POSTECH Issues Korea’s First Blockchain Degree Certificate
POSTECH is the first university to issue blockchain degree certificates in Korea.
On the 7th of February, the graduation ceremony for the academic year 2019 was scheduled and the university issued digital degree certificates to all students via email and Kakaotalk, a mobile instant messaging application. It was the first time that an institution issued its degree certificate on a blockchain to graduates.
Digital degree certificates cannot be counterfeited or tampered with. When a third party desires to verify the degree, the certificate holder needs to grant access. The blockchain-based certificate issuance service used by the university is called broof and it is developed by a venture company ICONLOOP founded by POSTECH alumnus Jong Hyup Kim. POSTECH introduced this service as a trial.
By using their service, a university can issue certificates of degrees without building a database, so it can simplify the service process which then saves cost. Also, graduates can access their information anywhere at any time. They can control who has access to their information and this has the advantage of protecting personal information.
The POSTECH Information Research Laboratories (PIRL) had already issued blockchain-based degree certificates to the graduates of POSTECH Blockchain Executive Program using the same service twice last year. The University is considering expanding the service to all academic administrative levels, from academic transcripts to degree verifications.
Meanwhile, the graduation ceremony was postponed to July 10th due to the novel coronavirus outbreak to prevent its spread and protect the students and faculty. The first day of the 2020 spring semester has also been postponed to March 2nd from its originally scheduled date of February 17th. The 2020 Matriculation Ceremony and the orientation for the new incoming students are cancelled as well. For those students who cannot attend the graduation ceremony in July, they can visit their academic department to receive their degree certificates.