World Education Services Pilots Blockchain-Based Digital Badges for Internationally Educated Students and Professionals
NEW YORK, NY (GLOBE NEWSWIRE – May 30, 2018) — World Education Services (WES) has announced plans to offer blockchain-based digital badges to qualified WES clients. WES, which evaluates international education qualifications and advocates for their recognition in the U.S. and Canada, is offering the badges through Credly, a leading provider of online credentials.
“WES has provided internationally educated individuals with high-quality credential evaluation reports for 44 years,” said Mariam Assefa, executive director of WES. “Digital badges are a natural extension of that work. They allow holders to make their international educational qualifications both visible and verifiable online, and to share them when and how they want. Blockchain is an added value. It allows us to ensure the integrity of WES-issued educational verifications even online.”
The blockchain that backs WES digital badges is similar to the technology behind Bitcoin. It records and encrypts “blocks” of information on a digital timeline—“the chain” in blockchain.
Multiple security mechanisms protect these blockchain-based digital badges. For instance, one block of information cannot be altered without altering the rest of the chain; the use of cryptographic hashes means no personally identifiable information is recorded to the blockchain; and distributed storage on a decentralized network minimizes hacking threats.
WES digital badges, which can be displayed on social media platforms such as LinkedIn, will enable holders to provide secure, one-click verification of their internationally earned educational credentials to employers and others.
“As individuals and organizations leverage digital credentials to unlock opportunities, blockchain brings another, important layer of validation and trust that is especially relevant to international audiences,” said Jonathan Finkelstein, Founder & CEO of Credly.
WES is issuing the first set of digital badges to a limited number of clients as part of a small pilot program. The goal of the pilot is to better understand the needs of badge holders, employers, admissions personnel, and others. WES will make badges available to a broader set of clients after completion of the pilot.
World Education Services (WES) is a non-profit organization, founded in 1974. WES evaluates and advocates for the recognition of international education qualifications in the U.S. and Canada, and has provided evaluations to almost two million individuals worldwide. WES credential evaluations are recognized by 2,500 academic, business, and governmental institutions around the globe.