US (IL): Oakton Community College opens cannabis cultivation lab

At a dedication ceremony held Wednesday morning, Oakton Community College administrators, professors and students celebrated the grand opening of the PharmaCann Cannabis Cultivation Lab at the college’s Des Plaines campus. 

Funded by a $600,000 donation to Oakton from PharmaCann – a nationwide cannabis company that produces both medical and recreational cannabis products – the 2,900-square-foot lab features three grow rooms and technology for controlling temperature, irrigation and lighting throughout the facility. Designed to educate students about the growth process of the cannabis plant and the production of different cannabis products, school officials say the lab is the first fully-equipped cannabis cultivation facility on a college campus in the state of Illinois. 

“It is incredible to see this beautiful new facility operational just a bit more than a year after the PharmaCann donation was announced,” said Oakton President Joianne Smith. “The cannabis industry represents a unique opportunity for students interested in agriculture, science, health care, retailing and nearly everything in between.”

In 2019, Oakton developed a curriculum aimed at training students interested in pursuing a career in the medical cannabis field. So far, more than 550 students have enrolled in cannabis education programs at Oakton, and program participants have already earned nearly 150 academic credentials for cannabis industry training, according to school figures. 


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