Italy: A University from Italy is offering degree programme that will help people build their influencing skills on social media. The online university eCampus, which is being promoted by football star Christiano Ronaldo, who is featured in the college’s new publicity campaign, is also funding 36 students grants as part of his commitment.
The degree aims to ‘fill the current educational gap’ and to help students gain the technical skills needed to pursue a career as an influencer, the Italy-based university said on its website. The eCampus degree will offer classes in fashion psychology, semiotics and the philosophy of language, TV history, intercultural communication and information technology, among others. The institution, which also offers degrees in Engineering, Law, Arts and Psychology, has more than 30,000 students, according to its website.
The ranks of bloggers, Instagrammers and You-Tubers with enough followers to earn a living as influencers are swelling. Companies, brands and even countries are increasingly trying to tap into that social media exposure by offering influencers lucrative marketing contracts. The success of Ferragni’s The Blonde Salad, the world’s most popular fashion blog, even became a case study at Harvard Business School.
The news of the degree program sparked an intense debate on social media in Italy, with people challenging the idea of an influencer as a profession. Many also praised the offer as it can help young and inexperienced people develop marketable skills in a country where youth unemployment tops 27%.