According to the press release published on May 30, the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania has officially introduced a new online program focusing on fintech in general, which also includes digital currencies and the distributed ledger technology (DLT).
As the acceptance and popularity of cryptocurrency and its underlying blockchain technology increases, the need to study it in more detail also becomes necessary. In light of that necessity, several universities around the globe are offering courses on the new technology. Among them is an Ivy League university from United States, the University of Pennsylvania.
The online program is dubbed “Fintech: Foundations and Applications of Financial Technologies” and includes lectures as well as case studies on a wide variety of topics including payments, cryptocurreny, crowdfunding, blockchain technology among others.
The course, in addition to being taught by the very capable lecturers from the Wharton School itself, also features speakers hailing from leading companies of the industry. The payment processor Square, marketplace lender CommonBond and investment advisory firm Vanguard are a few of the important names in Wharton’s blockchain endeavor. Industrial players, owing to their hands-on experience, have the ability to provide candid insight on the topics in focus.
According to Anne Trumbore, senior director of Wharton Online, the fundamental reason behind launching the program is the multi-faceted approach towards the education of financial technology. The school only recently developed Stevens Center for Innovation in Finance, which is dedicated to conducting research on the new financial technologies and to encourage further collaboration, discovery, and impact in this emerging field.
Faculty Director David Musto, Ronald O. Perelman Professor in Finance and faculty director of the Stevens Center for Innovation in Finance, said in the press release:
Wharton is committed to leading the future of finance. The Fintech Specialization leverages the knowledge of our renowned Wharton faculty providing real-world knowledge to the benefit of learners around the globe.
Furthermore, the course is purportedly designed not only for students but for the working professionals as well. The press release highlighted that the Fintech Specialization is aimed at current students, small business owners and anyone interested in gaining fundamental knowledge of financial technologies.
The prestigious school of the University of Pennsylvania isn’t the only Ivy League to incorporate the latest technologies into their curricula. Princeton University is also offering a program that spans over 11 weeks, called Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency Technologies. It is financial technologies 101 of sorts, as it will answer the basic questions focusing on the mainstream cryptocurrency Bitcoin, like how does Bitcoin work? What makes Bitcoin different? How secure are your Bitcoins? How anonymous are Bitcoin users? What might the future hold?
The Wharton School has just joined the array of educational institutes that have already introduced the study of financial technologies into their system. In fact, only earlier this month, Bahçeşehir University (BAU) in Turkey reportedly opened a blockchain center at the Boston’s Northeastern University (NEU). One of the aims of the center is to provide informational support on blockchain technology.
In addition to that, the BAU–NEU Blockchain Laboratory’s intent is to apply for funds in three geographical territories, United States, Turkey and the European Union. While commenting on the cooperation and the importance of blockchain technology, Chair of the BAU Board of Trustees Enver Yücel said:
[Blockchain] will directly change all sectors from logistics to trade, from education to health, from energy to agriculture where we need to keep our products and people’s information in a safe environment.
Another university with a focused curriculum on financial technologies is the University of Nicosia, in Cyprus. Back in 2014, the largest private university in the country introduced Master in Digital Currency. The degree was specifically designed to help financial services and business professionals, entrepreneurs, government officials, and public administrators to develop a better and a deeper understanding of the technical aspects underpinning the newest form of currency.
The University of Hong Kong (HKU) is one of the leading universities in the region of Asia, and has initiated several online courses focused on financial technologies through their very own education platform, edX. Introduction to FinTech, FinTech Ethics and Risks and Blockchain and FinTech: Basics, Applications, and Limitations, are the courses included in their curriculum.
The importance and application of financial technologies is growing every day, and the fact that renowned universities from all over the world are dedicating a space for them in their curriculum is a proof of that.