The project was developed to address Japan’s shortage of skilled individuals working on rapidly evolving technologies.
The University of Tokyo, popularly known as Todai, will begin offering a variety of study programs in the Metaverse later this year.
The classes will be available to students ranging from high school to adult learners in the workforce, according to a Saturday article from the local news outlet The Asahi Shimbun.
According to the outlet, the Metaverse study programs will not be given through its own dedicated faculty that offers degrees, but rather through Todai’s college of engineering and engineering-related graduate schools. Students who successfully finish the courses will be awarded certificates.
Todai’s project was created in response to a shortage of skilled personnel working on “digital transformation” and “advanced technologies.”
According to university administrators, studying in the Metaverse will also create a situation in which “everyone, regardless of age, gender, social standing, or location of residence, can learn about engineering and information science.”
Crypto and nonfungible tokens (NFTs) were not expressly mentioned, but given that the industry is frequently associated with the Metaverse and boasts a number of popular metaverse brands, blockchain-based platforms are likely to be discussed.
Junior-high and high-school students will be given an overview of the space, as well as information on potential career paths in engineering, science, and other relevant subjects. They will learn the material through a combination of online and in-person classes.
University students and those already in the workforce will be able to reskill/upskill through related online courses focusing on artificial intelligence (AI), next-generation communication technology, and entrepreneurship education.
There will also be an effort to encourage more women to enrol in the programs since a lack of female representation in engineering has been noted as a problem.
In recent months, there has been some notable Metaverse uses in Japan, as local citizens discover novel applications for the technology.
On Monday, Japan Today reported that the JACFA, a Fukuoka-based support group, has opened a virtual support room in the SecondLife Metaverse platform. The organization focuses on reintegrating Hikkikomori — reclusive persons who refuse to leave their homes — into society.
The issue has been recognized as a major societal concern in Japan, and the objective is to allow Hikkikomori to receive first assistance without the strain of face-to-face contact.
In April, it was also announced that 3,800 students from 29 trade schools in Niigata, including beauty, sports, technology, and hospitality, held their 2022 commencement ceremony in the Metaverse. The event was held online so that everyone could participate without the risk of contracting COVID-19.