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Universidad ESAN: Meet the Rector

Founded in 1963, the Perú-based Universidad ESAN is a leading Latin American institution renowned for the quality if its teaching and research, as well as being responsible for setting up the first business school in the Spanish-speaking world.

To learn more about Universidad ESAN and what it offers international students, we spoke to its rector, Jorge Talavera Traverso, Ph.D.

Could you please tell us about your background and how you became rector of ESAN?

My background is in electronic engineering. I received my bachelor's degree from the National University Of Engineering. I have an MBA from ESAN and a PhD from Pennsylvania State University. I worked over there for some time and I was a visiting scholar.

After that, I came back to Peru and taught at ESAN. Next, I moved to Chile to be a Dean of Adolfo Ibanez Business School.

Then I came back to Peru and after some time ESAN invited me to come back and be rector of the university.

What is ESAN known for?

In 1962, ESAN started as a dream of US President John F Kennedy. He established the US Agency of International Development (AID) and one of the initiatives was to create a graduate school in Latin America. The project was entrusted to Stanford University. The first deans and professors were all from Stanford and they ran the school for eight years as an umbrella institution.

ESAN became very well known at the graduate level. We have 12 dual degrees for MBA students, while other institutions have only one or two.

Over time, we created a doctoral program and now we've started undergraduate programs too.

What are international students are looking for when they come to ESAN?

They want to have an international and multicultural experience and to expand their opportunities to work. Student want a strong degree to be positioned well in the market. Student will have a dual degree and will learn Spanish and about business opportunities in Latin America.

How many programs does ESAN offer taught in English? 

We started in English as we had deans and professors from Stanford. After we were recognised by the Peruvian government, we shifted to Spanish and now we are moving back to English as it is an international language of the world.

We are optimistic about our undergraduate programs. We have five-year bachelor's degees where more courses taught in English are introduced for students in the last two years. For MBA students, we have one program fully in English. For other programs we have courses available in English.

We also have international weeks, where we invite professors from international institutions to teach our students.


How do you promote Peru to international students? 

We send our professors abroad to gain experience, while also bringing international professors to our institution to share their knowledge and experience. We promote regular programs, continuous education, doctoral research and many other options.

In order to be successful, you must have connections in different organisations. We are members of 25 networks, including a global partnership for education, which stimulates collaboration by using technology for distant education.

Through this network we offer programs each semester, where we have two classes with a few different countries, sharing classes together.

There is another exclusive network through which we are connected to 62 schools, top institutions in each country. We have collaboration agreements with at least 12 members of this network.

The best way to attract international students is to show they will study in a good institution. Students can use our programs gain knowledge and our connections to find work in Peru and Latin America.

We have amazing support, good technology and, most importantly, our experienced professors.

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Written by Craig OCallaghan
As Head of Content, Craig is responsible for all articles and guides published across TopUniversities and TopMBA. He has nearly 10 years of experience writing for a student audience and extensive knowledge of universities and study programs around the world.

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