Dispensary Technician: Salary, Jobs, and Training
The legalization of medical cannabis throughout multiple states in the U.S. has created increased job opportunities and significant growth within the industry.
Currently, medical cannabis is legal in 36 states and the District of Columbia. In Maryland, there are already over 100 dispensaries and the demand for qualified workers is only increasing.
With increased opportunity comes increased responsibility, and that’s where our dispensary program and cannabis training come in.
In this article, we’ll cover the ins and outs of a cannabis dispensary program, the current market for cannabis-related jobs, as well as the projected salary for these careers.
What is a Dispensary Technician?
Dispensary Technicians work in medical cannabis dispensaries (sometimes known as marijuana dispensaries), performing day-to-day operations, helping patients find products that suit their needs, and ensuring proper dosing and usage.
The job is similar to that of a pharmacy technician but is more specialized.
Dispensary Technician Job Outlook
According to Monster, one of the leading job market websites, the overall cannabis business increased by 71% in 2020 over the previous year.
Data from ZipRecruiter, another large job market, the cannabis industry is outpacing both tech and healthcare jobs in terms of growth, year over year.
Recently, our student, Brandon Higgs [link to profile when live], noted the growth of HCC’s dispensary program after returning to speak to a current class. He said, “My class was small—only six of us. The class I spoke to had 20 students… It’s a really exciting time to join this field. The industry is growing quickly. I am telling all my friends to get certified at HCC.”
Cannabis Dispensary Salary
According to Glassdoor, the national average salary for a dispensary technician is $34,470/year in the United States, and average $15.75/hour in the Baltimore region.
ZipRecruiter has that number at $41,064/year or $20/hour.
PayScale puts it at $14.58/hour.
All in all, the cannabis dispensary program can be a lucrative trade for those interested in pursuing it.
How to become a dispensary technician
In order to become a dispensary technician, you will require training.
HCC’s two-course series, Dispensary Technician I and II, will teach you the regulations and best practices of the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission (MMCC). You will earn a college certificate and be ready for an entry-level job in a state-authorized medical cannabis dispensary.
And the best part is, it’s only a six-month program.
Brandon Higgs, after taking the program in 2020, is now a post-harvest associate at a multistate cannabis company, and is looking to work up to the position of head grower, where he will work with seeds, soil types, and product improvement.
Are Scholarships Available?
Two scholarships are available for students interested in taking the Dispensary Technician I and II series. The Governor’s Emergency Education Relief (GEER) fund provides scholarships to those who have been impacted by the coronavirus. The Workforce Development Sequence Scholarship (WDSS) provides financial assistance for approved noncredit programs. Explore all of the options to pay for college at HCC, including funding.
All in all, the cannabis dispensary technician program is a great opportunity. Not only is the job outlook promising, but is exactly what you need to get ahead.