About APS Student Life

  • How do students find accommodations in the Philippines and Costa Rica?

Both Ateneo de Manila University (AdMU) and UPEACE provide support in finding housing to help students in this process.

  • Does the APS programme have scheduled vacation periods?

National holidays in both Costa Rica and the Philippines are observed by AdMU and UPEACE.  While students are studying in Costa Rica, there is a vacation of approximately 1 month during the holiday season in December/January, and a 10 day break during Easter (March or April).

  • Since 50% of students are from Japan, do Japanese students only hang out with other Japanese students?

Given the international nature of UPEACE and the APS, students are exposed to people from all over the world, and all students are encouraged to take advantage of the diversity of cultures, backgrounds and languages that the experience offers.


About The Nippon Foundation Scholarship

  • What costs are covered by the scholarship from TNF?

The APS scholarship covers tuition, airfare, transit and some visa costs for all programme components.  A monthly stipend of 700/800 USD is provided to students throughout the duration of the programme. 

  • What costs are covered by the student?

The student is responsible for the management of their stipends, which includes all reading materials, printing costs and living expenses.  Any costs related to document authorization needed for visa purposes will also be covered by the student, as well as some visa costs.

  • I know the scholarship only covers the student's expenses, but can I stay with my family throughout the programme (provided I pay for my family’s expenses)?

Students are welcome to bring their families with them throughout their studies at their own expense, as long as this does not interfere with their ability to participate in all programme activities.

  • Does the programme cover medical insurance?

A basic emergency medical insurance is provided throughout the duration of the programme.  The insurance plan has a per-event deductible that the student will be responsible for paying in the event of illness.  During their studies in Costa Rica, students will also be included in the Social Security Health System.  It is recommended that students consider purchasing an additional medical insurance on their own behalf.

  • What is the duration of the scholarship?

The scholarship begins when the student travels to Manila for the English Language Training and concludes after the final graduation (21 months for Intermediate English students and 18 months for Advanced English students). In the event that the student leaves the programme early, either by their own choice or as a result of failing to meet academic requirements, the scholarship will be withdrawn.


FAQ About the APS Academic Programme

About the Academic Programme 

  • I’d like to know the specific schedule of the APS Programme.

Unfortunately not all of the specific dates of programme activities have been determined at this time. For more information, please write to specialprogrammes@upeace.org and refer to the APS Academic Calendar.

  • On the webpage of “Environmental Security and Governance,” Spanish skills are recommended. Can I choose this major without any knowledge of the Spanish language?

Knowledge in the Spanish language is advantageous in studies at UPEACE in Costa Rica; however, it is not a requirement for any of the UPEACE regular programmes.

  • Can I choose to write a Master Thesis instead of implementing a field project?

The APS is designed to provide Asian professionals the theoretical and practical tools to enable them to successfully work in peacebuilding initiatives.  The field project acts as one of the major means of enhancing students’ practical skills in peacebuilding projects and thus is a mandatory component of the programme. Students are not allowed to write a Master’s thesis in exchange for implementing a field project.

  •  I’d like to know the class schedule for both the Ateneo and UPEACE portions of the programme (what time are lectures and how long do they last?)

UPEACE classes run from Monday through Friday, either from 9am-12pm or 1pm-4pm (students will either have a morning class or afternoon class).  Courses typically have duration of 3 weeks, with a short 3-4 day break between courses. The Asia-Focus Courses in Ateneo de Manila also have a similar scheduling scheme.

Classes in the English Training component, however, run for the entire day. Two sessions are scheduled daily, one from 9am-12pm and another from 1pm-4pm. There is a short 3-4 day break in between the Intermediate and Advanced English Modules.


FAQ on Job Hunting

 About Job Hunting

  • How can students find employment while either in The Philippines or Costa Rica?

Students are encouraged to research and apply for professional opportunities as early as they can. There are several advisors and academics in both UPEACE and Ateneo de Manila who are open for consultation regarding future professional employment.  Students are also encouraged to build their professional network with visiting professors.

  •  I’d like to know the breakdown of APS Alumni participation at UN and UN-afilliated organisations?

From the last three cohorts of APS graduates, 6 are working at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP); 3 at the International Organization for Migration (IOM); 2 at the UN World Food Programme (WFP); 3 at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNCHR); and 1 at each the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Most APS alumni in these UN organizations have entered at the Programme Officer level.

Other alumni are engaged in international peacebuilding work through employment in various international development or peacebuilding organizations.  Some of these organizations include the Poverty Alleviation Fund; Save the Children; OxFam; Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA): the Global Environmental Organizations; the World Wildlife Fund (WWF); The Asian Development Bank; The Philippine Office of the Presidential Advisor on the Peace Process; Hearts of Gold; Service for Peace; Action Aid; and the Hiroshima Peace Center.


FAQ on APS Alumni

About Contacting Alumni

  • I have some questions that I would like to ask APS Alumni.  Is it possible for me to get in contact with them?

Yes, we would be happy to put you in contact with one of our APS Alumni.  Please contact specialprogrammes@upeace.org with your request.