The University of Tokyo began offering a blockchain course at its graduate engineering school, thanks to an $800,000 donation from a consortium that includes the Ethereum Foundation and Japanese banking juggernaut Sumitomo Mitsui.
The class — called the “Blockсhain Innovation Donation Course” — was rolled out on November 1 and will run through October 2021, according to a statement by Sumitomo Mitsui.
Other corporate donors included Good Luck Three, JSS Corp., Zipper Corp., Hotlink Co., and Money Forward Inc.
The purpose of the blockchain course is to educate highly motivated, business-minded students with “outstanding talent in information mathematics” about fintech and the game-changing technology underpinning cryptocurrencies.
The University of Tokyo hopes to nurture future blockchain entrepreneurs by teaching them about decentralized networks and how to implement them socially.
Blockchain is a hot, trendy field of study right now, and many corporations are investing substantial amounts of money to promote the development and widespread adoption of blockchain.
Experts say the innovative technology could transform healthcare, banking, supply-chain management, and the entertainment industry.
In June 2018, Ripple, the blockchain-based payment network, donated $50 million to 17 universities around the world to launch a partnership called the University Blockchain Research Initiative. As CCN.com reported, Ripple made the donations in US dollars, not cryptocurrency.
The company said interest in blockchain is soaring as more people are discovering the vast potential of distributed ledger technology, including facilitating speedier cross-border payments.
In April 2018, Ripple also invested $25 million of its XRP cryptocurrency into Blockchain Capital Parallel IV, a $150 million fund that will invest in blockchain ventures.
Even “Old Money” like the Rockefeller family is investing in blockchain startups, as CCN.com reported.
Many top business schools around the world, including Wharton and Stanford, have expanded their MBA course offerings to include classes on bitcoin and blockchain, as CCN.com reported.
According to a recent Coinbase study, almost half of the world’s top universities now offer at least one cryptocurrency-related class.
Kevin Werbach, a professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, is currently teaching a class this semester called “Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, and Distributed Ledger Technology.”
“We’re at the point where there’s a critical mass to teach this domain,” Werbach told CNBC. “There will be a real phenomenon in business for the foreseeable future. And five years down the road, there won’t be too many major business schools that don’t offer similar classes.”
Similarly, John Jacobs — executive director of the Georgetown University Business School — said he has been inundated with calls from corporate recruiters asking for applicants who understand blockchain technology.
“Any world-class program is going to have to equip students in this field to compete,” Jacobs said. “It’s everywhere we turn around.”
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Last modified: July 13, 2020 1:39 PM UTC