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“I would like for Nevada to take another step forward to showing acceptance of this non-harmful, medicinal plant”

 In News, Opinion

School has fully resumed, classes have been added or dropped, financial aid has been dispersed, books have been bought and the unfortunate have been purged from the roster. For those who survive to study another semester there is no time to stop and smell the roses. With summer at our backs and midterms in front of us, the time has come to organize. Making big waves across Nevada this academic year is SSDP.

Students for Sensible Drug Policy (SSDP) grows amongst the sagebrush of the Silver State. Spearheading the charge are the lady leaders of UNLV, Amanda Angellella and Jessie Stephin. As founders of the UNLV SSDP Chapter they are recruiting other students to help meet the requirements needed to be recognized as an official student organization. “I read an article in Vegas Cannabis Magazine about student voters and decided to get involved. I’m interested in being a voice for students and helping others to realize their voice is important too,” said Jessie.

Their primary focus at this time is recruitment and utilizing technology and social media to amp up their efforts by way of Facebook and Twitter @unlvSSDP #UNLVssdp. They’re on campus raising awareness about marijuana prohibition in Nevada and encouraging students to vote in November.

They hope to include a UNLV SSDP member in the Your Vote, Your Voice: Student Involvement in the Political Process panel discussion at UNLV, October 6th from 4pm until 6pm in the Goldfield Room of the Lied Library. The UNLV University Libraries and the UNLV Political Science Department presents a panel discussion regarding the political process, how voting will impact public policy in Nevada and the topics that will be trending this election season, including the legalization of recreational (adult-use) marijuana. The audience will receive information about how to access their sample ballot online and how to prepare to vote. Dave Damore, Political Science professor, and Heidi Johnson, Social Sciences librarian, will moderate the panel. More info can be found on the UNLV events calendar.

The College of Southern Nevada (CSN) has an interim chapter growing under the leadership of Chris Bullet.  “I’m excited for SSDP and our presence on the West Charleston campus. The CSN SSDP always has its doors open to all students willing to connect and get involved,” said Chris. His interests and perspective help set the tone of the CSN chapter distinguishing it in a unique and positive way. Students for Liberty (SFL) Campus coordinator and past Nevada Cannabis Student of the Month, Andrew Lea, will be lending his support to the recruitment effort and has agreed to help CSN SSDP get up and running. “I’m starting a Gary Johnson chapter at CSN and I’m sure many of the members I recruit will want to join SSDP as well. SFL Rewards me for every student organization I assist with,” said Andrew. Look for CSN SSDP on facebook.

The returning SSDP chapter at Nevada State College (NSC) offers leadership opportunities for new recruits. NSC criminal justice professor and Scorpion’s CAN faculty adviser, is the last man standing from the controversial student organization that burst onto the scene last fall. “This is a watershed year for the movement in Nevada,” said the professor. He’s an essential component in the organizational rebuild taking place at NSC. Up north President Josh McCoy leads the UNR SSDP chapter. They’ve recruited a handful of leadership and are in the process of identifying a faculty adviser.

If you’re interested in being involved with an SSDP chapter at your college or finding out more about it contact:

The October Nevada Cannabis Student of the Month is UNLV Senior and Inyo Fine Cannabis Dispensary lead point of sale, Jessie Stephin. Her field of study is the Science of Business with a focus in management. She’s been involved in the cannabis business for over a year and has witnessed its growth first hand.

“I enjoy being involved with medical marijuana in Nevada because we are in the beginning stages of a booming industry and we are setting an example for other non-legal states to follow,” said Jessie. After reading in Vegas Cannabis Magazine about Nevada students actively engaging the local cannabis industry Jessie decided to start an SSDP chapter at her college and became an executive officer after being nominated secretary of the organization. “I would like for Nevada to take another step forward to showing acceptance of this non-harmful, medicinal plant,” said the student activist.

Weed like to congratulate Jessie and her fiancé Sheldon on their upcoming wedding. Like Jessie, Sheldon is actively involved in the local industry and works with Inyo Fine Cannabis Dispensary. He plans to launch a YouTube series interviewing and smoking with different people from the cannabis community. Congratulations you two.



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