EARTH is so appreciative for the longstanding partnership we have with the Mastercard Foundation. 2019 was a big year, as together we agreed to continue our collaboration with several exciting new components. First, EARTH is thrilled that the Mastercard Foundation will support a total of 125 new scholarships from now through the graduating class of 2028! Seventy-five percent of those scholarships will support African students and 75% will support women. There also will be a concerted effort to recruit students from refugee communities in both Latin America and Africa.

In addition, we are partnering on an exciting new Fellowship Program, developed to enhance and facilitate the transition of African students back to their home countries and communities following graduation. This challenge is of crucial importance to both organizations. The fellowships will provide graduates a living stipend, mentoring, and other support for the first year following graduation from EARTH University, or in some cases, to recent graduates already living back in their home countries. Through the ongoing development of EARTH’s strong network of African partners, we hope to offer our graduates some very attractive opportunities in one of four possible tracks:

  • Agricultural employment
  • Agricultural education
  • Science and research
  • Entrepreneurship


Although the fellowships will focus on African graduates, it will also be possible for Latin American graduates to participate in the entrepreneurship track if their project is established in Africa, perhaps in collaboration with an African classmate. One hundred and forty fellows will be supported over the life of the project, approximately half of them from other Mastercard Foundation partner universities.

A second new component of the partnership is the development of a series of online resources, focused on entrepreneurship, to benefit EARTH graduates and others, including:

  • Webinars
  • A repository of curated resources
  • An online course


Both of these new components align with EARTH’s strategic plan to increase our impact by providing ongoing resources and support to our graduates, empowering them to succeed!

Finally, for the first time, EARTH will have staff on the ground in Africa to support the project, as well as a new position on our Guacimo campus dedicated to supporting the institution in its monitoring, evaluation, reporting, and learning processes.

Thank you, Mastercard Foundation for partnering once again with EARTH University to make 2019 the beginning of a great decade together!


120 young leaders will benefit from educational opportunities in sustainable development

TORONTO (CANADA) & GUACIMO (COSTA RICA); April 23, 2012—The Mastercard Foundation and EARTH University announced today a seven-year, USD 19.5 million partnership to provide educational opportunities to young people from disadvantaged communities in Africa, Latin America and The Caribbean. The partnership will offer comprehensive scholarships to 120 students at EARTH University – an international, non-profit university in Costa Rica with an innovative four-year program in sustainable agriculture, natural resource management and community development.

“This scholarship program offers young people the opportunity to be part of EARTH’s extraordinary learning environment,” said Reeta Roy, President and CEO of The Mastercard Foundation. “They will become leaders who will make significant contributions to agricultural and economic initiatives in their countries.”

The Mastercard Foundation Scholars will be engaged in a culture of philanthropy and volunteerism, encouraging them to transition from being beneficiaries to benefactors and active contributors in their communities. The program also integrates complementary supports such as mentoring, career counseling, service learning opportunities and internships. Following successful completion of EARTH University’s four-year program, the Scholars will return to their countries to be part of a cohort of new leaders committed to transforming the agricultural sector and contributing to sustainable livelihoods. The partnership is part of The Mastercard Foundation’s Youth Learning Program, which works with institutions like EARTH University to enable young people in developing countries – particularly Sub-Saharan Africa – to make successful transitions to the workforce and actively engage with their communities.

“Since our inception we have been committed to giving educational opportunities to young people who want to make a difference, but lack the financial resources for a higher education. To this end, 60 percent of our students receive full scholarships. We could not achieve this, particularly given the tough global economic conditions, without committed partners like The Mastercard Foundation, and hope the alliance inspires others to join our effort to change the world through education,” remarked EARTH University President, José Zaglul.