Sphere College Project

A New World of Learning

Questions and Answers

Our intention for Sphere College Project is for adult community members to come together to create an inspiring and effective model of education. This model maximizes the use of local resources and empowers adults to accomplish their goals, while discovering how to contribute their talents to the well-being of the community. All adults from the community are welcome to participate in the design, delivery and evolution of this initiative.



Is your school accredited?

No. We offer a certification for participants who complete our 3-Phase Program and pass a competency assessment by professionals in the field or discipline of choice. We are always open to the possibility of seeking accreditation if the Sphere community chooses to do so.

What is the legal structure of Sphere?

Sphere is a 501(c)(3), tax-exempt, non-profit organization. When we get to the point where we grow, we endeavor to establish ourselves as a worker-run non-profit. In our case, this means that participants (students), teachers, mentors and staff collaborate in steering the direction of the organization, with board oversight.

What services do you offer?

We are currently offering individual and group mentorship, as well as coursework in essential skills, such as communication, numerical literacy and critical thinking. More about our essential skills curriculum will be forthcoming. Additionally, we expect to offer other courses in the future.

Who are Sphere’s Mentors?

Presently, Sphere’s lead mentor is former college professor and founder of Sphere – Richard Liston. However, Sphere has access to other mentors in the Asheville community.  We invite any adult with a passion for mentoring others to connect with us. Mentors may be current or former university instructors, active or retired coaches, consultants, and business owners and professionals. Anyone from the Asheville community is invited to become a mentor. The main criteria for becoming a Sphere mentor is a commitment to ongoing personal and professional growth and development; we ask mentors to participate in ongoing skill-building dialogues and initiatives for the intention of creating the highest quality mentorship experience for everyone.

How much does it cost to have a mentor?

For individuals, mentorship is on a sliding scale from $0-$90 per hour, based on ability to pay. We would be delighted to help you fulfill your goals. Please contact us at info@spherecollege.org to get started!

Where do you conduct your mentorship sessions?

Mentorship sessions can be held via Skype, at one of our two community locations – one in West Asheville, the other in South Asheville, or at any other agreed-upon community space. Sphere is committed to a model of sustainability, which means maximizing the use of community resources. Not only does this help us minimize our costs, it helps us support other business and organizations within the community. We are always open to hearing about additional “volunteer” space that we could use for these types of meetings. If you are aware of available space, please let us know.

What do I need to do to work with a Sphere mentor?

If you would like a mentor, the first step is to send an email to info AT spherecollege.org. From there, we will email you the Sphere Mentorship Enrollment Form to complete, which you may complete on your own, or via a telephone with our lead mentor, Richard Liston. Once the form is complete, we will give you a call to discuss the details of the mentorship arrangement, and answer any questions you may have.

Where do you get your funding?

Sphere funds its operations in a number of ways. We generate revenue from private and group mentorship as well as fees for our essential skills courses. We are also actively seeking private donations from individuals and organizations in the community and throughout the country, and grant money from foundations. Sphere College Project is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt, non-profit organization. All donations are tax-deductible. If you would like to support Sphere with a financial gift, please visit our donations page.

Thank you for your consideration; we can only run these valuable programs with your support!