Oregon may have legalized the possession and sale of psilocybin, however, the raft of laws, policies, and procedures around the regulation of the drug is still being worked out. One portion of the industry that is already getting its stuff together is psilocybin facilitators. Rather than send you out in the woods with a bag full of mushrooms, and maybe a trip guide named Bush Sprite who went to Burningman twice, Oregon has established a 6-month training program and two-test licensing process to give their guides a stamp of approval.
They paid $7,900 in tuition, not including some private scholarships, and spent six months studying InnerTrek's approved curriculum. To get an actual license, which costs an additional $2,000 annually, they'll need to take two tests – one administered by InnerTrek and the other by the Oregon Health Authority. Only then can they sit with clients during psychedelic mushroom experiences at licensed service centers. As facilitators, they'll also be responsible for screening clients and discussing the experience before their sessions and talking with them afterward in a process called "integration," to help clients contextualize their psilocybin experience.
But none of this has stopped many people from beginning the process of working in Oregon's first-in-the-nation industry. According to InnerTrek's director of operations Nate Howard, InnerTrek's first cohort, which began in the fall, included just over 100 people. Howard, like all other InnerTrek staff including Eckert, also graduated from the program, meaning future students will be taught by people with active licenses in the state.
Graduates from other programs will soon follow, although neither the Oregon Health Authority nor the Higher Education Coordinating Commission, which regulate the training programs, have an estimate of the number of students who have enrolled. Angie Allbee, who leads the psilocybin service section at OHA, said 112 applicants have started the process of seeking facilitator licenses.