The University of the Sciences in Philadelphia announced last week that it would begin offering a Master of Business Administration degree program focusing on the cannabis industry. The university is currently enrolling students in the Cannabis Industry Option MBA in Pharmaceutical and Healthcare Business program and will begin conducting classes online in September.
Founded in 1821 as the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy, the first college of pharmacy in North America, the University of the Sciences now offers more than 30 degree programs from bachelor’s through doctoral degrees in the health sciences, bench sciences, and healthcare business and policy fields.
Andrew Peterson, the executive director of the University of the Sciences Substance Use Disorders Institute, said in a press release that the new degree program will help train business professionals for the quickly growing legal cannabis industry.
“There are many unique aspects to the medical cannabis and hemp industries, and those in this new industry have been testing the waters for the last few years,” Peterson said. “This new program will help to formalize those teachings for those currently in the cannabis industry, entering the field, or interested in other fields associated with the industry.”
Teaching the Business of Cannabis
The new cannabis MBA program at the University of the Sciences, which the university says is the first of its kind in the United States, will be offering coursework that includes education in the business of cannabis, hemp, and dispensary operations. The option includes four elective courses that were created in partnership with the Substance Use Disorders Institute with input from cannabis industry professionals.
Coursework in the program will include Introduction to the Medical Cannabis Industry; Finance and Regulation in the Medical Cannabis Industry; Cannabis Marketing and Sales, and a project-based course where students will work to write a business plan or bring a product to market.
Peterson added that as cannabis legalization continues to spread, the new industry will see new opportunities to integrate with more conventional business sectors.
“As the industry grows, and the potential for medical cannabis to converge with the pharmaceutical industry, a specialization in pharmaceutical and healthcare business will be an asset to those in the cannabis industry,” said Peterson. “A combination of healthcare, pharmaceutical, and cannabis business knowledge and expertise will be incredibly valuable as graduates move forward in their career.”
The University of the Sciences MBA program is the second graduate degree program focusing on the cannabis industry to launch recently. In June, the University of Maryland revealed that it was launching a Master of Science in Medical Cannabis Science and Therapeutics degree program.