BSC News

From Student to Administrator: Zeinzu and the ApeLabs Journey

The new Assistant Dean of ApeLabs opened up to BSC News about his experience as a student and his personal transformation through the educational program.

ApeLabs’ Mission to Educate

Education on Web3 and crypto, and more specifically decentralized finance on BNB Chain, has found a new home in the form of ApeLabs. In response to the dearth of knowledge prevalent across the blockchain industry, ApeLabs is giving out certifications and hosting comprehensive lab courses to help users globally increase their understanding and find work in Web3. 

The full story from President and Teacher, Chimpin’ Chip of ApeSwap, is available on the BSC News Podcast. However, the Editorial Team sought out a different perspective and contacted Chip to get a student’s perspective. Chip spoke highly of the first valedictorian from the institution and someone who recently joined the administration as Assistant Dean, Zeinzu. BSC News sat down with Zeinzu to hear his story.

Here we reveal part one of our conversation with Zeinzu. We explore Zeinzu’s crypto beginnings, his experience through the application process, and onboarding, and his initial classroom experiences. Expect to see the second part soon.

Source: Zeinzu’s faculty page.


DeFi Beginnings

Zeinzu didn’t come to ApeLabs with a grand vision of his goals. He saw himself as a timid, unemployed former software worker who found himself in a difficult situation when the pandemic hit. Being from the Philipines, like many in his country, cryptocurrencies became a pathway for him to eke out a secondary form of income, or better yet, a primary source when times were tough.

On the whim and advice of some friends, Zeinzu entered the world of crypto through NFT gaming but found himself wanting more after a while. This led him to become, in his words, a DeFi Degen who chased high APYs around the ecosystem. His habits led him to endure ups and downs in the market but ultimately brought him to the ApeSwap Telegram. 

A user named Derek in the ApeSwap Telegram and the overall fun atmosphere provided by the Ape community help Zeinzu learn some aspects of the $GNANA token from ApeSwap. When Zeinzu first saw the Telegram posts from ApeSwap and Chimpin’ Chip about the development of ApeLabs, Zeinzu was in no way a crypto beginner, but still, he knew he had to learn more.

Insert Chimpin’ Chip and “his magnificent voice for teaching,” where Zeinzu was inspired by the initial ApeLabs welcoming video. It was there that Zeinzu began his personal transformation from the shy, English second language speaker, to an outspoken and confident crypto voice.

“Everyone is a stranger when you enter the Discord for the first. As an introvert, I only knew the familiarity of Chip’s voice. I was a very nervous experience,” Zeinzu recalled from the first day.
Source

The Application Process

A student doesn't need a whole lot to join ApeLabs. As Zeinzu detailed, users need to know some basic things about crypto to be started. Students will also need good internet and a Discord account. But before that, students must submit the form, and tell a little about themselves. 

The ApeLabs team will respond within 48 hours to all new applications, and the team opens a dialogue with each student to gauge and understand what they are looking for from the experiences. Zeinzu also indicated that students need some sort of word document software like Libre Office or Google Docs in order to turn in some of the assignments. 

Prices for students are adjusted based on country to try to accommodate and make the labs accessible everywhere. One of the first steps in learning DeFi is submitting the tuition, which must be paid in $GNANA tokens. 

“The exams are True/False and Multiple Choice and occasionally other things,” admits Zeinzu. “But the group work is where I learned the most. It is not a typical class type and with the students from around the world I learned a lot.”
Source

Fun and Engaging Labs

Behind the 15 years of education experience of Chip, Zeinzu admits the classes are very well structured and more entertaining than real school. Zeinzu admits that new students could walk into any class previously, but after seeing that not work so well, Chip and the team have now made all students progress through the courses like building blocks.

The classes are two-hour lectures followed by 30 minutes of group work each session. The labs in the school are divided into five days. The first four days are mostly lectures and group work. The fifth day is usually comprised of a guest lecture and an exam. Zeinzu’s classes had around 10-15 students. He enrolled in all the courses and did the whole certification. 

The group work is where Zeinzu found his most rewarding experiences. He enjoyed working on the reports required to be submitted by each group. He found the work relevant to the crypto world and described Chip’s lessons as the key to the program.

“I would say Chip helps the students because he teaches in a way that only lets you learn something new once you have learned the previous relevant part. It’s hard to explain, but it comes almost block by block where Chip is building your base of knowledge so you can understand everything deeply.”

Beyond his lesson learned from his favorite classes (which we will explore in part 2), he loved the experience of how Chip helped guide all the students from around the globe. Zeinzu was adamant about this point. Chip makes the experience better for students, according to Zeinzu.

Stay tuned for part two, where we explore Zeinzu’s favorite courses, more specifically, the professors other than Chip and the post-graduate life! 

Where to find ApeLabs:

Website | Twitter | YouTube

Don’t forget to download the BSC News mobile application on iOS and Android to keep up with all the latest news for BNB Chain and crypto! 

For those looking for tools and strategies regarding safety and crypto education, be sure to check out the Tutorials, Cryptonomics Explainers, and Trading Tool Kits from BSC News.

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