UPEACE Centre for Executive Education


The UPEACE Centre for Executive Education is located within the University for Peace- established by the UN General Assembly. With headquarters in Costa Rica, UPEACE was established in December, 1980 as a Treaty Organization.

The UPEACE Centre for Executive Education offers a platform for students to engage with the University for Peace without doing a 1-year, onsite master’s program. The Centre works with leaders from around the globe to offer transformational educational experiences that are dynamic and engaging, while inspiring our participants to have a positive impact in our increasingly interconnected world.



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Yes, I recommend this program

Positive Leadership at the Upeace University

I attended a 'Positive Leadership' course by the UPEACE Centre for Executive Education facilitated by Mohit Mukherjee. For 5 weeks, we dived into topics such as the PERMA model of well-being, Appreciative inquiry and Managing your Energy.

During this course, I was able to identify my Why and learn how to resolve workplace conflict in a psychologically safe way while getting to know amazing leaders all around the world.

I truly recommend this course to everyone looking to develop and strengthen the leader within.

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Yes, I recommend this program

Positive Leadership was a the higlight of my 2020

In the middle of the pandemic, running a school and being an educational leader that believes in the importance of emotional education in schools, I found that this course led me to recognize my strengths, to discover my super powers that ultimately make me a better leader. I was so motivated and so enthusiastic with all the new things I learned, that I began multiplying it with my teachers and students. Making a recount of the first semester of this school year our team felt stronger applying Positive Leadership and Positive Psychology tools. We feel that thanks to this course we are becoming a better school, therefore having happier and more engaged students, that will always be our goal. By far it's one of the best leadership courses I’ve taken in a long time! I highly recommend it!

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
I think given the fact that this course was new to me, I was pretty nervous in using the tools I learned and creating small workshops with my students and teachers. However, the material was so dynamic I decided just to go for it and trust the content of the program.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Wonderful Positive Experience

This experience came at a hectic time in my worklife. I wondered if I would have time for the course, but in the end it was the best gift I could give to myself in such crazy times. Mohit is an amazing instructor- helping reframe ideas, ask important questions, and make you think about how your work can make a positive impact in the world. It was the perfect course for me at the end of 2020 to make sense of my role and the bigger pircture. The best part was sharing space and thoughts with people from around the world!

What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?
I had the opportunity to problem solve with colleagues on three continents simultaneously! I would amazing to hear the thoughts and insights of others from around the world.
Yes, I recommend this program

Educative and refreshing!


My name is Esmeralda and I have a Global Leadership Diploma from Centre for Executive Education within the University for Peace, Costa Rica.

This diploma offers a myriad of different courses that fit perfectly to people all around the world with differente backgrounds and jobs. You choose 5 courses do you want to be part in from a catalogue of more than 10 courses. It mixes on-site courses with fully online courses (I fully recommend to come to Costa Rica if you have the possibility). They are also a perfect fit for people that studies and work at the same time. The webinars are interactive and you get to know your classmates even from a virtual classroom.

The diploma helped me deepen my understanding of leadership and gave me new insights. I learned from a vast of topics, from fundraising and M&E to Happiness and life design. I would recommend the diploma to anyone.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
You can do the diploma online however, I recommend a hybrid track. I extremely recommend to take the Positive Leadership course or the Gross Global Happiness Summit. The campus is beautiful, the connections with other participants are forever and you can later travel around Costa Rica :)
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Yes, I recommend this program

Positive Leadership - take the course!

This should be a require course for every human on the planet. 1) Its in Costa Rica on the beautiful campus of UPEACE... everyone needs to know about UPEACE! 2) The staff are super helpful, supportive, engaging, knowledgeable, and positive! 3) The course is dynamic, experiential, interactive, and full of useful tools that you can bring back home and implement into your work or personal life and 4) You get to interface with peers from around the world... my classmates were from the Dominican Republic, Holland, Argentina, Costa Rica, the USA and Australia! I highly recommend this course!
Useful tip: if you are coming to Costa Rica from out of the country, schedule some more time outside of the course. Chat with peers in your course from Costa Rica and ask them what you should do.... or see if they would be willing to take you places. Connect to the local culture, go on an adventure, learn about ngo's doing positive work for youth the environment. Practice your Spanish at a language school and begin implementing the tools you learned right away!

What would you improve about this program?
I think that the material was so rich and useful that having a 4th day to dig deeper would have been nice.


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Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Julia Delafield

Job Title
Director, CEE

Julia has dual master’s degrees from UPEACE and American University in Washington DC in International Relations and Affairs and Natural Resources and Sustainable Development. She is a co-founder of Lafaza, a sustainable vanilla importing venture, and spent the first half of her career working on development and environmental certification programs through Latin America. Julia is from the United States but has lived in Costa Rica for nine years, as well as spending significant time in Mexico and Brazil.

What is your favorite travel memory?

My favorite in its absurdity (looking back):

I did a gap year in Brazil at age 17. On the plane ride there, I remember having a 3-seat section to myself, and just lying there crying non-stop throughout the 10-hour flight to Sao Paolo. All I could think of was all of my friends, heading off on predictable paths, to well-known universities, settling into dorm rooms with their parents, and going to freshman welcome parties. What the heck was I doing?

It was my favorite because the year in Brazil was the most profound, growing, and learning experience I could have ever hoped for. Within 24 hours on the ground, I didn't look back! It just goes to show that you need to push through those self-doubt moments!

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

How haven't I grown? While I've been in charge of departments and projects before, this is the first time I've felt that an organization's success rests, at times, in my hands.

We teach a lot of introspective classes, and I've learned so much about myself, my strengths, and where I can use a little help. I, for instance, am highly organized and process-oriented, but I'm also quite risk-adverse. In a team, it helps me enormously to work with a big picture thinker who will push me to make changes and innovate!

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

Within months of starting at UPEACE, I hosted a group of students from San Jose State University. I connected particularly well with a woman getting her MA in Educational Counseling.

About 2 years later, she contacted me on LinkedIn to tell me that she had become a Counselor. As such, she had been offered the opportunity to help plan an international trip for the school's choral group. She had been so moved by her experience with UPEACE that she planned the trip around a visit to us! So cool to have her reappear, and she staged an amazing signing event in the middle of our 'Peace Monument' – a surreal and beautiful moment for all!

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

Personally, I LOVE the Positive Leadership workshop. I feel like its content is the reason I work with UPEACE. We talk a lot about well-being and how to cultivate it in your life, both in the workplace and personally, and I just think that it is profound content.

Every time we have a new employee, I ask them to take it, and I make sure to be a part of it at least once a year to make sure I'm being the best I can. I just think that it is so relevant to absolutely everyone, at all ages and stages of life, and I think it can truly be a life-changing workshop!

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

UPEACE is a magical place, and we have the luxury of being here. It's a mix of being affiliated with the United Nations – so academically challenging and internationally minded – with the fact that we're sort of located in a garden on a mountaintop, surrounded by coffee fields. Then add in self-reflection, cross-cultural sharing, and amazing content!

And the team? I swear I work on the best team I could imagine. We have complementary strengths, but mostly we're just genuinely nice to each other, and we care about each other. I think that shines through in how we treat each other, and it makes me happy to come in to work each day.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

To reference Simon Sinek's famous TED Talk, I think that companies need to have a higher purpose and a clear understanding of their “why”. At the end of the day, we all want meaning in our lives.

You cannot dedicate 40 hours per week (or more) unless you have an underlying passion and understand how those hours are making a difference in the lives of others.

In our case, we believe firmly in empowering people to understand they can make a positive impact in the world. What could be more important than that?