Today the Texas Bitcoin Foundation (TBF) and Texas State Technical College (TSTC) announced the launch of the first professional certifications in bitcoin mining offered by any institution of higher education anywhere in the world.
The programs, generously funded by philanthropists Felicia and Gideon Powell, will prepare students for employment by the growing number of bitcoin mining companies that operate in Texas.
Over the past several years, Texas has become a world leader in bitcoin mining as local mining companies have been founded and large international bitcoin companies have relocated to Texas. Miners cite a good regulatory framework, abundant energy, relatively low energy costs, and a capable workforce as reasons why Texas is a preferred jurisdiction to mine bitcoin.
Gideon O. Powell, Chairman and CEO of Cholla Inc. and a bitcoin advocate, explained why the TSTC initiative sets Texas apart:
“Texas is an energy powerhouse, and bitcoin mining is an emerging energy business already providing jobs, economic development in rural communities, and improving the resilience of the ERCOT grid. My wife and I value Texas State Technical College’s focus on the needs of the Bitcoin mining industry and are excited to support their innovative program. We are committed to supporting initiatives that ensure Texas stays a world leader in energy innovation and are eager to continue learning, improving, and scaling mutually-beneficial programs for decades to come.”
The Texas Bitcoin Foundation, a public charity focused on bitcoin-related research and education, sourced funding and facilitated curriculum development for the new professional certification programs by spearheading knowledge transfer between leading Texas-based bitcoin mining companies and TSTC leadership.
Natalie Smolenski, founder and executive director of the Texas Bitcoin Foundation, said, “Texas has taken the lead globally by welcoming bitcoin miners to our great state. Our natural resources and friendly regulatory climate certainly provide great benefits for miners, but we also have a world-class labor force that is skilled in just the ways required by this growing industry.”
Cledia Hernandez, associate vice chancellor for External Relations and Workforce Development at TSTC, added that keeping pace with emerging technologies is part of the college’s mission:
“TSTC remains at the forefront of innovation as we train the next generation of Texas talent,” she said. “As with other Texas industries, we want to ensure that Texas has the workforce it needs by providing valuable technical skills in order to help more Texans get employed.”
TSTC is in the process of recruiting students for several bitcoin mining certificate programs scheduled to begin early 2023. Training will focus on Bitcoin Mining Operations, Software, Hardware, and Electrical Power. As students move through the programs and are hired by Texas-based bitcoin miners, TSTC will expand its training offerings to meet industry demand.
For more information about TSTC’s bitcoin mining certification programs, visit TSTC’s website at https://www.tstc.edu/workforcetraining/.
For more information about the Texas Bitcoin Foundation, visit https://www.txbitcoinfoundation.org/.
For more information about Cholla Petroleum, visit https://www.chollapetro.com/.
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