Great news for bitcoin enthusiasts. As the cryptocurrency craze is on the rise and more and more people google ‘buy bitcoins with credit card’ every day, some quite respectable organizations decide to look into this dynamic market and use it to their advantage. The latest initiative at Varna University of Management, Bulgaria, is just that. Targeting the most progressive social strata of our global society in order to lure open-minded young people to study in Bulgaria, VUM has recently decided to offer scholarships in bitcoins. Situated in the free-spirited Black Sea coast city of Varna, it is the first and only university in Bulgaria to do that. The sums might seem too modest to an American or Brit, but if you take into account the average salary, rent, living expenses and tuition fees in this small Eastern European country, you’ll find them pretty generous and might even start collecting the documents necessary for the application.
Varna University of Management is also going to accept payments in Bitcoin as soon as all technical and legal issues have been resolved. The trend is clearly visible in Europe, where Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts, Switzerland, announced they would accept Bitcoin as a means of payment as early as 2013, and ESMT Berlin, Germany, did it in December 2016.
It isn’t only about using Bitcoin as money though. VUM is also going to incorporate blockchain technology into their teaching programs, such as BSc in Software Engineering. Having first-hand experience with cutting-edge technologies is essential for soon-to-be young professionals on the labor market, and VUM as a future-oriented university as going to do their best to give them practice in this novel area. US universities launched blockchain and cryptocurrencies courses several years ago, some in 2014, so European universities now have to catch up. Bulgaria has a potential to be on the leading edge, on a par with Germany, the UK, Switzerland or Cyprus, at the same time having a comparative advantage of a lower cost of living. Most current courses are aimed at 4th-year Bachelor’s or 1st-year Master’s students, while some introductory ones are available for the general public in the form of MOOC online for free. The demand for graduates with expertise in blockchain is expected to grow, the interest for fast and cheap payment methods is here to stay.
Press release by Varna University of Management can be found here. University encourages prospective students to visit their scholarship page at https://vum.bg/tuition-fees/or contact the university at [email protected]