McMaster University Continuing Education prides itself on student success. We wanted to reach out to a current student in the Science of Cannabis program and see if they felt the program was able to future-proof their career. We love hearing student success stories, student feedback and graduate testimonials. Learn more about a current student Jonny and his story as he continues his educational journey in the Science of Cannabis program.
What is your name?
My name is Jon, but I am often referred to as "Jonny"
What program are you in at McMaster University Continuing Education?
SCC 101: Fundamentals of Cannabis Science, completed in Spring 2019
SCC 103: Risks and Harms of Cannabis, currently enrolled in Fall 2019
When did you start the Science of Cannabis program?
I began the program on June 17, 2019
Where are you working now?
I am a retail cannabis employee with the Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation (NSLC)
How are you able to use your new skills from McMaster Continuing Education at your place of work?
The NSLC is the crown corporation responsible
for the legal sales of beverage alcohol and recreational cannabis in the
province of Nova Scotia. This course has increased my cannabis knowledge, and
my ability to help the public in deciding which cannabis products are right for
them. More importantly, I am better able to provide the public with information
about the risks and potential harms of cannabis, and how to consume it as
safely as possible.
What drew you to McMaster Continuing Education initially?
looked around at a number of universities and private courses throughout Canada.
There were a lot of courses regarding cannabis cultivation, or general courses
which covered the very basics of cannabis (i.e., Sativa vs Indica), but
McMaster Continuing Education seemed to be the one that offered the most complete and in-depth
program. This is a very well-rounded course, covering everything from public
perceptions of cannabis (a particularly favourite topic of mine), to scientific
studies with accurate information about risks and harms.
Can you provide a specific example of using material from class?
public perception of cannabis being so important, I am now better able to
discuss the subject using proper FACTS about cannabis to dispel some of the
negative perceptions which currently dominate society. It has gotten a little better over the last
year, but the negative perception is still prevalent, so it is important to
approach people with correct information. McMaster Continuing Education was able to provide me with these facts.
What was the most useful thing you learned so far?
have learned that there are SO many unanswered questions in the scientific
world of cannabis. Now that legalization
is in place, there are students and scientists who can now finally ask the
questions and look for the answers without the fear of breaking any laws. The discoveries over the next 10 years will
How do you find online learning?
learning was flexible, although time needs to be put aside each week. There are
a lot of scientific studies that need to be analyzed, and a lot of questions
that come up that you will want to research, so at least 10-12 hours per week
needs to be set aside for course activity. I consider this a hobby though, so I spend a lot more time than that,
but it’s up to the individual.
Tell me about the instructors. What was the overall experience like?
The instructors are highly professional and
informative. The course assignments are
relevant to the current legalization status and offer a more in-depth look at
policies and procedures around the world. I thoroughly enjoyed the study of social perceptions of cannabis, as
general social acceptance has so much to do with the way policies and
procedures are put in place.
What is your greatest motivation to complete your program?
have dedicated my life to cannabis, and it will be my career until I retire. My ultimate goal is to become the
leading authority on cannabis for the Province of Nova Scotia.
How do you balance work, school and family life?
I currently work full-time, and in most of my
spare time, I am researching cannabis, or partaking in cannabis-related
activities. For example, I had a great time at the National Cannabis Conference
in Toronto earlier this year. My two
daughters are age 7 and 11, they live in Moncton and are very proud of their
motivation for taking this course is so that I am well armed with facts when my
daughters are at the age when they will consume cannabis. I would like to think that would be after the
age of 25, but if it’s not, I want to be able to give them the necessary facts
so that they can make their own well-informed decisions in a safe way.
What would you tell a friend who is considering going to McMaster Continuing Education?
would recommend this course to anyone who is looking to expand their knowledge
around this new and exciting world of cannabis.