How Business Schools are Responding to Student-Interest in Crypto
2022 has been a tough year for the crypto market.
Bitcoin and Ethereum are down more than 50% since 2021—and many experts warn that crypto prices could drop even further.
While the value of crypto has plummeted, MBA interest for the digital currency hasn’t. Fortune recently highlighted how business schools are incorporating blockchain and crypto into their curricula, and what prospective students should look for in crypto content.
“There’s no question that there’s still a lot of uncertainty and immaturity and hype in the blockchain space,” Kevin Werbach, professor of legal studies and business ethics at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and director of the Wharton digital asset and blockchain project, tells Fortune. But despite the uncertainty, business schools are intent on incorporating blockchain into their curricula. “We need people that are going to work for big traditional firms who understand it, as well.”
WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN MBA PROGRAMS
Many business schools have already started integrating crypto content into their curricula, including Stanford, Columbia University, Fordham University (Gabelli), and Miami Herbert Business School at the University of Miami.
If you’re interested in working for a crypto startup, you’ll want to consider looking for training-focused initiatives, such as an accelerator program.
“Because of how quickly this field evolves, it’s important to seek training not taught solely by academics,” Anastassia Gliadkovskaya, of Fortune, says. “Like with other sectors, a program that brings in guest practitioners will help balance out the theoretical concepts with hands-on learning.”
Additionally, experts recommend taking location into consideration.
“Some schools are near major employers, offering a tailored curriculum to meet the demands of the local economy—and this proximity could be invaluable when job hunting,” Gliadkovskaya says. “Programs should also ideally be housed in schools with a naturally strong tech focus, and ones that do at least some research in the area.”
THE IMPORTANCE OF LEARNING ON THE JOB
Because crypto is still an evolving market, MBA grads will likely still have to learn on the job—even if they get exposure to content in B-school.
“A field as fast changing as crypto—no matter how much you learn in an educational program, you’re going to have to learn a tremendous amount on the job,” Werbach says.
In time, many experts say, blockchain will become an essential management strategy for many business—like supply chain coordination.
“These things will become so unexpectional, it will just be part of the normal business landscape,” Gregory LaBlanc, who is a lecturer at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business and the University of California—Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, tells Fortune.
Sources: Fortune, NextAdvisor
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