Jack Dorsey and Jay Z launch The Bitcoin Academy

Jack Dorsey and Jay Z founded a Bitcoin academy that offers free lessons to New York’s low-income individuals. Jack Dorsey and Jay Z (Shawn Carter) announced this new academy to their followers with their tweets. The Bitcoin Academy launches at Marcy Houses, the public housing complex where Jay Z grew up.

The classes, which will take place both physically and online, will run from the end of June to September. These classes, which will be held twice a week, are aimed at achieving their own financial freedom. The trainers of the academy are Lamar Wilson, the manager of Black Bitcoin Billionaire, and Najah J. Roberts, the founder of the Crypto Blockchain Plug.

Participants will be offered smartphones, MiFi devices to help them connect to the internet, a small amount of Bitcoin and a one-year data package as part of the program. The academy plans to educate children as well as adults about cryptocurrencies. In this context, with weekend programs, children in the region will be more conscious about the issue.

The content of the curriculum will vary according to the knowledge level, past experiences and social environment of the participants. But it will basically cover the introduction to cryptocurrencies, the working principles of blockchain, and how fraud can be detected.

The operation management of the academy, which is funded by Jack Dorsey and Jay-Z, will be run by the Shawn Carter Foundation, co-founded and CEO by Jay-Z’s mother, Gloria Carter.

Many criticized the encouragement of people struggling financially in unfavorable conditions to use cryptocurrencies on the occasion of this academy, due to the fluctuation in prices in the cryptocurrency market. People on Twitter argue that the demographic living in Marcy Houses needs other solutions and supports instead of these trainings. Criticisms are that those who attend the trainings will lose their tiny savings in the cryptocurrency market.

The Bitcoin Academy, on the other hand, argues that, contrary to the claims, training is provided for these people to protect themselves in the market and act consciously.

“Bitcoin is becoming a critical tool for many in Africa and Central and South America. We believe the same potential exists within communities in the US. Our goal is to prove that making powerful tools more available to people enables them to build greater independence,” Dorsey said. 

The Bitcoin Academy isn’t the first collaboration between Jack Dorsey and Jay-Z. Jack Dorsey aspired to Jay-Z’s online music platform Tidal in 2020. In March 2021, Jack Dorsey’s company Square bought Tidal for $297 million. The duo also announced a 500 BTC ₿trust fund dedicated to Bitcoin developments in Africa and India in February 2021.

Written by Sophie Blake


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