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2022 Annual Report

EARTHShot 2050:
Toward a Global Movement of Leaders
for our Food Systems

Dear friends,

In 2022, we gradually welcomed partners and visitors back to campus. The openness and warmth that are defining characteristics of the EARTH culture have also been essential in the development of an Academic Program grounded in collaboration, experiential learning and the exchange of knowledge and values. It feels so good to be able to live and share that openness and warmth fully once again.

2022 was also a year to reflect on the achievements of our 2018-2022 Strategic Plan and to chart the course for the University’s future, through a year-long planning process involving the entire EARTH community as well as many trusted partners. As part of this process, we defined EARTH’s desired contribution to the urgent challenges the world faces. We are calling this strategic aspiration our EARTHShot: By 2050, EARTH and our partners will have empowered and prepared a global movement of leaders to achieve nature positive food production that improves producer livelihoods in developing regions.

By 2050, we need to ensure access to healthy diets for 10 billion people in ways that both dramatically reduce food production’s negative impact on climate and at the same time enhance human livelihoods. EARTH imagines global food systems that provide healthy food for all in ways that are positive for people and planet. We aspire to systems that leverage technology and innovative production models and that promote enhanced food awareness, diversity, and culture to provide greater resilience and livelihoods with dignity. This will require monumental effort and collaboration at a global level, with allies from all sectors.

In this Annual Report we are sharing some of the initiatives we have developed and intend to scale in order to grow the University’s impact: virtual learning tools to prepare a greater number of leaders from different sectors to become agents of change for our food systems; alliances with global institutions; strengthening and supporting our graduates to scale their leadership and impact and achieve a successful transition into employment and entrepreneurship; and the design of innovative solutions to support and empower food producers, among others.

I wish to express my profound gratitude to our donors, friends, and strategic partners; to our Boards; our graduates; and our faculty, staff, and students. All of you are at the heart of what EARTH is, and it’s only together that we can reach our EARTHShot 2050 and build the food systems that are needed for the future.


Arturo Condo
President, EARTH University

Reopening our Doors

EARTH in Numbers

E-Learning by doing:
a virtual learning platform

E-Learning by doing is an innovative learning program where experiential agricultural topics are accesible and taught on a virtual farm. The program allows EARTH to have a broader positive impact in the world.

The current pilot project, which began in 2020 and is supported by Mastercard Foundation, is based on the learning-by-doing approach that characterizes EARTH University’s educational model. The program’s first phase consists of 17 micro-modules divided into categories that include basic concepts and applied agronomy fundamentals, precision agriculture and other technological tools, animal production, renewable energies, and sustainable production.

The modules are part theoretical and part practical in a virtual farm, allowing users to put into practice what they have learned as if they were in real life. The virtual farm allows them to explore, participate, and experiment, but also allows them to interact with other participants to develop different collaboration and networking skills.

Most micro-modules do not require prior knowledge, and the system is accessibly designed. Additionally, to increase the program’s impact, different technological tools are offered, such as the Metaverse, Virtual and Augmented Reality, and Artificial Intelligence. Users can login via web (www.elearningbydoing.earth.ac.cr) or via mobile app which, once downloaded, allows access to content even without an internet connection.

Mastercard Foundation: over a decade of supporting EARTH students to make an impact in the world

Atong Akoi Akom (’24, South Sudan) was one of the nearly two million people who fled South Sudan when armed conflict broke out in late 2013. Atong and her family settled in Kakuma Refugee Camp, in Kenya, where they started a new life. In 2021, she left home again, but this time she traveled to Costa Rica, ready to begin a four-year adventure at EARTH University to become a leader of change. As a young refugee, she has witnessed inhumane acts, yet she has also witnessed the empathetic generosity of people who have extended a significant helping hand.

“Although many believed that I – as a woman and a refugee – stood no chance or should accept a more traditional role, I was determined to continue studying. That’s how I found an advertisement about EARTH,” says Atong. “When I was admitted, Mastercard Foundation awarded me a full scholarship, which eliminated the barriers I had in my way. Winning this scholarship will allow me to help others in the community I come from. I will have the tools to help other students reach their goals, just as so many people have helped me reach mine.”

About 180,000 people live in Kakuma, 75% of whom are under the age of 25. It is essential that young women like Atong have opportunities to emerge from the confines of a refugee camp, grown and develop, and in turn uplift others. She will change her own life and the lives of many in her community, thanks to the tools, relationships, and knowledge she will gain at EARTH.

Since 2011, Mastercard Foundation and EARTH have partnered to provide educational opportunities to young people who have the potential to become change agents and who dream of improving and positively impacting their communities and our global food system. During this time, over 130 students have been awarded Mastercard Foundation scholarships and graduated from EARTH.

Thanks to the partnership with Mastercard Foundation, we are able to change the lives of talented people like Atong, who in turn are changing the world.

Second phase of program empowers farmers in Costa Rica and Guatemala

In 2022, EARTH Futures, our global solutions center, began working on the second phase of the Resilient Community Food Systems program in Costa Rica and Guatemala. We continue to train hundreds of farmers from at least nine farmer producer organizations (FPOs). The project provides knowledge and new technological tools to improve the farmers’ productivity and environmental sustainability. The program, supported by a grant from the Walmart Foundation, will focus on three specific components:

Precision agriculture: Sampling and analyzing crop soil and foliage to provide recommendations unique to each farm on how to improve their crop production and sustainably manage resources.

Creating a strong FPO management structure and an action plan to ensure long-term sustainability: Analyzing organizations, identifying areas of improvement, and helping the groups identify the best individuals to lead each area of the business based on their personalities and skill sets.

Building strong relationships within communities to create healthy business ecosystems: EARTH Futures will work with the FPOs to expand or find new alternative markets for their crops and value-added products. They will help connect local buyers with FPOs directly and encourage community members to support their local farmers.

The program’s first two-year phase proved to have great results, including: 85% of participating farmers reported increased yields; 80% of the farmers now have a clear plan to improve production efficiently; 100% of the FPOs included youth and women as organizational leaders; 100% of the FPOs report that they feel more confident in approaching potential customers.

“Thanks to the project, we understood that we had to innovate to stay in the market during the pandemic. Today we have new partners in the organization, and new customers buy our coconut products,” said Marleny González, manager at Coopecocotour, a Costa Rican company that makes handcrafted coconut products.

Driving opportunities for young
people in Africa

EARTH Futures partners with a wide range of agricultural education institutions and networks to transform agricultural education in Latin America, the Caribbean, and Africa working on the ground to prepare the next generation of leaders for our global food systems. By sharing key components of EARTH’s academic model and lessons learned over our more than 30-year history with academic institutions, we can expand EARTH’s impact in education. EARTH Futures designs new pilot programs with key partners including Mastercard Foundation and RUFORUM, the African network of universities, to inspire impactful innovations in the field.

For example, in 2022, EARTH, in collaboration with RUFORUM, developed and offered a series of virtual training seminars for young professionals from participating RUFORUM member universities across Africa. The seminars were designed to facilitate the transition from graduation to employment by providing knowledge, tools and practical information for young professionals. Topics included evaluating and planning a job search, expanding employment skills and knowledge on personal branding, understanding the work environment, and managing expectations, among others.

Also, in 2022, The Mastercard Foundation – EARTH University Fellowship Program selected its third cohort of participating Fellows from eight African countries. The program provides competitive, remunerated fellowships for EARTH Mastercard Foundation Scholar alumni to support their transitions into agricultural employment and entrepreneurship in Africa. Fellows are matched with host organizations and entrepreneurship incubation hubs across the continent for a period of 12 months to support their professional development and grow their impact.

Since its launch in 2021, the program has supported 38 Fellows from 12 countries. Over 80% of Fellows who have completed the program thus far have been hired into permanent positions with their host organizations, continued with their entrepreneurial endeavors and/or commenced graduate studies focused on positively transforming agriculture and food systems in Africa.

“With the support of the Fellowship Program, I have been able to work with 7,430 farming families through my venture, Murerwa Agribusiness Innovation Center, which seeks to promote good agricultural practices and producer access to new markets. We estimate that more than 37,000 people have been indirectly impacted by the project.”

Respect Musiyiwa (Class of 2019 & 2022 Fellow, Zimbabwe)

Our Graduates’ Impact on the World

“Support Someone like You”
Alumni Campaign

EARTH University alumni joined forces to provide scholarships for new generations of change agents to be able to study at EARTH. 10% of the alumni community contributed to raise US$10,721 in 2022.

Gift were received from:


of classes




of alumni

2022 Financial Summary

Year Ended December 31

EARTH University

Careful stewardship of resources, together with growth in charitable gifts and commercial activities, are contributing to a healthy financial picture that enables us to fulfill our mission.

Salaries and benefits for personnel $12,612,885
Operating expenses $6,799,458
Equipment $970,339
Contingencies $50,165
Total $20,432,847

Sources of Revenue
Grants $9,851,918
Tuition paid by students $3,180,294
Other income (commercial activities and other) $805,557
Endowment $6,595,079
Total $20,432,847

How our Budget is Funded

  • Grants 48%
  • Endowment 32%
  • Tuition paid by students 16%
  • Other income 4%

EARTH University Foundation

From its headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia, the EARTH University Foundation – a registered 501 (c)(3) public charity – provides vital funding for EARTH’s educational mission, programs and projects thanks to generous gifts from a global community of supporters.

Statement of Financial Position

Cash and cash equivalents $2,864,627
Pledge receivables, net $2,740,959
Endowment and other investments $68,873,417
Other assets $911,750
Total Assets $75,390,753
Liabilities and Net assets
Liabilities $421,875
Net assets $74,968,878
Total Liabilities and Net assets $75,390,753
Statement of Functional Expenses
Programs Fundraising Administrative Total expenses
Scholarships $4,989,255 $0 $0 $4,989,255
Project and program expenses $3,557,065 $0 $0 $3,557,065
Foundation Operations $252,252 $681,899 $511,660 $1,445,811
Total $8,798,572 $681,899 $511,660 $9,992,131

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Our Donors

We recognize and appreciate the generous support of the following donors whose gifts were received in 2022, with special thanks to those whose lifetime giving exceeds US$1 million. These individuals, businesses, foundations, governments, and international organizations make our mission possible.

    • Anonymous (2)

    • A.G. Leventis Foundation

    • Agencia Sueca de Cooperación Internacional

    • BAC Credomatic

    • Banco Interamericano de Desarrollo - Fondo Japonés

    • Jane and Dameron Black III

    • Charles R. O’Malley Charitable Lead Trust

    • The Cummins Foundation

    • Five Together Foundation

    • Fundación CRUSA

    • Fundación Simón I. Patiño

    • Instituto para Formación y Aprovechamiento de Recursos Humanos de Panamá

    • Kalsec, Inc.

    • Katherine John Murphy Foundation

    • Mastercard Foundation
    • Ministerio de Economía y Finanzas de Panamá

    • Moore Family Foundation

    • Norad - Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation

    • Karin and Mark Ohrstrom

    • Onward & Upward Initiative: A Charitable Trust

    • Open Society Foundations


    • † Denny and Tim Solso

    • Standard Fruit Company

    • U.S. Agency for International Development, American Schools and Hospitals Abroad (USAID/ASHA)

    • U.S. Department of Energy

    • W. K. Kellogg Foundation

    • The Walmart Foundation

    • The Wege Foundation

    • WEM Foundation

Gifts received in 2022

    • Mastercard Foundation
    • Anonymous (1)

    • Five Together Foundation
    • ANDE – USAID

    • Argidius Foundation


    • The Walmart Foundation
    • A.G. Leventis Foundation

    • Banco Davivienda

    • The Coca-Cola Foundation

    • Kathleen and Douglas Colson

    • The Heritage Group

    • Kalsec, Inc.

    • Gerald A. and Karen A. Kolschowsky Foundation, Inc.

    • George L. Ohrstrom Jr. Foundation

    • Charles R. O'Malley Charitable Lead Trust

    • Mary Anne (M.A.) Rogers

    • SSB Charitable Corporation

    • U.S. Agency for International Development, American Schools and Hospitals Abroad (USAID/ASHA)
    • Moore Family Foundation

    • Katherine John Murphy Foundation

    • Karin and Mark Ohrstrom

    • Sally and Ken Ohrstrom

    • W. K. Kellogg Foundation

    • The Wege Foundation
    • Anonymous (3)

    • Claire Lewis Arnold and H. R. Arnold III

    • Banco de Desarrollo Rural, Sociedad Anónima

    • † Anne H. Bass

    • John Bryant

    • The Butler Foundation

    • Tracey Robertson-Carter and Christopher Carter

    • The Edward Colston Foundation, Inc.

    • Globe Foundation

    • Hoffman-Brouse Foundation

    • Peter McConnell

    • Adrienne Meisel and Rand Sparling

    • Ministerio de Educación Superior, Ciencia y Tecnología República Dominicana

    • Dr. Khan Nedd - WKKF Trustee Advised Fund

    • Lee and Peter Fund

    • Luiza Angélica Barata Russo and Ewaldo Mario Kuhlmann Russo

    • Jeannie Wright
    • Anonymous (3)

    • Fundación Riojas Aguirre

    • The Americana Foundation

    • BAC Credomatic

    • Jane and Dameron Black III

    • Karen B. Caplan

    • Osael Maroto Martínez

    • McNulty Foundation

    • Lilla and Chris Ohrstrom

    • Dush Pathmanandam

    • Programa Presidencial de Becas Honduras 20/20

    • The Trio Foundation of St. Louis

    • Edna Wardlaw Charitable Trust

    • Jackie and Doug Wiggins

    • AHB Foundation

    • Elyse and Joshua Arnow

    • Azucarera El Viejo

    • Kathleen S. Brooks Family Foundation

    • Susan Carter

    • Goldman, Sachs & Co.

    • Grupo Cadelga

    • Dianne and Ron Hoge

    • Journey Charitable Foundation

    • The Sustainability Laboratory Inc.

    • Diana Wege

    • Anonymous (1)

    • Allan Acosta Castro

    • Auto Mercado S.A.

    • Banco Centroamericano de Integración Económica

    • Deb Broderick, Kay Nesbitt, Annie Misner Cooper

    • Celeste and Leon Clark

    • Diane and Richard Clark

    • Dream Volunteers

    • Janet Eastridge

    • Laura Frey and Erico Gomes

    • Fundación Ing. Agr. Juan José Castelló Zambrano

    • Duvall and J. Rex Fuqua

    • Erika González-Akre and Thomas Akre

    • Janet Haines

    • The Isaf Family Foundation

    • Karen and Robert Kustel

    • Anne and Gustavo Puente

    • Anonymous (1)

    • Emanuela and Ali Hedayat

    • Gina and Rich Kelley

    • Nine Elms Fund

    • Sharon Pauli

    • Pontes de Arrpal, S.A

    • Faith Vruggink and Victor Sánchez

    • Seaboard Overseas and Trading Group in partnership with Interra International

    • Anonymous (1)

    • Agropecuaria Popoyán

    • Diane and Kent Alexander

    • Micki and Michael Besancon

    • Kathy and G. Niles Bolton

    • C.H. Robinson Worldwide

    • Kristina and Michael Caplin

    • The Coca-Cola Company

    • Angélica Cocha Barros

    • Kelly Cunningham

    • Sherlyn and Ken Dibble

    • Carol and John Drake

    • Wendy and Hugh Durden

    • Marty Fluharty

    • Garnier & Garnier

    • Helene Harding and Patrick Briggs

    • Christine and Jon Hoek

    • Linda Hoover

    • Tracy and Scott Hoover

    • Bobbo Jetmundsen

    • Ian Lewis

    • Panama Rainwater

    • Manuel Ramírez Umaña

    • Meridith Rentz and Dean Baker

    • Larsen Fund / Susan Ritz

    • Kay Betts and John Sibley

    • Judy and Rick Smith

    • Susan and Richard Vander Veen III

    • Amy and Andrew Vaughn

    • Margaret and Terry Wittenberg

    • Randi S. N. Yoder and Michael J. Henley

Alumni Directed Gifts
† Deceased

Our Internship Hosts

We thank the following corporations and institutions around the world who hosted our third-year students as interns in 2022. The Internship helps our students build critical leadership skills and networks, while deepening their knowledge and giving them the opportunity to apply the skills developed at EARTH in a professional setting.

    • ACATONACA (Asociación Cooperativa de Producción Agropecuaria y Servicios Múltiples Tonacatepéque)

    • Agrícola Chispita S.A.

    • Agrícola El Cántaro S.A.

    • Agrícola Siempre Verde

    • AGROGANA (Agroganadera Espinosa Chiriboga S.A.)

    • AgroIntec

    • Agropecuaria Bambusa S.A.S.

    • Agropecuaria Popoyan S.A.

    • Arburn University

    • Biocampo Norte Eirelli

    • Black Leg Ranch

    • B&C Exportadores del Valle de Ujarrás S.A.

    • Cape Eleuthera Institute

    • Centro de Estudios Postcosecha (CEPOC)

    • Citrofrut Agrícola

    • Clemson University

    • Colorado State University

    • Coquira Soil Project


    • Cornell University

    • Corporación para el Desarrollo Participativo y Sostenible de los Pequeños Productores Rurales - (Corporación PBA)

    • Costa Farms


    • Desarrollo Rural y Medio Ambiente A.C. (DERMAC)

    • Desarrollo Agropecuario de Parrita S.A. (DAPASA)

    • DISAGRO / Abonos del Pacífico S.A.

    • EDEKA ZENTRALE Stiftung & Co. KG

    • FANOVA

    • Fazenda Capela Velha

    • Finca El Trapiche

    • Finca Agroecológica Don Felo

    • Flores y Follajes del Caribe S.A.

    • Flower World U.S.A.

    • Fondo para la Paz (FPP)

    • Gaia Artisan Coffee S.A.

    • Gallica Flower PLC

    • Ganadería Colono Real S.A.

    • Ganadería La Piedra

    • Golden Valley Agricultural Research Trust (GART)

    • Grupo Pantaleón

    • ICCRI (Indonesian Coffee and Cocoa Research Institute)

    • IITA (International Institute of Tropical Agriculture)

    • IRTA /Indigo Drones Italimentos Cía. Ltda.

    • JP Tropical Foods Limited

    • Kalsec, S.A.

    • Lawis Soluciones Básicas

    • Mars La Chola C.L.

    • Mc Cain do Brasil Alimentos Ltda.

    • Michigan State University

    • Nevis Department of Agriculture

    • North Dakota State University

    • OIRSA (Organismo Internacional Regional de Sanidad Agropecuaria)

    • PECEGE - Instituo de Pesquisas e Educacao Continuada em Economia e Gestao de Empresas

    • Piladora Santa Rosa

    • Primo Chocolab

    • Quaill Valley Golf Club

    • Rancho Tepehuanes Cattle Company

    • Reserva Natural Cloudbridge

    • Reybanpac, Rey Banano del Pacífico C.A.

    • Rijk Zwaan Promex

    • Santa Elena Ranch

    • Savid Quinta Pasadena

    • Sher Ethiopia PLC

    • Sítio Paineiras da Ingaí

    • Sociedad Agrícola e Industrial San Carlos S.A. (Ingenio San Carlos)

    • Soprinsa Personal S.A.

    • Texas A&M University

    • Universidad Autónoma de Yucatán/ Cesar’s Bananas

    • University of Florida

    • University of Kentucky

    • University of Georgia

    • University of Illinios

    • University of Nebraska

    • University of Nebraska-Lincoln

    • Vista Volcanes S.A.

    • Walmart México & Centroamérica

Selvin Girón Ávila (‘23, Honduras)

Selvin completed his internship in Brazil at the PECEGE Institute, an educational institution associated with the Luiz de Queiroz School of Agriculture (ESALQ) of the University of São Paulo. In the internship, Selvin's main goal was to learn about the use of statistical tools applied to agronomy, oriented explicitly to agricultural supplies.

"I chose this internship because it gave me the opportunity to see and learn agriculture from the perspective of a highly technological country immersed in large-scale precision agriculture, besides reinforcing and learning knowledge of agribusiness and in the scientific part of research. At the same, it gave me the opportunity to learn a new language."

Mekdes Gelete Tiyuke (‘23, Ethiopia)

Mekdes traveled back to her country to do her internship at Sher Ethiopia PLC, the world's largest rose producer, and Europe's leading rose supplier. Her main goal was researching and applying different integrated pest management procedures.

"EARTH gives us the tools and knowledge to be successful professionals in real work environments and, at the same time, to advance the social and environmental changes that the world urgently needs. The University has helped open my eyes to see my country’s opportunities and wealth and learn about the needs of the agricultural industry."

Our Boards and Leadership Team in 2022


Thank you for believing in EARTH’s mission!

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