Lander, WY – Small-town Wyoming Catholic College has announced plans to create its own currency, to be known as the “WSC” or “Work Study Credit.” According to the school’s executive vice president Saul H. Ciwoknot, the move is necessary “both due to our growing size and number of students as well as our expanding slew of businesses in Lander and around Wyoming.”
While it’s unusual for an organization to start a currency, a task typically reserved for countries, Ciwoknot argues that Wyoming Catholic College is uniquely placed to do so, its large student work-study program, strong property and business holdings, and commitment to avoid federal student financial aid “make us well-suited to continue in a direction of greater financial independence and stability against a weakening and ever more turbulent global financial system,” he added.
“WCC isn’t fully disconnecting from the rest of the outside financial world with the introduction of its own currency,” external affairs coordinator Mark Rusanka clarified. “We’ll continue to pay external bills in US dollars and allow students and benefactors to pay us in dollars. We’re merely creating an additional option for students to make payments amongst themselves and with school businesses. If our new currency’s bills and coins gain acceptance beyond the student body, however, that is icing on the cake.”
Some details have yet to be worked out about the manufacture of bills and coins for the new college currency, but the basic idea of how it will work and hold value is simple. “Rather than a gold-standard or a mere fiat currency,” Ciwoknot explained, “each unit credit of WCC ‘WSC’ will be backed by real work hours performed by actual students beginning with the work-study program, as with the name ‘work study credit.’ Payments to students for their work will be made in ‘WSCs’ students will have the option to either give these back directly to the college to pay portions of tuition or take the money out in coins and bills that can be used at any school-related business or to pay any other school related expense, fine, or fee. Eventually we’ll expand to paying faculty and staff in WSCs and we hope, maybe, someday to start using them on a larger basis outside of the college.
Because of this strict “work-standard” basis of value, WSCs are not expected to see any inflation, although their currency exchange could fluctuate based on inflation occurring in other currencies and economies. At their introduction, one work-study credit will equal $10 in U.S. dollars with students in the work-study program being paid one credit per hour worked. (Supervisors will earn 1.2 credits.) In order to facilitate easier exchange, the school financial committee producing the currency plans to produce bills with values of 1, 10, 20, and 150 credits as well as coins of fractional credit value in likely denominations of ¼, 1/10, and 1/100 credit units.
Many transactions in the new currency will not be made with paper bills or coins, for example, direct credits of hours worked against tuition being possible on a spreadsheet without using any bills, but school officials are adamant that Work-Study Credits are not a cryptocurrency. “That’s against our technology policy, so obviously we’re not going there,” Rusanka commented. “WSCs are the currency of the future, but a future that respects its past, not some actually tyrannical digital currency and control future.”
The currency is expected to be fully launched and operational by the end of this coming August at the beginning of the 2022-2023 school year.