Students explore emerging cryptocurrency market


The cryptocurrency market is at an all-time high after existing for more than a decade. While some U-High students are sceptical, others are optimistic about cryptocurrency.

From letting people sell memes online to replacing an impoverished nation’s currency, cryptocurrency has been everywhere in the news lately. Over the past years, it has gone from a niche tech trend to an impressive economic force with its feet in art, politics, and the future of society.

With the market still on the rise, some U-High students see the crypto market as a lucrative investment opportunity.

After being around for little more than a decade, the cryptocurrency market is at an all time high as its practical uses grow more apparent. With money-hungry and impoverished nations like South Sudan or Venezuela rendering their currency almost useless, many leaders  are interested in cryptocurrency as a possible replacement for some national currencies. 

“We were experiencing hyperinflation over the pandemic,” sophomore Aditya Gupta said. “Governments were trying to compensate by pumping money into their economies, which really didn’t work out that well in the long run. That made me start looking at crypto.”

Cryptocurrencies are also being used in a drastically different, but possibly even more profitable fashion with the support of online entrepreneurs. Aspiring and established artists alike can use blockchain, the technology behind cryptocurrency, to create and sell nonfungible tokens, or NFTs, a unique digital creation. People with new ideas can create their very own currencies surprisingly easily. 

However, both of these practices can be used to scam over-hyped investors. 

“Blockchain makes it totally anonymous and encrypted, which could be a downside because it can be used for crime,” Aditya said. “It’s kinda like the dark web — it’s a double-edged sword. Anonymity is great for security, but it can also be used to do bad things.”

Prevalent scams, on top of its massive energy consumption, don’t help the image of cryptocurrency, causing many to be distrustful of the concept altogether. 

While sophomore David Ren appreciates that cryptocurrency is an impressive economic force and invests in it, even if ultimately he believes it won’t last. 

“I don’t really actually like the whole idea of crypto,” says David. “The market is getting pulled up by people pumping their money into it. It’s got people who trust it well enough, of course, until the bubble bursts.”

However, Aditya has more faith in the uses and usefulness of the technology. 

“Wait until it starts rising again for the third time,” says Aditya. “Then it won’t be a game anymore, but an actual, concrete currency.”