Sustainable Innovations is dedicated to developing careers in cannabis. Our success hinges on training experts to be leaders in the cannabis industry. That means our employees and partners need to be trained beyond just the law. Employees and students at Sustainable Innovations will learn how to effectively manage cannabis enterprises.

In addition to our own curriculum, Sustainable Innovations through Sustainable Innovations Development Company, LLC has partnered with Kishwaukee College on their community college cannabis vocational pilot program.  At present, the Illinois Department of Agriculture aims to license at least 8 of these programs within the state. By 2022, these colleges will be allowed to start training interested students.



Cannabis cultivation jobs include trimmers, growers, grow leads, grow managers, directors of cultivation and more. Experience isn’t always necessary, making it a great category for those newer to cannabis - cultivators can start as a trimmer or post harvester and work their way up to growing. Those with educational or practical experience in cultivating the cannabis plant often start as growers.


When considering positions in the lab, there is a need for chemists, compliance managers, quality managers, extraction managers and directors of extraction. A chemistry or related background is usually required for these jobs. Compliance managers may not need a chemistry background, but will require an understanding of the local and federal compliance regulations.


Processing includes the preparation of cannabis or its byproducts for commercial retail and/or wholesale, including but not limited to: drying, cleaning, curing, packaging, and extraction of active ingredients to create products and concentrates.


Executive jobs provide the vision that drives the industry forward. These individuals manage the large-scale company strategy and corporate efforts. Candidates don’t necessarily need to bring direct experience from within the cannabis industry; however, demonstrating a leadership perspective and success in business is a must.


With many unique regulatory requirements, experienced financial professionals from diverse industry backgrounds are usually in high demand. Business professionals with an entrepreneurial spirit and a strong knack for both financial complexity and creativity can find a number of opportunities in cannabis, from accounting specialist roles all the way up to executive finance leadership.


Research jobs in cannabis are typically comprised of medical, agricultural, political and data scientists. These individuals pull data from multiple sources, correlate the data and analyze trends. Researchers will be responsible for spearheading the buildout of Cannabis data analytics, direct strategic research initiatives that will lead to recommendations for the Cannabis industry and monitor and oversee the cannabis research utilizing reports, dashboards and data visualization to tell the story of the impact of cannabis legalization.


Manufacturing jobs in the industry oversee the packaging of the cannabis products for sale in compliance with local and federal regulations. These include packagers, production technicians, production supervisors, and directors or vice presidents of manufacturing. While packaging is typically an entry-level position that offers the opportunity to advance into production technicians or supervisor roles, a background in operations management and production can be helpful for mid-to-upper-level positions.

Operations/Facility Management

Business operations roles encompass are designed to ensure teams and facilities are operating as efficiently and as cost-effectively as possible. For example, inventory managers ensure that product meets demand but is not overstocked and security managers are vital to compliance and product loss prevention operations. Candidates with backgrounds in economics, accounting, supply chain management and military ops can often find success in this area.


In today’s dynamic and social media driven economy, successful companies in cannabis need to be tech companies, first and foremost. Because federal restrictions and legal challenges create challenges in contracting with IT companies, many cannabis businesses put a premium on developing first-rate technology talent in-house. Potential jobs can cover everything from IT directors, systems administrations, and grow operations automation and data gathering.


Retail jobs include everything from budtenders, general managers, merchandise planners, directors of retail and vice presidents of retail. For entry-level cannabis job seekers who have a knack for customer service, budtending is a common entry-level position with minimal certification requirements, often dictated by state regulations. Merchandise planners, directors and vice presidents of retail often have a background in retail management or related field.


Cannabis professionals need to generate demand, manage branding, and develop digital marketing as their core competencies. Candidates who are agile, thrive creatively when problem solving for various constraints, and are adaptable in an ever-changing landscape have great opportunity to find a fit in cannabis.


While many believe that cannabis sells itself, products like vapes, edibles, technology platforms and everything in between rely on sales representatives to get their products in front of the right customers. Brand ambassadors help introduce, sample, and sell products and product lines effectively.


If you are interested in learning more about our educational pathways program or career development, fill out the form on contact page and send.