Women of Cannabis: Maha Haq is a powerhouse in Cannabis education
Haq is a powerhouse in cannabis education. She is President and founder of Cannaclub University, a web of student alliances for those students who seek to concentrate on cannabis science, and aim to enter the cannabis space post-graduation, launching Cannaclub University at her alma mater of UCLA, the organization which now spans the country. She also works at an ISO accredited cannabis testing lab, CannaSafe Analytics. Haq is a champion for women and POC in the space, as well as a keynote speaker on cannabis education.
Being an immigrant child with strict parents made this journey difficult for Maha. When she was caught smoking at age 17, is when her career in Cannabis education began and her mom was her first candidate. Her mom is a clinical researcher at a cannabis hospital and was truly impressed by the benefits of Cannabis. She even took up the chance to present it to her colleagues and their patients. “I founded Cannaclub in an effort to combine career interests with my academic studies. While attending college, I managed operations at vertically integrated medical dispensaries for three years. I later joined a cannabis consulting firm based in Denver where I developed legal cannabis businesses in numerous states and six countries” she said when asked about how her story began.
Her advice for budding Cannabis entrepreneurs goes like this “work to realize how powerful you can be in the cannabis industry. We have a unique chance to mold a massive new market. Opportunities are everywhere, from business development and policymaking to healthcare solutions and scientific research. Anyone can become a pioneer in this space. Engage and participate with your community — doing so will promote advocacy, education, and transparency. Study the past, impact the present, and plan for the future.”
She has also worked towards changing the sexist ambience at dispensaries where women are made to wear revealing clothes while being a budtender. She says this is an obstacle for herself and many women in the industry. “Although I am no longer experiencing the same pressures as I did before, there is still an unfavorable behavior and perspective towards women in the cannabis space” she said.
As someone who is half Indian and Pakistani, her road to success was not smooth but she has persisted to become an inspiration for all women across the globe. With new research and education acceptance is sure to follow!