St. Paul College Launches Innovative Cannabis Career Programs in Anticipation of Legalization Boom

St. Paul College Launches Innovative Cannabis Career Programs in Anticipation of Legalization Boom

The announcement of St. Paul College’s new certificate programs for cannabis careers reflects the changing landscape of marijuana laws in Minnesota. With the legalization of recreational marijuana use and the anticipation of large retail sales beginning in 2025, educational institutions are adapting to the emerging industry by offering specialized training.

St. Paul College is pioneering this initiative among Minnesota community colleges by introducing three certificate programs focused on different aspects of the cannabis industry. The cultivation program covers skills such as trimming and packaging plants, the retail program prepares students for customer interactions and product selection in stores, and the extraction and product development program teaches the creation of edibles and topical products, emphasizing accurate dosage.

The college aims to eliminate barriers for students entering the workforce, and these programs are designed to be flexible, allowing students to complete them on their own schedules. The online courses, developed in partnership with Green Flower, a California-based company, consist largely of pre-recorded videos featuring industry experts with experience in states where marijuana has been legalized.

St. Paul College’s move aligns with the anticipated growth in cannabis-related jobs as the industry expands. While it’s unclear how many Minnesota schools offer similar cannabis education courses, St. Paul College is the second institution within the Minnesota State Colleges and Universities system to provide such programs.

The affordability of the courses, each priced at $750 and lasting nine weeks, makes them accessible to a broad range of students. Additionally, the programs offer the flexibility of starting at any time throughout the week or year.

The college plans to closely monitor the development of regulations for recreational marijuana sales in the state. They will engage with community members, as well as city and county officials, to ensure that the programs meet local needs. The initiative is seen as a dynamic response to the evolving cannabis landscape, with the possibility of future adjustments based on community feedback and industry developments.

Source Citation:
Navratil, Liz. “St. Paul College Announces New Program to Prepare Students for Cannabis Careers.” Star Tribune, 1 Jan. 2024,

Harnessing the Power of Agricultural Hemp: A Regenerative Farming Technique to Restore Soil Microbiology

Harnessing the Power of Agricultural Hemp: A Regenerative Farming Technique to Restore Soil Microbiology

In our modern world, agriculture has often been a driving force behind environmental degradation and loss of soil health. However, there is a growing movement towards regenerative farming practices that aim to restore and rejuvenate our soils. One such technique that holds immense promise is the use of agricultural hemp. Hemp, long misunderstood and unfairly stigmatized, is proving to be a champion in revitalizing soil microbiology, which is crucial for healthy and sustainable farming. In this blog post, we will explore how agricultural hemp can be used as a regenerative farming technique to bring back healthy soil microbiology.

Understanding Soil Microbiology

Soil microbiology is a fascinating field of study that focuses on the microscopic life forms that exist within the soil ecosystem. These microorganisms include bacteria, archaea, fungi, viruses, parasites, and protozoa. They play a vital role in nutrient cycling, organic matter decomposition, and maintaining soil structure. Healthy soil microbiology is essential for nutrient availability, plant growth, and the overall health of our planet.

The Problem: Soil Degradation

Over the years, conventional agricultural practices, such as monoculture farming and excessive use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides, have taken a toll on our soils. These practices disrupt the delicate balance of soil microbiology, leading to reduced microbial diversity and activity. Soil degradation results in reduced soil fertility, increased susceptibility to erosion, and the release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

The Solution: Agricultural Hemp

Agricultural hemp, or industrial hemp, is a versatile and sustainable crop that offers a promising solution to soil degradation. Here’s how hemp can help restore soil microbiology and promote regenerative farming:

Deep Root System: Hemp has an extensive root system that can penetrate deep into the soil. These deep roots break up compacted soil and improve aeration. This process also helps to prevent erosion, as the roots anchor the soil, reducing runoff.

Nutrient Uptake: Hemp is known for its ability to absorb and accumulate nutrients from the soil. As the plant grows, it takes up various nutrients, which are later returned to the soil when the plant is harvested. This natural nutrient cycling contributes to the restoration of soil fertility.

Carbon Sequestration: Hemp is an excellent carbon sequesterer. As it grows, it captures and stores atmospheric carbon dioxide in its biomass and roots, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and mitigating climate change.

Weed Suppression: Hemp’s dense canopy and fast growth help suppress weed growth, reducing the need for herbicides in farming.

Microbial Diversity: Hemp cultivation fosters a more diverse and active soil microbiome. This diversity is crucial for nutrient cycling and maintaining soil health. It provides a better environment for beneficial microorganisms to thrive and support plant growth.

Reduced Chemical Dependency: Hemp cultivation typically requires fewer synthetic chemicals, such as pesticides and herbicides, compared to many other crops. This reduced chemical dependency positively impacts soil microbiology by preserving microbial populations.

Agricultural hemp is more than just a cash crop; it’s a powerful regenerative farming technique that can restore soil microbiology and promote healthy, sustainable agriculture. By harnessing the deep roots, nutrient cycling, and carbon-sequestering abilities of hemp, we can rejuvenate our soil and create a more resilient and environmentally friendly farming system. As the world continues to seek solutions to combat climate change and soil degradation, hemp stands as a beacon of hope, showcasing the potential for regenerative agriculture practices that benefit both the land and humanity.

Mastering the Art of Decarboxylating Cannabis Buds

Mastering the Art of Decarboxylating Cannabis Buds

Decarboxylation is a crucial step when preparing cannabis for use in edibles, tinctures, or other infusions. This process activates the cannabinoids, such as THC and CBD, by removing a carboxyl group from their chemical structure, making them more bioavailable and psychoactive. Here’s how to decarboxylate cannabis:


Cannabis buds or trim


Baking sheet or oven-safe dish
Parchment paper

Preheat the Oven: Preheat your oven to 240°F (115°C). This is the ideal temperature for decarboxylation because it activates the cannabinoids without burning or vaporizing them.

Prepare the Cannabis: Start by breaking down your cannabis into smaller pieces. If you’re using whole buds, you can break them into smaller nugs or use a grinder to achieve an even consistency. The goal is to expose as much surface area as possible to ensure even decarboxylation.

Line the Baking Sheet: Line a baking sheet or oven-safe dish with parchment paper. This will prevent the cannabis from sticking to the surface and make it easier to collect afterward.

Spread the Cannabis: Spread your prepared cannabis evenly on the parchment paper in a single layer. Avoid piling it up, as this can lead to uneven decarboxylation.

Bake in the Oven: Place the baking sheet with the cannabis in the preheated oven. Set a timer for 30-40 minutes. The exact time may vary depending on factors like your oven’s accuracy and the moisture content of your cannabis. During this time, the cannabis will undergo decarboxylation, and you may notice a subtle change in color and aroma.

Check for Doneness: After about 30-40 minutes, check the cannabis. It should appear slightly browned and have a fragrant, toasted aroma. If it still looks green or has a “grassy” smell, you may need to bake it for a few more minutes.

Cool Down: Once you’ve achieved the desired decarboxylation, remove the baking sheet from the oven and allow the cannabis to cool completely. It’s essential to let it cool before using it in recipes or infusions.

Use or Store: You can now use the decarboxylated cannabis in your desired recipe, whether it’s for making edibles, tinctures, or other cannabis-infused products. If you’re not using it immediately, store it in an airtight container in a cool, dark place to maintain its potency.

Decarboxylated cannabis can be quite potent, so be sure to use it in moderation, especially if you’re new to cannabis-infused products. Remember to adhere to local laws and regulations regarding the use of cannabis in your area.