On June 9, NJ Cannabis Insider will host the Yard State’s very first-at any time Cannabis Enterprise Awards gala, celebrating the men and women and businesses that aided form the field. The black-tie affair at the Carteret Undertaking Arts Heart will be in contrast to nearly anything witnessed ahead of in New Jersey’s hashish space. A Who’s Who of founded and up-and-coming cast of electricity players will occur jointly for 1 evening to figure out excellence and achievements in the space in excess of the final 12 months. Get on the invite record here.
While winners in eight groups will be uncovered on the evening of the gala, we are announcing the Publisher’s Selection awards in advance. Now, we place a spotlight on the inaugural winner of Excellence in Training: Rob Mejia.
Rob Mejia is an adjunct professor at Stockton College in Galloway, a self-described serial entrepreneur who launched the education corporation Our Neighborhood Harvest, and the creator of a number of publications with the intention to inform the community about the cannabis plant. He’s also component proprietor of Backyard State Canna Collective, a girl small business organization (WBE) comprised of various partners that not too long ago received a cultivation license in North Jersey.
“He goes previously mentioned and past,” reported Ekaterina Sedia, professor of biology at Stockton College and coordinator of the Insignificant in Hashish system. “He’s hardly ever articles to rest on what he has. He’s often looking for much more strategies to give.”
On the day the hashish industry opened in New Jersey, a tireless Mejia moderated a dialogue with much more than 40 professors from across the nation who joined him on Zoom to collaborate and discuss building criteria to train cannabis at their campuses. Amid the professors in attendance were a number of from New Jersey universities, including Rowan, Raritan and Montclair Point out.
“I’ve always believed in the electricity of community,” said Mejia, who life with his everyday living-extensive wife Beth Ann in Mahwah. “Community schooling for me is one particular of the significant issues.”
A next-era Mexican-American, Mejia was born in Denver, the sixth of 13 young children. He credits his family members, several of whom ended up educators — his father a social science trainer and his mom a journalist — for his knack and deep drive to educate and advise. He remaining Denver for Washington DC to go to Georgetown College, in which he played leading tier tennis for four many years whilst he pursued a liberal arts diploma.
He leveraged his working experience in publishing at Georgetown to a job with renown publisher St. Martin Press, where by he labored carefully with school professors to produce products they needed for their lessons.
He came to New Jersey just after a prosperous stint in Denver as an creator of a novelty book, which later spawned a line of attire, home furniture and relevant goods. It is there where by he began his family. Mejia has 6 adult youngsters, all male, ages 33 to 20. All over the time Colorado was getting ready to open up its cannabis industry, Mejia learned about the have to have for hashish schooling as a result of a single of his sisters, who was accomplishing study on healthcare hashish for the reason that she was battling cancer.
At initially he introduced Our Group Harvest as a internet site in which customers could learn how to cook dinner with hashish. But he shortly found that too a lot of realized way too minimal about weed, so he pivoted to become a resource for any individual searching for to master a lot more about the plant.
It was his education ebook, “The Necessary Hashish Book: A Industry Manual for the Curious” (Spring Residence Press, 2018), and his function with Our Group Harvest that convinced Stockton University to bring him on to develop hashish studies just after a fortuitous visit to Galloway during a campus take a look at with a person of his faculty-aged sons. There, Mejia not only he served create a plan that would introduce learners to the hashish company, he taught “Introduction to Health care Cannabis.” A lot more a short while ago, he started off his most ambitious program, “Social Justice and Cannabis,” which addresses hashish record and prohibition, mixed with notions of health inequality, earnings inequality, education and learning inequality.
But question him what he’s been working on recently, and he’ll notify you in the most excited conditions how Stockton students not long ago planted hemp seedlings as component of the Cannabis & Hemp Investigation Initiative.
“My theory has always been that Stockton is carrying out excellent operate, but I believe that if there’s anything I can do to slice and go alongside the entire education marketplace in New Jersey, that is only heading to make us stronger and much better as we go ahead,” Mejia mentioned.
Enrique Lavin is publisher and editor of NJ Cannabis Insider, a weekly subscriber-based on the net trade journal and activities team made by NJ Progress Media, which also publishes NJ.com, The Star-Ledger and other affiliated papers. Abide by him on LinkedIn.