This blog post is a guest contribution from Hannah Izer
In 2019, Data USA reported that 1.48 million college grads who hold bachelor’s degrees are in the U.S. workforce. However, many people (such as myself) have heard that pursuing a degree in English is a waste. If you aren’t going to be a teacher, what’s the point? It’s not “career-focused” enough, and you’ll have to get a master’s degree to be employable. Well, this hasn’t exactly been my experience within cannabis marketing.
Skills from English majors are needed in every single industry. For example, many departments require employees to possess strong capabilities in communication, legal, and marketing. Being a solid writer is golden within the cannabis industry as there’s a growing need for content services.
As of February 2022, the U.S. cannabis industry supports 428,059 jobs. This is an increase of 30% compared to last year. Cannabis is an ever-expanding industry that benefits from solid writing skills. From engaging social media posts, blogs that people want to actually read, and developing consistent content that will keep readers (and consumers) returning for more.
The value of those with strong reading comprehension and writing skills is not going unnoticed. Opportunities are appearing every day.
Excellent communication has influenced the cannabis space
There’s something to be said about forging a bond between reading and writing, and how strong communicators thrive in cannabis. Cannabis is still a growing industry that many people want to get involved in with their unique skill sets.
The better you can communicate, the better you can connect and share ideas and topics about cannabis. These skills also help promote changes that you want to see. Do you feel under-qualified to work in cannabis? Just remember that all skills are in demand – marketing, finance, sales, legal, cultivation, etc.
If you write with an understanding of your audience, you create real connections. You have the ability to influence businesses, news, and media surrounding the cannabis industry. Many English majors exist in the cannabis business. They find themselves having the freedom to create content and be part of shifting the stigma on cannabis.
“My content marketing knowledge and a constant drive to learn are what’s helped me succeed in cannabis,” says Seth Richtsmeier, Associate Director of SEO at Cannabis Creative. “I also read a lot of magazines, books, and blogs. The more I learn about the cannabis industry and the plant itself, the better I can create powerful content and communicate with clients.
English majors are adaptable to company and industry changes
When we read, learn new skills, and solve problems, we can open up to evolving information on cannabis. The power to continuously learn means we can adapt to careers, relationships, and personal growth.
About half of all English majors double major in secondary education and go on to teach high school. The other half goes into diverse careers such as:
- Legal professions
- Content services
As more states enter the legal cannabis market, it comes with more demand for workers. According to a survey conducted by Vangst, 26,000 new jobs are expected to develop within the next five years. Nearly 20,000 jobs are anticipated in New Jersey alone! You can find thousands of cannabis jobs currently posted on Glassdoor across the country.
Sarah Winston, an Account Coordinator at MATTIO Communications, earned her English degree in 2020. She has this to say about using her skills in cannabis PR:
“People underestimate how valuable strong reading comprehension and writing skills can be. My background has helped me with pitching, content creation, and even day-to-day client/media relations. I’m fortunate that I never have to think too hard about writing because I enjoy every second of it. And I have my English degree to thank for that!”
English graduates have options after completing their degree and the careers they’ll grow into. They carry skills that cannabis companies value all around the country.
Thinking and writing about cannabis is always valuable
Author Maxwell Perkins once said, “Just get it down on paper, and then we’ll see what to do with it.” An English grad has the unique capacity to put ideas to paper, cultivate curiosity in cannabis, and give readers the means to feed it.
David Deming wrote an article for the New York Times in 2019, “In the Salary Race, Engineers Sprint but English Majors Ensure.” He showed that while vocational and technical skills will have changed in a decade, problem-solving and critical thinking skills will prevail.
Research shows that the communication skills “built through dialogue between instructors and students, and through close reading and analysis of a broad range of subjects and texts” are desired in employees.
So with a quickly evolving cannabis industry, nothing should hold an English major back from jumping into this space with their skills. Our industry needs them.