HOLYOKE — Cannabis cultivation, beer and cider brewing, and winemaking are just a few of the new academic programs being offered this fall at Holyoke Community College (HCC).
All three were developed as one-year, 24-credit certificate programs through the college’s Sustainability Studies department.
“As the cannabis industry has moved into Holyoke and other area towns, a number of the owners of these enterprises are asking for trained employees,” said Kate Maiolatesi, chair of HCC’s Sustainability Studies program. “Estimates for new cannabis jobs in the region range as high as 1,500.”
One new course, “Cannabis Today,” provides knowledge of the growing part of the industry. Other requirements for the certificate include classes in agriculture, marketing, and entrepreneurship.
Maiolatesi said the college also developed the brewing and winemaking certificates with an eye on expanding industries. Another new course, “Fermentation Science,” explains the scientific processes of fermentation as it applies to both brewing and winemaking.
This fall, HCC is also unveiling new certificate and associate-degree programs in a range of other academic areas, including behaviorial neuroscience (degree), critical social thought (degree), geoscience (degree), child development (certificate), mental health (certiificate,) and veterinary assistant (certificate).
“Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, HCC continues to be innovative in creating new courses and programs that will set students up to either immediately enter the workforce or prepare them for transfer to four-year schools,” said Rachel Rubinstein, HCC’s vice president of Academic and Student Affairs.
The fall semester at Holyoke Community College begins Tuesday, Sept. 8. To enroll for fall, visit hcc.edu/admission, call (413) 552-2321, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.