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How America’s Colleges Are Dealing With Legal Marijuana

College administrators who have worked for years to snuff out marijuana on campus have a new problem: It’s going legal.

Or at least that’s the reality confronting schools in Colorado, Washington state, and soon Oregon. The legal sale of recreational marijuana to those over 21 will start in July in Oregon, thanks to a statewide ballot initiative last year. College deans won’t be among those celebrating.

Marijuana is still illegal under federal law, and like most public and private colleges across the U.S., the schools in Oregon have no choice but to comply. Colleges must implement drug-prevention programs to be eligible for federal funding—and as long as its federally illegal, that includes marijuana. So, with the legal retail sale of marijuana in Oregon approaching, college administrators across the state are tinkering with policy language and testing out marketing campaigns to make sure that, come July, their students know that no matter what the state law says, pot is still not allowed on campus.

“Everyone is thinking about what this looks like July 1,” Dr. Erin Foley, dean of students at the Oregon Institute of Technology. “The bottom line is for the federal government marijuana is still illegal, so that trumps state law because we get federal funding. It’s straightforward. The bigger piece for us is to make sure students are aware of that.” [Read more at Time magazine]

 

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