patients as of the most recent data reporting. According to the Vangst 2023 Jobs Report, which tracks cannabis industry trends by state and nationwide, Ohio’s legal cannabis industry grew by 24% in 2023 and created more than 1,300 new jobs in the state. With the industry growing in Ohio, legal cannabis companies are more in need of employees with knowledge about the industry.

“This is an important opportunity for Kent State University to collaborate with a recognized private education provider for training related to the emerging cannabis industry,” said Peggy Shadduck, Kent State’s vice president for Regional Campuses and dean of the College of Applied and Technical Studies. “With the recent legalization in Ohio, it is important for individuals to become well-informed. These on-demand, online certificate programs will enable individuals to develop specialized knowledge and skills related to the cannabis industry at their own pace. Trained professionals are needed to fill the jobs that are being created now and that will be created in the future. Individuals with a variety of backgrounds can learn technical skills as well as how to apply ethical business practices and quality standards to the emerging cannabis industry.”

Kent State’s Lifelong Learning programs are available in a fully online and asynchronous format. Students are able to work through weekly units flexibly with their schedules and complete a program in approximately six months. The programs were developed by industry leaders and professionals in each discipline, and instructors are selected by Green Flower based on their educational and industry expertise. Each certificate program costs $2,950. Students can enroll directly at

Students who complete a program are awarded a digital certificate and badge and membership in an employer network. The network includes virtual career events, priority access to job postings and other networking opportunities.

“Green Flower is honored to begin our partnership with Kent State University to offer cannabis education programs in Ohio,” said Daniel Kalef, chief growth officer at Green Flower. “Being the latest state in the country to make adult-use cannabis legal, Ohio is in a unique moment in time where many people are now trying to navigate the industry and find ways to be a part of it, as well as serve others in the industry. Kent State’s history and commitment to helping students find and grow in new careers is the very reason we wanted to create a partnership.”

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About Green Flower

Green Flower, founded in 2014, empowers consumers, regulators and professionals with the knowledge needed to make an impact and be successful in today’s emerging cannabis industry. Green Flower's platform powers the cannabis programs of top colleges and universities across the country. Green Flower was awarded Best Cannabis Education & Training in 2023’s EMJAY Awards.

About Kent State University

Kent State University is the highest-ranked public university in northern Ohio on the Top Public Schools and Best National Universities lists by U.S. News & World Report. The university also holds the esteemed distinction of being one of only five institutions in Ohio to be recognized as an R1 top-tier research university by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. Kent State is one of Ohio’s leading public universities and a major educational, economic and cultural resource far beyond the Northeast Ohio region it has served since 1910. The university has a global footprint with eight campuses throughout Northeast Ohio, a College of Podiatric Medicine, a Twinsburg Academic Center and academic sites around the world, including New York City; Florence, Italy; and Curitiba, Brazil. Kent State offers award-winning student support services that help students succeed. Its diverse student body comprises more than 33,500 students, including more than 2,000 international students from 101 countries, and the worldwide alumni family exceeds 273,500. Kent State provides transformational educational experiences and leads with its values, which include kindness, respect and freedom of expression.

For more information about Kent State, visit

Media Contacts:
Adam Summers, Green Flower,
Eric Mansfield, Kent State University,, 330-672-2797

POSTED: Tuesday, December 12, 2023 12:01 PM
Updated: Thursday, January 18, 2024 06:23 PM
Green Flower