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LEAD University is a private higher education institution accredited by Costa Rica’s National Council of Higher Education (CONESUP). It was founded in 2016 by a group of well-known Costa Rican entrepreneurs and professionals who sought to foster an alliance between the university, its students, as well as companies to contribute to the development of the region.

LEAD University offers degrees and programs in the areas of business and economics, international trade, engineering and technology. Special emphasis is placed on the development of soft skills, including leadership, critical thinking, creativity, innovation, productivity, integration of knowledge and value creation.  The motto “Lead or follow” reflects our focus on leadership, excellence, personal advancement and national development.



International students may apply to be a regular student or select a series of courses as an exchange student from partner universities.  The academic year is divided into three trimesters of 15 weeks, followed by two weeks off. Hence, our courses run from mid-January to early May, from Mid-May until the end of August and from mid-September until mid-December. All courses are currently taught in Spanish and an intermediate working knowledge of Spanish is necessary for international students to succeed. LEAD University will need a certification confirming an advanced level of Spanish (approximately B-2 level) fully to partake in the academic life at LEAD University.  We offer two Bachelor degrees, one in International Commerce and one in Business. We also offer a Master’s degree in International Markets and Commerce.

BA in International Commerce:  Pursuing an interdisciplinary approach, this program combines courses in economics, law, international commerce and business administration. The teaching faculty of the program has led Costa Rica’s integration into the international economy by negotiating free trade agreements and pursuing other visionary trade strategies.

BA in Business:  The objective of this program is to enhance students’ knowledge and understanding of the principal business components and their interactions, namely: management, leadership, human resources, capital, labor, production, managerial and adaptive capacity. This program is based on the following pillars: leadership, management capacity, human talent to create environments that foster creative intelligence and hence the ability to tackle and respond to specific problems in a context sensitive way.

MA in International Markets and Commerce:  The program offers an in- depth view into the issues involved in the internationalization of a company. A highly practical component is combined with relevant and up-to- date theory ensuring key concepts are tested and applied systematically throughout the program. As such, its course components allow a thorough investigation of specific business problems. Other key areas of LEAD University’s master program focus on conciliation and conflict resolution, the ability to communicate, listen and anticipate events as well as to perceive the needs and expectations of counterparts.


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