A Thai university will soon offer marijuana classes in a bid to nurture budding ganjapreneurs and cultivate the country’s growing cannabis industry. Rangsit University, a private uni located about half an hour outside of Bangkok, this week unveiled their new undergraduate marijuana studies program: an area of study that will cover such topics as weed history, cultivation technology, and medical marijuana, Coconuts reports. Rangsit will be the first school in Thailand to offer such classes.
The program is likely to open in August for the next academic year, and will be run through the university’s Agricultural Innovation Faculty. Juniors in the four-year program will be given the option to specialise in cannabis and take classes in four primary subjects—marijuana history, marijuana farming tech, strain cultivation and development, and the development of marijuana for medical use—with a view to qualify students to become entrepreneurs in the cannabis industry or work on marijuana farms around the world.
“The world has advanced greatly in marijuana research, especially medical marijuana. But in Thailand, we don’t have skilled workers that know much about cannabis… We will be the pioneers of marijuana education programs in Thailand,” Banyat Saitthiti, faculty dean, told local broadcaster ThaiPBS.
“Once we have knowledge about marijuana, we can develop our own strains, and in the future we’ll have marijuana farms and stuff,” the associate professor added. “I believe that’s where we’re headed.”
Interested applicants need to have completed high school or have an equivalent vocational degree in math, science, and the arts, as well as a cumulative GPA of over 2.0. Specialty marijuana classes also won’t be offered until the third year of the course, after students have completed two years of core curriculum.
Last year, Thailand became the first Southeast Asian nation to approve the use of cannabis for medicinal purposes—a move that some hope will result in the revitalisation of the country’s once-celebrated weed strains. Jim Plamondon, vice president of marketing at Thai Cannabis Corporation (TCC), told VICE that “Thai cannabis will soon be the global industry's profit leader, like Swiss watches or Apple smartphones.”
Last month, Rangsit University also launched what it billed as the kingdom’s first medical cannabis research facility. Pubate Kwanmunee, of the school’s Agricultural Innovation Faculty, said that details on how that facility might be used in the academic program were still being worked out.
Sign up for our newsletter to get the best of VICE delivered to your inbox daily.
This article originally appeared on VICE ASIA.