Once upon a time* in a land far, far away** there were three young gentleman called Jonathan Briggs, David Erixon and Lars Lundh who met during a project involving a CD-rom production. Being clever young gents they looked at the state of the educational system that was then in place to train people to work within this burgeoning digital industry and decided they could do better, so they did.
Starting a school in the remoteness of Karskrona, Sweden was a bold move, placing it in a former prison was almost evil. As years of successively awesome students came to Hyper Island to learn their trade at the hands of the industry they were infused with the prisoners energetic need to escape into the real world. With no teachers and real clients, the challenge was simple. Students sank if they wouldn’t swim, it was do or die, just like in the digital industry. Clients gave briefs as varied as “We need a new website” to “Write our corporate charter”. Students had to teach themselves and each other to achieve the assigned goals. They had to make it up as they went along and be happy to do so.
I attended the Digital Media class of 2010 in their new Stockholm campus. Whilst there I worked with 41 other students from all over the world. I worked with real client briefs and produced real work. I learned to use design tools, to project manage website development, to create and develop digital concepts from inception to execution. Hyper Island is more than just an awesome name, or an excuse to spend a few years in Sweden, it’s a career reboot. It’s being rebaked in a mold you have to make yourself. You’re not the same after it.
I certainly wasn’t.
Have a look and see: