We talk to a lot of people trying to break into the cannabis industry. It’s our job to get people hired, after all. The question we receive most often here at Vangst is, “How do I get started in the cannabis industry?”

So we’ve made it easy for you and break it down here.

If you’re looking to work at a Colorado location where THC product is grown, extracted, sold, or present in virtually any way, the first thing you’ll need to do is get your MED Employee License

You do not need a license for CBD work if there is no THC, but all jobs related to THC products require employees to have a MED license. 

Basically this is your key to being legally permitted to work for any cannabis business, whether it’s at a grow site or a dispensary.

Oh, and it’s the only way you can get paid good money for your hard work – which is the goal here, if we’re all on the same page.

Obtaining a MED employee license requires disclosing any past criminal history. But some dings on your record won’t necessarily disqualify your application. However, the powers that be are particular about what qualifies as an official record and not providing the correct document could get your application rejected. Don’t trust a an online database to produce the documents.

Keep reading to learn how to get your MED badge in Colorado!

For most cannabis jobs, employers won’t even look at job applicants without a MED badge, officially known as a MED Employee License. Avoid this awkward situation by being prepared and following these steps!


Through April 18 2020, Colorado MED Business operations will continue and services to the public will remain available but MED office lobbies will not be open to the public. Applications will be accepted via mail and email, and fingerprinting must be completed with a 3rd party service. To learn more about temporary process updates, visit the MED Employee License page.


Types of Licenses:

This is new for 2020! Before, Colorado divided the licenses types into Key and Support Badges. Now, there is only one licenses for everyone. It’s called the MED Employee License. The fee for the licenses is $100. 

Follow these easy steps and you’ll be on your way to working in cannabis in no time!

Step One: Check your eligibility for a MED license.

The first part is easy: Live in Colorado. You must be a Colorado resident with a valid state ID when applying for a MED license. Have your Social Security number handy, too!

You also must meet the following requirements:

  • Be at least 21 years old.
  • Have not served a felony in the last three years.
  • Are not a licensed physician making patient recommendations.
  • Have never had your authority to act as a primary caregiver revoked by the state.
  • Are not the spouse or child, living in the house with any employee of the MED.
  • Are not a police officer, sheriff, deputy sheriff, or prosecuting officer.
  • Are not an officer or employee of the marijuana state licensing authority or a local licensing authority.

Always read the fine print. We suggest reading through the entire application below to make sure you’re fully eligible to obtain a MED license before you begin to fill it out.

Step Two: Complete and sign an application.

Yes, it’s paperwork. But everything’s more fun in cannabis – and you want a job, right? Eyes on the prize.

The application can be found here on the Colorado official state website.

Step Three: Make an appointment at a MED office.

Lucky for you, there are four MED offices choose from here in Colorado! They have offices in Lakewood, Longmont, Colorado Springs, and Grand Junction.

If you’re heading to the Lakewood office, send an email to to schedule an appointment.

For other locations, call the following numbers to schedule an appointment:

Colorado Springs: (719) 570-5622
Longmont: (303) 866-2274
Grand Junction:  (970) 248-7181

Step Four: Submit your application and application fee of $100.

You can pay with cash, check, or money order depending on the location!

Exact cash is accepted at the Lakewood office in addition to check, money order, or credit card. The other locations will accept checks or money orders made payable to Colorado Department of Revenue (DOR).

At your appointment, you’ll have your photo and fingerprints taken for state records after submitting all of your documentation.

Step Five: Receive your MED badge in the mail!

Once all documentation is submitted, fees are paid, and the state completes a background check, you’re good to go. If (and when) you pass, you’ll receive your badge directly by mail.

And that’s that! You’re now equipped with everything you need to know about how to get your MED badge in Colorado.

Got Your Badge? Now It’s time to Apply!
Visit today to start searching for a dream job near you.