An international education initiative, designed to train the next generation of blockchain developers, has announced that TRON and the Stellar Development Foundation are among the inaugural thirteen companies who will work collectively to provide skills and expertise for the benefit of the industry.
As well as TRON (TRX) and Stellar (XLM), other Alliance cryptocurrency companies include Hedera (HBAR), ICON (ICX), Wanchain (WAN), and Ontology (ONT). There are also commercial and development companies like Emurgo and ETC Lab. Other members include Harmony One, Nervos, Orbs, LTO Network, and NEM (XEM).
Education, Education, Education
MouseBelt is an accelerator for brand-new startups – as well as blockchain initiatives for existing companies – that has a team of fifty engineers to build products for companies all around the world.
Ashlie Meredith, Director of MouseBelt University, told Crypto Briefing that the idea of an Education Alliance came about after realizing there was “…probably a lot of really good projects going on at universities because that’s where a lot of innovation happens”.
After talking to Presidents of Blockchain Societies in the US and Canada, MouseBelt found they were all “…saying the same thing”. Frustrated with the lack of educational resources available for blockchain development, students were mostly teaching themselves blockchain because the “slow and bureaucratic” universities took too long to develop accredited courses.
MouseBelt began by offering sponsorship agreements for meetups at thirteen schools across North America, as well as some support for hackathons and conferences at the beginning of the last academic year.
“We started the university programme to sponsor their events and get a conversation going,” explained Meredith. But that has now extended into an alliance of sixty-eight schools in more than fourteen countries, with universities in Europe, Singapore and Korea offering courses in all aspects of the industry. Meredith herself runs a course in event management and engagement with other crypto-users.
MouseBelt is now talking to universities, getting them on-board with official courses. They have already signed official partnerships with engineering departments at three universities and are currently trying to establish a base in Latin America too.
With clear engagement from universities, the Education Alliance is intended to extend the availability and depth of courses. Meredith said courses on Solidity were frequently in demand and the aim is for companies actively involved in the space to connect with students, guiding them on the technology and even provide office hours or online seminars.
What do the Alliance members get out of it?
Nikhil Saraf, Principal Engineer at SDF, said they were already working on devoting resources to the Education Alliance, as it complemented their existing initiatives to encourage developers into learning blockchain skills.
“At the end of the day we’re building a community”, he said, “…and with this alliance we can get more students involved and teach them best practices on blockchain and how to develop on Stellar.”
Although SDF has not clearly articulated what its role in the Alliance will be, they did not see its purpose as recruiting programmers. Saraf mentioned that they were interested in the positive benefits it would bring to the whole space.
That said, he hoped it would make Stellar relevant to the next generation of blockchain developers; and they would be open to beginning conversations with promising projects.
“We want them to do their thing with that knowledge, hopefully on Stellar,” he added.
Kicking off this week, the new Education Alliance just had their first virtual meetup – an event that members are expected to attend to help coordinate the direction of education.
Although every company will be looking to take something slightly different from the Alliance, Meredith said that they wanted members who cared about “…the ethos of what blockchain is trying to do”, whether that’s through data privacy or financial sovereignty.