Canadian University to Issue Blockchain-Based Diplomas to Class of 2019

A Canadian tech institute will issue blockchain-based diplomas to its next graduating class, according to an official press release on June 13.

The Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT) has partnered with blockchain marketplace ODEM (On-Demand Education Marketplace) to provide blockchain-based copies of student diplomas for SAIT’s graduating class of 2019.
SAIT’s class of 2019, which is made up of over 4,800 students, will reportedly be able to use blockchain technology to share their official diplomas as needed, circumventing the need for alumni to request official documents from SAIT to send to recruiters and employers.

The students will receive the digital version of their certifications in tandem with a traditional paper copy.

ODEM CEO Richard Maaghul commented on how this gives students ownership of their diplomas, saying:

“We believe that students should have control over their own records, and blockchain technology makes that possible.”

The blockchain records will purportedly make the hiring process easier for employers, too, since they can easily verify the credentials of SAIT alumni as genuine.

ODEM and SAIT’s reportedly ran a pilot project in December, in which they used the Ethereum blockchain to test the process of issuing blockchain-based diplomas. 25 participants were drawn from the Pre-Employment Automotive Service Technician program.

Universities in other countries, such as Bahrain and Malta, have also begun to issue and store diplomas on blockchains. The University of Bahrain in particular announced that it was partnering with the startup Learning Machine to provide its blockchain diplomas.

Meanwhile in Malta, the entire country is set to store all educational certificates on a blockchain. The Maltese government partnered with Learning Machine as well, running a two year pilot program to keep certification records from all Maltese schools on a blockchain; this included certificates issued by churches, independent schools, and secondary schools in the country.

As recently reported by Cointelegraph, another university in Canada, the University of British Columbia, has begun a blockchain training program for its graduate- and PhD-level students. The program aims to train 139 students, over a six year period, to understand blockchain solutions for the following areas: health and wellness, clean energy, regulatory technology and Indigenous issues.