There is a growing need for more therapists, more clinicians, and more researchers in the psychedelics industry. Academic institutions around the world are beginning to add courses and training programs to their list of curricula available for any student wishing to specialize in some aspect of psychedelics in order to rapidly build a psychedelics workforce.
There is a reported 306 academic institutions around the world are working on 628 psychedelics projects – 37 of them at Yale alone – many of which also incorporate their project research into their course work.
Much of today’s research is conducted at prestigious academic institutions such as Johns Hopkins’. Center for Psychedelics and Consciousness Research; and New York University Center for Psychedelic Medicineeach with their own specific psychedelics study groups, which include some of the best mental health researchers in the world, and are developing more programs as industry needs grow.
For example, the UC-Berkley Center for the Science of Psychedelics will do their own research using functional MRI experiments with low-dose psilocybin to gain a deeper understanding of the neural correlates of the psychedelic experience. This study protocol received Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval in January 2022 and campus Institutional Review Board approval in May 2022. According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, they plan to enroll their first volunteer subjects (DEA) and receive approval from the Research Advisory Panel of California in the fall of 2022.
Stanford University in Palo Alto, California, which has offered an “Introduction to Psychedelics” course since 2018, is also delving deeper into the study of psychedelics. This course has and will track the ongoing and evolving clinical uses and scientific investigations of psychedelics and psychedelics-assisted treatments. According to the program’s website, the course will discuss neuroscientific, clinical, and psychological perspectives, as well as the historical, legal, and cultural aspects of psychedelic medicine.
Other notable university courses and training programs in psychedelics include:
– That Center for Psychedelic Therapy and Research at the California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco, expects to train 1,125 psychedelic therapist graduates over the next three years. Their 2022 Psychedelics Therapist curriculum totals 150 hours of instruction, including 120 hours of face-to-face classes (online and/or in person) and 30 hours of individualized learning, mentoring, and online video classes.
– Located in Boulder, Colo Naropa University Certificate in Psychedelic Assisted Therapy is a new ten-month, 200-hour contemplative professional training program with a hybrid delivery of online and intensive retreat-based learning. Trainees receive training in essential aspects of psychedelic assisted therapy, trauma informed care and spiritual integration. It is run by the Naropa Center for Psychedelic Studies in partnership with the Naropa Extended Campus.
– The Ohio State University in Columbus is offering a new undergraduate program in psychedelics starting this fall. The course offered in the Department of Plant Pathology is Psychedelic Studies: Neurochemistry, Plants, Fungi, and Society. It is a comprehensive examination of the growing field of psychedelic studies, including relevant chemistry, ethnobotany, history, neurobiology, psychology and emerging policy options.
And it’s not just about educating or educating about the science of psychedelics. It’s about helping students spread the value of psychedelics as a new therapy for mental and health well-being.
One example comes from the University of California-Berkeley Center for the Science of Psychedelics, called the Ferriss-UC Berkeley Psychedelic Journalism Fellowship. The scholarship offers 15 scholarships worth $10,000 per year. Grant applicants must submit a well-researched and compelling story pitch, three published or broadcast work samples, a resume, and two letters of reference.
A letter from a media outlet expressing an interest in publishing or broadcasting the story will improve the chances of funding. The grant recipients are selected by a committee of editors and journalists. The premiums are intended to cover reporting costs and living expenses.
The grant encourages journalists exploring the field to really delve into what’s going on, Reporting in-depth print and audio stories on the science, politics, business, and culture of psychedelics.
The grant seeks to build and nurture a new generation of journalists covering the frontlines of psychedelics, according to the site’s information. “We look for big, underreported, narratively compelling stories set in a rich political, economic, scientific and cultural context.”