Amanda C. had been working in the banking industry in sales for almost two years and felt unfulfilled. As a member of the experiential sales team she worked at numerous events, “If you’re trying to envision it I was one of those people that you pretended not to see when you walked by. You know the ones you actively avoid like the plague. And if you did in fact do this - don’t worry I do the same thing,” she said. Although her job allowed her to experience things like fulfilling her 90s baby dream of meeting Eric and Sean from Boy Meets World at Comic Con, seeing Michelle Obama and Shonda Rhimes speak at the PA Women’s Conference, or taking on her fear of heights in a hot air balloon at a festival in New Jersey; she still knew something was missing.
Amanda graduated from Indiana University of Pennsylvania where she received a degree in English and Writing. “An English major is different from most in that you can choose to write about almost any topic - in essence educating yourself on anything that strikes your fancy. I had developed an interest in Marijuana and decided that I would like to know more about what made something so harmless so taboo. I didn’t realize that writing that 20 page research paper was going to lay the groundwork for what would eventually become my career!” she exclaimed.
After graduating, Amanda moved back to Delaware County to regroup and asses her future plans. “This question is big for all college graduates, however even more intimidating for someone who holds a degree in English,” she said. After weeks of agonizing over what she wanted to do, it hit her out the blue as do most great ideas, “ With all of this knowledge I had accumulated from my time writing about the Marijuana Industry, combined with the passion I already had - the answer was clear.” She also feels that fate played a small part in her path as well. Amanda grew up down the street from local Philly activist N.A. Poe, who had helped draft Philadelphia’s decriminalization bill, and reached out to him for direction. He had suggested that she tag along to a Women Grow meeting, a networking organization created for women to help provide them with industry opportunities. There she introduced herself to the chair-woman at the time who graciously granted her a position with the Philadelphia Chapter moving forward. “It was at one of these meetings that I met the Director of Dispensary Operations for a New Jersey organization and planted my first official roots in the Marijuana Industry (pun absolutely intended).”
While in New Jersey, Amanda worked as a Dispensary Associate and Patient Specialist. “I learned a great deal about the effectiveness of Marijuana as a holistic medicine and the importance of dispensary staff to patients; even more so the integrity of the knowledge they hold. I took it upon myself to become as educated as I could be on how this medicine could help each new patient that I worked with.” It was here that she discovered the harsh stigma that surrounds Marijuana also stigmatizes those that need it most. This realization and her want to change it, fuelled her hunger for knowledge on how to play a bigger part in the industry.
“My quest led me to attending the National Women Grow Summit held in Denver, Colorado,” she said. She had the opportunity to interact with some of the top female marijuana executives (primarily from the West Coast) and see how much of an impact they were making for both women in business and the Marijuana Industry. “It was at this summit that I knew I had found the right industry, but also came to the realization that my opportunities in New Jersey were limited. I chose to leave the dispensary a few months later to grow my resume and hopefully end up back in the industry that held such a special place in my heart. Two years later I found my way to the TerraVida family and a job that I love,” she stated. Amanda now works as the Marketing and Events Coordinator at TerraVida headquarters.
Medical Marijuana has changed Amanda’s life in so many ways. “I have always struggled with anxiety and depression and had tried pharmaceuticals but hated the way they made me feel,” she stated. A major car accident and four years of playing rugby had left her back in ugly shape. With her anxiety agitated and panic attacks becoming more regular, she found that the only thing that worked for her was high THC products and a daily routine of CBD tinctures in the morning and night. “With the help of Medical Marijuana I now have control over my anxiety and don’t have to take any anti-anxiety or antidepressant medications. I have good and bad days with my back and although it is a little worse for the wear being a patient in this program has made sure that nothing holds me back.”
Like any typical English graduate, Amanda enjoys writing in her free time. She also enjoys traveling to new places and putting her photography skills to use. “I took a solo road trip to Maine and now that I have conquered most of the East Coast my sights are set on seeing the rest of the country.”