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Huntsman Hall on Sept. 30, 2020. Credit: Max Mester

The Wharton School has launched a new online program, Business in the Metaverse Economy, which will explore the growing reach of virtual reality in global markets. 

According to an article released by Wharton, this six-week certificate program held by Wharton's Aresty Institute of Executive Education includes six industry case studies and over 50 program lecture videos that feature both Wharton faculty and industry experts from Adobe, The Wall Street Journal, Unity, and others. Participants in the program will have firsthand use of metaverse technology through immersion activities accessible by a computer. The course will focus on the associated economic and technological elements that drive the current and future metaverse. 

Wharton professor Kevin Werbach, the Business in the Metaverse Economy program’s academic director, said in a statement released by Wharton that, “We designed this program for business professionals and executives from a range of backgrounds, including finance, management, and tech.” According to Werbach, the goal of the program is to “equip business leaders, consultants, and entrepreneurs with an understanding of the impending opportunities the metaverse brings, as well as the practical knowledge to build solutions of value.” 

The course begins on Sept. 12, with a tuition of $4,500. All metaverse activities can be accessed through a computer, and do not require a virtual reality headset. Participants do not receive credit for the course but will receive a digital credential from Wharton Executive Education and six Continuing Education Units. 

Wharton developed the curriculum in partnership with the Prysm Group, an economic consulting firm specializing in emerging virtual technologies. Prysm Group partnered with Penn last year to create a blockchain economics certificate for professionals, Economics of Blockchain and Digital Assets, which could be paid for with cryptocurrency.

With the launch of the online program, Penn becomes the first Ivy League school to lead a course on the topic of metaverse technology. The program comes after Stanford introduced a similar course, in which lecture time was devoted to experiences and discussions led on virtual reality headsets. 

The Wharton course program is currently open for enrollment.