At COA you’ll be part of a tight-knit, supportive community of engaged thinkers and doers. You’ll work closely and collaboratively with faculty and student peers on important projects with real-world implications. Our interdisciplinary, self-designed curriculum gives you the freedom to follow your passions and the tools to make a difference in the world after graduation.

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The missions, ethos, and educational approaches of COA and UWC share many key elements, such as personal responsibility and integrity, mutual responsibility and respect, personal challenge, and compassion and service. UWC uses education as a force to unite people, nations and cultures for peace and a sustainable future, while COA seeks to understand and improve the relationships between humans and their natural, social, and built environments. COA’s self-directed, interdisciplinary approach to learning is a natural complement to a UWC education.

Cora Carvalho ’23
Brazil, UWC USA

Interests: marine biology, environmental law, conservation, anthropology, philosophy

“The international community here is quite big in comparison with the student body. It’s nice to have that net of people who understand.”

Mauro Ramirez Azofeifa ’23
Costa Rica, UWC Dilijan

Interests: sustainable business, entrepreneurship, education

“I applied for and won a Davis Projects for Peace Grant, which was $10,000 that I got this past summer. I went back to Costa Rica to do this project with kids around environmental education and experiential learning. Now I’m thinking about developing a nonprofit or NGO to protect and secure the watersheds, ecosystems, and biodiversity of my rural town.”

Roupsha Ballison ’23
Mauritius, UWC Costa Rica

Interests: Politics, Government Management

“I believe in learning what you want, not learning to get good grades. And COA is that space where you’re free to learn. The teachers, the assignments, how you do independent study… are very different than other universities.

Charles-Olivier Levesque ’23
Canada, Pearson College UWC

Interests: food systems, economics, photography

“A big part of COA is governance. You really have a say in what the school is about and what it’s doing.”

Paloma Tejero Caballo ’22
Spain, UWC Costa Rica

Interests: food systems, botany, field biology, anthropology, feminist theory, ceramics

“COA has a close-knit community similar to UWC, with a focus on the environment. Studying here has also given me the chance to explore other interests.

The process to hire a new professor at COA is done through a committee of students, staff, and faculty. Last year I was part of a team reviewing applications for new music faculty.”

Aniruddha Jaydeokar ’23
India, UWC ISAK Japan

Interests: finance, business, economics, entrepreneurship, film

“I get to learn from professors one-on-one, and I value those relationships. It brings more quality and engagement for me as a student and helps me motivate myself to do better in my classes.”