University in Romania to allow students to pay tuition fees in cryptocurrency for first time
Students in Romania will be able to use cryptocurrency to pay their university tuition fees for the first time from July.
The Lucian Blaga University of Sibiu (ULBS) will become the first higher education institution in the country to offer the payment option when admissions begin for the next academic year this summer.
The move comes following a partnership between the university and a Sibiu-based start-up called Elrond.
Founded by a local team of researchers, entrepreneurs and programmers, Elrond is looking to make improvements to existing blockchain platforms like Bitcoin and Ethereum.
Virtual currency payments to the university will be made in EGLD, a cryptocurrency developed by the start-up.
In a statement, Prof. Dr. habil. Sorin Radu, rector of ULBS, said: “Our university has been and will continue to be a supporter of the community and local businesses, and the decision to develop this partnership with Elrond is in line with this strategy”.
As well as supporting local entrepreneurs, the university said was also looking to streamline administrative processes through digitalisation.
Under the news plans, ULBS will convert EGLD tokens into Romanian Lei through a payment processor at no extra charge for students and avoiding traditional bank charges.
While cryptocurrencies are notoriously volatile, the potential benefits using EGLD tokens to pay for tuition may prove attractive to a growning number of students in the future, not least because of low transaction costs and public verification of payments through blockchain technology.
“We recognise the great potential of ULBS students. Many of the Elrond team members are graduates of this university, some of them are currently associate professors of ULBS,” said Beniamin Mincu, CEO of Elrond, in a statement.
“We are pleased that through this collaboration we can offer students access to a technology that promises to have a significant positive impact on today’s society, but also on the next generation of graduates of the Sibian university and beyond”.