Aventis announces USD1M scholarship in support of Smobler’s Metaverse for Good initiative in The Sandbox
Three parties to sign MOU on September 20 to launch scholarship and 1st The Sandbox Academy in Singapore
SINGAPORE – September 13, 2022 – Aventis Graduate School, an award-winning graduate school and corporate training provider headquartered in Singapore announces a US$1M ASEAN scholarship in support of Smobler Studio’s Metaverse for Good initiative on The Sandbox. Smobler Studios is a leading metaverse architecture firm that builds in The Sandbox, a decentralized gaming world and open metaverse.
This initiative is the brainchild of Smobler’s founders Dr Loretta Chen and Ruel Sarmiento in line with their studio’s IDEALS – inclusion, diversity, equity, accessibility, leadership and sustainability. All NGOs, social enterprise and brands can participate in the Metaverse for Good if they pledge to support a worthy cause or charity. The digital real estate or LAND will be provided rent free for up to a year. The LAND is sponsored by the Octava Foundation, a private grantmaker based in Singapore whose vision is to empower children and youth with equitable opportunities to contribute to a better world. The Foundation has a 12 X 12 LAND – a unit of virtual real estate in The Sandbox metaverse – that will be developed by Smobler Studios.
Likewise, Aventis’ scholarship aims to empower working professionals across ASEAN. The bond-free scholarship will be awarded to qualified adult learners who are citizens of ASEAN excluding Singapore. The candidates will be selected based on the strength of their application, academic and professional background, overall potential and financial need. Priority will be given to needy students from developing ASEAN countries to provide relief and an added boost for those at a financial disadvantage to achieve success in life.
Samuel Teo, Chairman of Academic and Examination Board of Aventis Graduate School says, “Since our founding in 2007, education and continuous learning is always close to our hearts as it is the foundation for our learners to provide a better future for not just themselves but their family. We are dedicated to providing quality executive education to working professionals across the ASEAN region and want to use this scholarship to build deeper connections and engagement with our learners across ASEAN.”
Additionally, Aventis will also enter into a tripartite partnership with Smobler Studios and The Sandbox to establish the first The Sandbox Academy in Singapore. The academy will focus on developing talent and creators for the open metaverse. For starters, the academy will provide technical courses such as Voxel Art and Game Maker Certification and will later expand into more offerings to cater to jobs that will be created in the open metaverse.
Says Chen, who is Co-Founder of Smobler Studios and a professor, “Even as we push the frontiers of technology, we must deepen our connection to society by widening access to education which are the pillars of knowledge and human capital. I am extremely heartened by Aventis’ scholarship pledge to our metaverse for Good initiative and The Sandbox’s support of the Singapore academy that will lead to the development of a viable career ecosystem. All of us believe in co-creating a bigger, brighter, better future for all in this open metaverse.”
Sebastien Borget, who is Co-Founder and COO of The Sandbox says, "The metaverse promises a major disruption in how we will interact, communicate, play, learn, and earn. Yet, the metaverse cannot succeed without both great content and people, who are the center of this innovation. That is why we are deploying great effort to empower users, players, and creators through education to Web3 and the possibilities of The Sandbox, enabling the creation of a multitude of new jobs. This is why we are thrilled to see Aventis step in with this generous scholarship support, positioning ASEAN at the forefront of innovation."
The launch of the Aventis Metaverse for Good ASEAN scholarship and The Sandbox Academy will take place on September 20 at the Aventis campus in Orchard Road.
“This is an exciting new chapter for us and we are extremely grateful for the trust from our partners, Smobler Studios and The Sandbox. Through our tripartite partnership, we will be able to provide for ASEAN learners as well as train and place graduates to kickstart a career in the metaverse. We are actively seeking partners, educators, collaborators, and learners to join us in this exciting journey,” said Teo.
The metaverse has been the talk of the town since Facebook changed its name to Meta in October 2021 and pledged to invest $10 billion in its Reality Labs operation in 2022. Bloomberg Intelligence envisions the metaverse opportunity reaching $400 billion by 2024. Metaverse mania has reached Singapore with the announcement of DBS as the first Singapore company and bank to seal a partnership with The Sandbox to make a foray into the metaverse.
About Aventis Graduate School
Founded in 2007, Aventis is a graduate school headquartered in Singapore that champions human capital development. Aventis strives to make graduate and executive education affordable and accessible across Southeast Asia. With more than 60,000 learners, five esteemed university partners across USA and the UK and over 3,000 successful graduates, Aventis aims to be the leading graduate school for professionals in Asia. To Learn more, visit: www.aventis.edu.sg
About Smobler Studios
Smobler Studios is a metaverse architecture and creative design agency headquartered in Singapore. It specializes in creative ideation, design thinking, brand marketing and metaverse development for The Sandbox Game. Its recent clients include Mighty Jaxx, One Group, The Food Bank Singapore and Tools of Rock NFT amongst others. It is backed by The Sandbox, Brinc and Enjinstarter. To learn more, visit: www.smoblerstudios.com.
About The Sandbox
The Sandbox, a subsidiary of Animoca Brands, is one of the decentralized virtual worlds that has been fueling the recent growth of virtual real estate demand, having partnered with major IPs and brands including Warner Music Group, Ubisoft, The Rabbids, Gucci Vault, The Walking Dead, Snoop Dogg, Adidas, Deadmau5, Steve Aoki, Richie Hawtin, The Smurfs, Care Bears, Atari, ZEPETO, CryptoKitties, and more. Building on existing The Sandbox IP that has more than 40 million global installs on mobile, The Sandbox metaverse offers players and creators a decentralized and intuitive platform to create immersive 3D worlds and game experiences and to safely store, trade, and monetize their creations. For more information, please visit www.sandbox.game and follow the regular updates on Twitter, Medium, and Discord.
About Octava Foundation
Octava Foundation is a private grant maker based in Singapore. Its vision is to empower children and youth, so they have equitable opportunities to excel as citizens and contribute to a better world, irrespective of their socio-economic background. The Foundation specifically supports organizations and programmes that enable learning attainment, skills development and or employability for underserved children and youth. It also funds projects that have promise of impact and scale and strengthen the pillars of home, learning, and society. The Foundation also provides bursaries in the form of study awards to motivated youth from underserved communities to access tertiary education.
Ms Lim Chye Fen
PR & Branding Manager
Aventis Graduate School
(65) 9853 1370