Crossing global frontiers with the Executive Master in International Development (2024)

4 min read

Developed jointly with the United Nations Systems Staff College (UNSSC), the Executive Master in International Development is an innovative program geared toward experienced professionals who want to make a difference. Part-time and hands-on, its distinguishing feature is its blended format, which combines online learning with face-to-face residential periods in Spain and New York.

The Executive Master in International Development: a unique approach to blended learning in Europe

It’s no secret that the Executive Master in International Development attracts a uniquely global profile. Our participants already have years of experience behind them—and they’re ready to leave a positive impact on a global scale. To accommodate even the busiest professionals, we’ve designed the program to seamlessly integrate with their schedules, providing an opportunity to learn that doesn’t compromise career advancement.

Residential Periods in Madrid and New York

Since the program involves a significant amount of online learning, these one-week residential periods offer students an invaluable opportunity to meet professors and classmates face-to-face.

Unique networking opportunities

Through field trips in Spain and New York, participants can build strong relationships and expand their global network by connecting with top sustainability and development professionals. These connections can not only foster collaborations and open doors to new opportunities, but also enhance participants’ professional growth and impact in the field.

Real-world experience

These residential weeks also offer an opportunity to see classroom theories play out in the real world. Participants can leverage this practical, hands-on experience to access competitive internships, work placements and full-time professional opportunities in the field.

Global exposure

International development professionals need to understand complex global contexts—and these field trips provide just that. Through travel, participants acquire in-depth global insights that lead to professional advancement.

Applying online learning to the real world: insights from the New York residential period

Orapim Pakdeesongkram is an Executive Master in International Development student who participated in the residential period in New York. Since she works in the Department of Peace Operations, based at the UN headquarters in the city, it was a little bit like coming home.

However, a full roster of exciting activities made the experience unique. “It was a fantastic week, packed with briefings from incredible guest speakers with one goal: to support sustainable development,” she says. Participants heard from the Spanish Institute for Foreign Trade (ICEX) and various UN entities, including the UNDP, UN DCO and UNICEF, among others.

“One of the best experiences was receiving a briefing on the UN 2.0 Quintet of Change—which is the program’s foundation—at the UN Secretariat Building.”

Crossing global frontiers with the Executive Master in International Development (1)

Orapim shared her thoughts on the New York residential period, as well as the program’s blended learning approach.

How did the New York residential period enhance your professional development?

I had a chance to learn from incredible speakers throughout the field trip, and the questions my classmates asked were stimulating and thought-provoking. It also gave me a good idea of how I want to apply the knowledge I’ve acquired throughout the program to do meaningful work. I’d say that I had my eureka moment during this residential week!

How do you plan to leverage what you learned from the field trip to advance professionally in the international development field?

As military personnel, we don’t often discuss the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) or see their link with military tasks.

Crossing global frontiers with the Executive Master in International Development (2)

That’s why I joined this program—to explore the possibilities and see how I can do more to serve.

As a result, I intend to use my learnings to explore using military resources to support the implementation of the SDGs. This will be the game-changer in solving the funding issue and community outreach in hard-to-reach areas, ensuring no one is left behind. I also plan to develop my Applied Research Project to connect the dots and discover new opportunities to serve the global community.

Which aspects of the program are beneficial for aspiring international development professionals?

Personally, I’ve found the Executive Master in International Development to be very well-structured. The blended format enhances the learning experience and offers the flexibility to manage your priorities.

The program content includes all the crucial aspects to build a new generation of professionals equipped with the essential skills required in today’s increasingly uncertain world. I’ve learned how international development can play a vital role in providing sustainable solutions to global problems.

How has the mix of online learning and in-person residential periods enhanced your learning experience?

I’m so grateful that most of the program is conducted online because it suits people with full-time jobs. The residential weeks provide an incredible opportunity to meet our instructors and the program’s administrative team, connect with classmates, learn from guest speakers and visit cultural landmarks.

Although these were short trips, they were packed with unforgettable experiences. They created a bond and helped us understand each other’s diverse backgrounds, which enhanced our learning experience later during the virtual sessions.

Gain the full benefits of in-person and online learning in Spain

According to Orapim, the Executive Master in International Development’s blended learning format “gives students the flexibility to plan their life and organize their priorities.”

Crossing global frontiers with the Executive Master in International Development (3)

As a result, she was able to refocus her career according to her long-term goals, planting the seeds for success in the world of sustainability and international development.

Do you want a career that lets you make a positive impact around the world?

The Executive Master in International Development empowers you to find innovative solutions for global sustainability issues.

Learn more about the program

Crossing global frontiers with the Executive Master in International Development (2024)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Lilliana Bartoletti

Last Updated:

Views: 5895

Rating: 4.2 / 5 (53 voted)

Reviews: 92% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Lilliana Bartoletti

Birthday: 1999-11-18

Address: 58866 Tricia Spurs, North Melvinberg, HI 91346-3774

Phone: +50616620367928

Job: Real-Estate Liaison

Hobby: Graffiti, Astronomy, Handball, Magic, Origami, Fashion, Foreign language learning

Introduction: My name is Lilliana Bartoletti, I am a adventurous, pleasant, shiny, beautiful, handsome, zealous, tasty person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.