Marijuana is celebrated for its medicinal and health benefits. But how does marijuana affect students? Does marijuana have positive or negative effects on students? How does marijuana affect the academic performance of young people?
Marijuana has been legalized primarily because of its various medicinal and health benefits. Various studies have concluded on the positive effects of medical marijuana in the treatment and management of various conditions including seizures, mood disorders, and depression. There are even studies that showed marijuana can be beneficial in the treatment of cancer. Various strains of cannabis have been developed for the sole purpose of providing medicinal and health uses. Weekend Gardener’s list of strains is a good start to learn more about these strains of cannabis and their benefits.
With the legalization of marijuana use, many people have made the mistake to believe that marijuana is completely harmless. But this is not actually true. Marijuana has many benefits for the well-being of people, but as the saying goes, “Anything in excess is bad.” When it comes to academic performance, some study suggests that marijuana use among students may pose detrimental effects on their academic performance.
It is not all sunshine and daisies when it comes to using marijuana. Cannabis use can have a detrimental effect on anyone who will abuse it. As a comparison, studies have shown that red wine has antioxidant properties. However, abusing red wine is not a good thing. Alcoholism is a real and serious consequence of abusing the consumption of alcohol. For marijuana. it is the same thing. This plant has many important and helpful properties. But if one would abuse it, the results will be catastrophic.
What Does The Research On Marijuana And Marijuana Use Among Students Say About This?
With all the information about the benefits of consuming marijuana to one’s health, it is easy to forget that marijuana has more than 100 active compounds. These compounds have various effects on a person. For students, a study in 2011 revealed that marijuana use among young people could be detrimental to their studies.
The research was conducted by scientists at the University of Maryland. The researchers explored the substance use and activities of 1,200 young people in the university. The participants were freshmen college students.
To learn about the long-term effects of marijuana, the researchers followed these students from when they were freshmen students. The study ran for ten years, in which the researchers gathered all kinds of data on the participants’ drug use as well as various social and academic parameters.
The researchers correlated the participants’ drug use with their eventual success or failure in various aspects of their academic years and life after school in general. What they found was the use of marijuana, both frequently and occasionally can result in academic problems.
The investigations done by the researchers showed that academic outcomes worsen among students who consume marijuana frequently. This is in comparison to students who did not report drug use. The study found that students who reported smoking cannabis more than 15 times a month are most likely to drop out of college. This is double the likelihood for those who only smoked marijuana twice a month.
In terms of everyday school activities, the researchers also explored how marijuana sue has affected students. In their study, the researchers found that marijuana use can affect school performance among students who smoke weed. In college, students who reported taking this drug were found to be more likely to skip classes. The study also revealed that marijuana use is proportionately in parallel to the least time spent studying. Upon checking their grades, students who smoke weed have also earn lower grades on average as compared to their peers who did not consume marijuana.
Other than the consequences mentioned in the study, other experts have also warned about the cost of getting caught using marijuana on campus. Many universities have zero tolerance for substance abuse. While the country is now veering toward legalization of cannabis. Many of the higher institutions have not yet caught up and still insist on banning this herb on campus. Worse, students may get in serious trouble if they were caught using marijuana. There are universities that actually remove scholarships and other financial support to students who are caught smoking weed. In fact, in the Higher Education Act, ineligibility to receive federal financial aid or student loans is a punishment given to students who are caught using or in possession of weed. The law also ensures that students who are caught smoking weed will be restricted from involvement in any kind of work-study program.
How Should Universities And Other Academic Institutions Move Forward? Should We Ban Marijuana In Universities?
Given that the results of the study as well as the law are stacked against marijuana use, should academic institutions ban marijuana? Should students be prohibited from using marijuana?
College students are adults. In fact, they are illegible to vote. Taking this into consideration, the higher academic institutions must approach the students as adults who are capable of forming their own opinions and making their own decisions.
Instead of outright prohibiting students from smoking weed or banning marijuana from school, the better approach would be to intensify the information dissemination. Seminars and talks would help students understand the realities of consuming marijuana. This kind of discussion need not be solely centered on marijuana use, the topics of discussions may also cover other substances commonly consumed by students like alcohol and nicotine.
Substance abuse, whether it is with marijuana or alcohol, has detrimental effects on any person, not just the students. Banning marijuana or other substances such as tobacco or alcohol will not solve the problem. Students must be given the free will to think for themselves. With the right information, students can create make a better judgment. With facts at hand, people can make informed decisions for themselves and their future.
As well, one must take into consideration the students with a legitimate use for marijuana such as those with seizure illnesses and those suffering from depression. The universities cannot deny the positive effects of marijuana. Yes, there were negative effects, but everything under the sun has its pros and cons. Denying students their need for medical marijuana would be detrimental to their health and even pose real life and death concerns.
What is needed is to find the root cause of addiction. Substance abuse is not the root cause but a symptom of a deeper problem. Universities must help students deal with their personal problems through strengthened counseling programs. They can also help by informing everyone about the positive and negative about consuming marijuana.
As research institutions, universities are in a better position to widen the scientific knowledge about marijuana. It would be best if universities can set up programs to study marijuana to explore both its advantages and disadvantages.
Marijuana is helping many, but in the hands of uninformed, the use of this herb could easily result to substance abuse. As the country moves toward fully legalizing marijuana, it is very important for academic institutions to open the conversation about this herb, to widen the knowledge about marijuana through research, and to guide students to make the right decision through open communication, information dissemination and stronger student counseling program.