Morehouse College is the first college to teach courses in the digital world of the metaverse.
According to Forbes, the metaverse is used to describe a combination of the virtual reality and mixed reality worlds accessed through a browser or headset, which allows people to have real time interactions and experiences across distance.
“The metaverse is what I call the world’s greatest playground. But besides that, what it really is, is the next iteration of the web,” said Muhsinah Morris, Ph.D., virtual reality program manager for Morehouse College.
Channel 2 Action News reporter, Dave Huddleston toured the digital version of the Morehouse College campus was able to see how students can study history in the Metaverse. Morris took Huddleston on a tour of a slave ship in the metaverse and was able to go below deck to see and hear what the conditions were like.
“And I think that people do want to know the history of us as Americans because we all have made significant contributions to this fabric of America. … To expand the story that we’re telling, to build confidence and understandings around how we’re all connected because we have a shared history in this country,” said Monique Earl Lewis, Ph.D., chair of Morehouse College’s Africana Studies and History Department.
Students Tahj Henry Jackson and Sid King told WSB-TV that learning in the metaverse gives them a deeper understanding of the past and future.
“It’s a whole new experience and you’re meeting and experiencing things first-hand, such as the Underground Railroad,” Jackson said.
“We can see that anything can happen, right?” King said.
Students at Morehouse are being equipped with the skills needed for the virtual future.
The Pew Research Center said by 2040, 54% of technology experts believe the metaverse will be a regular part of daily life for half a billion people.
“They need to know how to use it regardless of what field they’re in, regardless of whether they can code or not,” Morris said.
According to Citi, the metaverse economy could be worth $13 trillion by 2030.
As technology continues to change our world, Morehouse is working to make sure students keep up so they can have the best opportunities after college.
“They can create. They can produce. They can market. They can create social events. They can create a place of belonging in the community,” Morris said. “The future looks a lot like young people being able to come together from countries all over the world in one singular space.”