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York College’s new Cannabinoid Chemistry program forms important partnership with Groff North America

March 15, 2022
A YCP chemistry student in the lab

York College of Pennsylvania’s new Cannabinoid Chemistry program will soon join forces with Steve Groff, a York County entrepreneur, farmer, and licensed surgeon known internationally for his work in hemp and medical cannabis. Groff has recently become a member of the College’s Chemistry Department Industry Advisory Council (CIAC); he and his team will give the keynote address at the CIAC’s spring meeting in April.

Groff is the founder, chair, and chief medical officer of Groff North America (GNA), a cannabis cultivation, extraction, and formulation company based in Red Lion. GNA cultivates, processes, and refines both cannabis and hemp for businesses and researchers who are registered to handle Schedule 1 drugs. It is one of three commercially focused companies with Schedule 1 registrations from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) for bulk cultivation of marijuana and the only company to further possess registration for patient dose manufacturing.

“Groff North America (GNA) is internationally known for their leading work in extraction of cannabinoids from hemp and medical cannabis,” said Jessica Fautch, associate professor and chair of the Chemistry Department. “Working with GNA will allow immediate access to hemp samples in various stages of extraction and refinement, and our connections through the CIAC will allow for new avenues for local internships in the field of cannabinoid chemistry and hemp science." 

York College’s Cannabinoid Chemistry major is addressing the growing demand for trained chemists in this field. The bachelor of science program is the first of its kind in Pennsylvania and within the mid-Atlantic region. Students in the program will specialize in natural production extraction, purification, and analysis. 

The benefits of attending York for its Cannabinoid Chemistry program include access to professional equipment at the College’s state-of-the-art laboratories, internship opportunities with companies in the cannabis trade like GNA, attendance at guest lectures with industry leaders like Groff, and development of in-demand skills that are transferable across professions and industries.

“The location of GNA provides ample opportunities for York College students to engage in experiential internships, research, and hands-on training in hemp analysis and extraction,” said Fautch. “As a global leader in cannabinoid research, GNA will inspire and drive publication-quality collaborative research with York College faculty and students.”