Exosphere Academy F.A.Q.

Program Questions

  • The Exosphere Academy (EA) programs attract people from all different stages in life. There have been 16 year olds who wanted to learn new skills during their summers, both current college students and those who skipped the traditional university experience, people in their 30s who were looking for a fresh start in a different field, and even some over 50 who realized it’s never too late to learn new skills and start making a change.
  • Each day starts at 8AM.

    There is a mandatory daily discussion, activity, or briefing to get you focused and in the right frame of mind. Stream sessions start at 9:30AM and go until 12PM. Lunch is allotted 60 minutes from 12PM to 1:00PM. The stream sessions will resume from 1:00 - 2:30PM.

    The core curriculum sessions will cover topics such as emerging technology, transhumanism, sociology, communication, business development, sales & marketing, and more. These will be on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 3:00 - 5:00PM. Tuesday and Thursday will be open work / open office time where students can continue to work on projects and skill development.

    There will be a wide mix of sessions including activities, theory, lectures, workshops, and discussions. The weekly schedule of the core sessions and each stream will be posted every Sunday evening so that you will know what sessions are being taught in order for you to be able to plan ahead.

    Saturday is for reflection, review, and catch up from the week activities. Sunday you are encouraged to unplug from electronic devices and do something relaxing, preferably outside.
  • The first program was in September 2013, called the Exosphere bootcamp. Since then, Exosphere Academy has conducted 9 on-campus programs and over 25 Exobase workshops in cities all over the world. Total number of participants is just over 1,200. Learn more in our About page.
  • Yes! All of our courses have been developed so that any person, no matter their past experience, background, or skills can join. We work with personal education plans for each student which allow you to get the most out of the course under any circumstance.

    EA is most interested in curious and motivated individuals who are willing to put in the hard work that it takes to learn new skills and build solutions to real problems. People who wake up and commit to solving the problems of that day, no matter the size or shape.
  • EA is all about getting outside your existing context and challenging yourself each day. Going to another country (or city for Brazilians) does exactly that. Almost everything is new--the people, place, culture, language, food, problems, etc. Being confronted daily by this new context automatically puts you into problem-solving mode. It trains you think creatively on how to overcome the barriers that arise from this new version of reality in which you are living for 8 weeks.

    The staff, fellows, and curators of EA expect the same level of excellence in themselves and the program as those from US-based educational programs. Many of the EA staff members are American, so you can get an American experience within the context of the timeless style and culture of Brazil.

    Another main reason to come to EA is that programs in the US are typically comprised of Americans and maybe a few other nationalities. At EA, don't be surprised if 15+ countries are represented by just one group.

    Plus, have you seen the beaches of Florianópolis?
  • No one likes bureaucratic application processes, so we’ve made it pretty simple to sign up. You enter your information into the signup page. You will answer some questions, enter basic contact info, and choose the course. It won’t take more than a few minutes to complete.

    You will then receive an email within 24 hours from a team member to talk about your desire to attend the next term.

    There is only one thing that you and the team member must agree upon. And that is, considering your goals, ambitions, and what you want to learn, do you/we think that Exosphere Academy can help you achieve these things?

    If both agree, then you are in! You would have a week to pay a non-refundable deposit to hold your spot. After payment, we invest in you and your future immediately! Starting with building your customized learning plan and helping arrange logistics.
  • Courses work (class time) will be around 20 hours per week with core sessions ranging from 10-15 hours per week. Saturday is an open day for reflection, studying, and catching up on work. Sundays are encouraged to be for unplugging from electronics and resting.
  • No. This program is on-campus and by being so, fosters cross-pollination of ideas and collaboration among different fields. We have found that actually living and working together yields greater benefits and provides more opportunities to develop transdisciplinary projects, build longer-lasting relationships, and reliable networks.
  • There are no tests or grades here. Learning is a constant and continual process, but it’s also a lot of work. Your efforts will be evaluated so that you can improve in the areas you are lacking, and try to perfect the areas where you excel. We cannot promise there will not be “homework.” But we can promise that if there is, it’s there for a reason and will benefit you.
  • Since the range of subjects and experience levels of our students varies significantly, there is no simple answer to this. However, some of our previous students have been able to get jobs such as Full Stack Developer at software startups or copywriter for a creative marketing agency, with many starting their own business or joining up with a co-founder for a new venture.

    While building a better future, your options are only limited to your own imagination and the value you can create.

    For a couple prominent examples, check out Book in a Box, co-founded by alumni Zach Obront and his partner Tucker Max, and Fort Galt, which was founded by a group of alumni while at the program in 2014.
  • Yes, but you have to decide no later than the start of week 2. After being introduced to all the courses during week 1, some students might choose to join a different one and that’s no problem. You are also encouraged to periodically attend other courses’ sessions and talk with the fellows from other courses.
  • Of course, if at any time during your application process you wish to speak with an alumni about their experience, just ask. We will be happy to introduce you.
  • If you convince us that you'll make good use of their time, we will be happy to introduce you to even the most prominent members of the Exosphere network.

Pricing Questions

  • The tuition is $2,950 USD with FREE housing.
  • The Exosphere Foundation allocates donations and charitable giving from supporters around the world into merit scholarships to help cover the tuition costs for remarkable or unique individuals. For those interested applicants, there will be an additional interview to qualify for assistance.
  • After you are accepted, you have two weeks to pay your deposit to hold your spot. You can also choose to make an installment plan.

    After you are accepted into the program, we will send you payment instructions for one of the following accepted payment methods: credit card, Paypal, wire transfer, Bitcoin, and Ether. Brazilian residents can also pay with Sympla.

Logistical Questions

  • The program will be delivered in English. EA programs have a history of international diversity (from every continent and 47 unique countries represented) and the best way to bring together these different nationalities is to use English.
  • Housing accommodations are available five days before the program start date and up to 3 days after the program ends. There is some flexibility for special circumstances. It is recommended to arrive at least three days before the program start date.
  • Basically, it’s paradise. Upper 80's (29C) in the summer, low 60's (14C) in the winter. Moderate amounts of rainfall and lots of sunshine.
  • The workspace is a very modern building within walking distance of the housing accommodations. It's open-planned and has a good number of desks to work from (plus a high speed internet connection).

    All of the housing accommodations will have an equipped kitchen, living room, internet, and bedding provided for you. We do not provide towels so please do pack one or plan on buying one upon arrival.
  • The internet connection at the office/co-working space is fibre, so you'll have no troubles working from there. The internet connection at your house may be less fast, but it will certainly be sufficient for voIP calls.
  • The Exosphere Academy is located in Cidade Criativa Pedra Branca (Creative City of the White Stone). It is a 15 minute drive from Florianópolis, the capital of Santa Catarina state in southern Brazil. It is a modern and safe city for foreigners.

    Pedra Branca is a real estate development with the goal of creating a sustainable smart city. There is a university, coworking space, startup incubator and accelerator, gym, restaurants, bar, apartments, cafes, and office space all within walking distance of each other.

    Florianópolis is located on Santa Catarina island. It was rated the best place to live in Brazil, with the highest quality of life. Florianópolis is the Brazilian city that has most increased in wealth over the last three decades. Its GNP per capita increased, on average, 6% per year and is currently at US$ 10 thousand – almost twice the Brazilian average.

    To learn more about Cidade Criative Pedra Branca, click here. To learn more about the state of Santa Catarina and the quality of life, click here.
  • The power network in Brazil can be 220-240V (sometimes it’s 127) and the newer construction uses the staggered three prong. So you may need a transformer if you have US/Canadian devices and an adaptor if your fittings are different.

    Otherwise there will either be washing facilities in the house you're staying in, or nearby. And there are plenty of banks/ATMs, pharmacies, and supermarkets relatively close as well.

Personal Questions

  • The program’s tuition covers the program content, housing (a shared apartment with other participants). For personal expenses we recommend around $250-300 USD per month for food.

    This number varies according to what lifestyle you want to have during the 8 weeks. Because of the dynamics of the program and living with other participants generates a strong sense of community, participants usually share a lot of meals together, visit local markets, and save money. Having meals with other people is also a big part of the engagement and relationship building that is important at EA.
  • That depends on your plans for after the program and the options available to you in your current situation. This is an immersive program that will require around 30 hours of your time just for the in-person content. This number does not include time spent working on projects, collaborating with other students, social activities, and study/research time.

    If you have doubts about your time commitment, mention this in your application and we will talk to you about how we can tailor the program to suit your availability and needs.
  • Matt Kennedy, Senior Curator at Exosphere Academy, would love to answer that question. Send him an email at matt@exosphe.re