“I can’t believe how easy this crypto stuff is,” exclaimed one student, “I traded my diploma for a picture of a funny monkey and now I’m going to be rich!”
Photo by Maria Dhilla
On Thursday, Chancellor Khosla announced that transcripts and degrees for UCSD students will be offered exclusively as non-fungible tokens (NFTs). The new Crypto-Reinforced University Data system, or CRUD, will allow students to purchase copies of their transcripts and diplomas online for a flat fee of one KhoslaCoin.
The decision comes after the decision to move towards a cryptocurrency-based system for DIning Dollars, which sparked controversy among students after the crash of KhoslaCoin left many unable to afford food. Khosla announced that it aims to reduce friction for students in acquiring these important documents, stating, “Over are the days of losing your transcripts in the mail, having your diploma arrive folded in half, and needing to use the old ‘my dog ate my degree’ excuse. Now, getting a copy of your diploma is as easy as going online and outbidding your fellow students.”
Khosla also touted the environmental benefits of the CRUD system, stating that the reduced paper waste from using all-digital copies of transcripts and diplomas will help UCSD reach its sustainability goals. “The environment has always been important to UCSD, which was a big factor in the decision to develop CRUD,” stated Khosla. When asked if the NFTbased system’s acronym had any correlation with UCSD’s wastewater COVID-19 detection system, the chancellor refused to comment.
While the CRUD program has yet to go into effect, it has already received a large amount of criticism from students. “I can’t believe UCSD has decided to jump the gun on this,” complained Bithany Coiner, a fourth-year student at Revelle. “I just hope that my KhoslaCoin holds its value until I can buy my diploma — I can’t afford to get screwed over by another market crash like the last one.” Other students criticized Chancellor Khosla’s claims regarding the environmental benefits of CRUD, with many pointing out the environmental impacts of cryptocurrency. “So let me get this straight — instead of chopping down a couple trees, UCSD would rather spew literal tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere just so that students can get their transcripts? I’m not surprised at all, I always knew UCSD was in the pocket of big energy companies,” stated Johnny Greenthumb, a third-year environmental sciences student.
Although the NFT-based program has been heavily criticized, some students welcome the implementation of CRUD. “I used to stay awake at night, worrying that my degree would be a waste of money,” said Rob Smith, a second-year psychology student. “But now that I know I can just auction my diploma off to the highest bidder if it all goes wrong, I’ve never slept better.” Other students feel the change is overdue, and are glad that the university has decided to switch. “I’ve always been a big proponent of cryptocurrency,” stated computer science student D’elon Musc. “Finally, I’ll have a reason to start explaining NFTs to people even when they didn’t ask me to!”
The program is set to go into effect at the end of the current school year, requiring the class of 2022 to acquire their diplomas through CRUD. While it mainly focuses on official documents, the university plans to transition additional items to CRUD, such as school merchandise, parking passes, and housing contracts. The debut of CRUD will feature an NFT auction of the Sun God statue, with a starting bid of 400 KhoslaCoin.