Graduation Date

Fall 12-13-2021

Grading Professor

Greg David

Subject Concentration

Business & Economics

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


This capstone will explore how New York can navigate a new landscape that accepts recreational marijuana while also dealing with an illegal pot market that can better serve the state with less arrests and a more seamless rollout. The capstone will also discuss how people of color – already targeted and arrested at a disproportionate rate for misdemeanor non-violent drug related crimes – will navigate this landscape. With less access to capital to start businesses of their own or buy/rent property, will New York perhaps introduce or entertain a program to subsidize such an effort? California has said that the state’s law enforcement committee is aware of the negative results stemming from the war on drugs on communities of color, but yet they still battle a thriving illegal market. I want to interview business owners, both new to the industry and experienced, law enforcement and regular people that live in communities where the illegal market is their primary source. As New York is only beginning to put in place the infrastructure for a legal marijuana market, it is a great time to explore this topic to lay the groundwork for a more equitable and fair market for consumers, specifically of color.

I plan to produce this assignment in text form with a secondary audio element. I would like to provide a visual representation of where the money is coming from and specifically from which investors/corporations which will further my discussion of a legal and illegal pot market potentially existing alongside one another.



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