Executive Committee

Miguel Carmelo

CarmeloPresident of Universidad Europea and CEO of Laureate International Universities Europe

He received a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics and Business Administration from Universidad Complutense de Madrid and a PhD from Universidad Autónoma de Madrid. He worked for Unilever Spain between 1982 and 2000, where he held various positions of responsibility: in 1990 as Vice-President of Marketing; in 1993 as President of a European division in England responsible for 17 countries; and, finally, in 1997 he was made President and General Manager of Lever Spain. For more than 15 years, he collaborated in the teaching area of several universities in Madrid and with Kingston University.

Nélson Santos De Brito

CEO of Universidad Europea and Laureate International Universities Spain and Portugal

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from the Institute of Mathematics and Management, two graduate degrees from the Higher Institute of Business and Labour Sciences in Corporate Finance and Business Management, and a specialization in Marketing from Universidade Católica Portuguesa, a discipline in which he completed further training at the Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management. He joined the Laureate network in 2010 as CEO for Portugal. This followed a highly successful career in the finance and general management department of Kraft Foods Portugal.

Isabel Fernández


She holds a Bachelor’s Degree and PhD in Computer Engineering from Universidad de Oviedo. After relocating to Madrid, she earned Financial Risk Manager (FRM) certification at Universidad San Pablo-CEU. She has taught at such business schools as the ICEMDESIC. In 2012, she joined Universidad Europea as Director of the School of Engineering and, in 2014, she was appointed as General Manager and Rector of Universidad Europea de Canarias. At the end of 2014, she was appointed Vice Rector of Planning and Development. In July 2015, she was appointed as Rector of Universidad Europea.

Estíbaliz Barranco

EstibalizGeneral Manager for Portugal

She holds a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration from Universidad Comercial de Deusto and completed the Master's Programme in Applied Management at the same institution. She worked in the mass market goods sector between 2002 and 2007, occupying marketing department positions of responsibility focused on brand management. In 2007, she joined Universidad Europea de Madrid as Marketing Manager and was later appointed as Director of New Projects and Expansion and as Vice-President of Marketing. She currently holds the position of General Manager for Portugal.

Macarena Fernández-España

Vice-President of Operations for Spain and Portugal

She holds a Bachelor's Degree in Economics and Business Studies from Universidad Pontificia de Comillas (ICADE). She worked at various companies between 1998 and 2010, including Arthur Andersen, Grupo Flick and Grupo Bergé, holding various positions of responsibility that consolidated her experience in such areas as Auditing, Financial Management Control, and Administration. In 2011, she joined Universidad Europea de Madrid as Business Development and Expansion Project Financial Director. In April 2012, she was appointed as Vice-President of Operations.

Hugo Contente

ContenteVice-President of Human Resources for Spain and Portugal

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology from Lisbon University and a Master’s Degree in Business Management from the IESE Business School. Hugo joined Laureate in 2011 as Director of Human Resources at Universidade Europeia, following a very active10-year career as a consultant. In 2014, he was appointed Student Services Director for Spain and Portugal, a position he continues to hold at this time.

María Eizaguirre

EizaguirreVice-President of Marketing and Admissions for Spain and Portugal

She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Anthropology from Durham University and received a Rhodes Scholarship to study at the University of Oxford, where she completed a PhD in Biological Anthropology. She subsequently received a research grant at University College London. She has held various positions of responsibility in the field of marketing at such organizations as Research International, Young & Rubicam and Kraft Foods. Prior to joining our institution, María combined positions as Marketing Director at IE University and Strategy Director at IE Business School and IE University, where she also taught.

Rafael Sáenz

CFO for Spain and Portugal

He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from Universidad de Extremadura and an MBA from the IE Business School, and has over 20 years’ professional experience in positions of responsibility within the financial departments of high turnover multinationals in Europe and Latin America. To date, he has been CFO at Zumos Palma (Zumosol) - one of the fastest growing Spanish drinks companies. Previously, he was CFO at Heineken Spain, before which he spent 16 years at Kraft Foods where he was eventually appointed as CFO for Spain and Portugal.

José María Palomares

ChemaDirector of Corporate Communication at Universidad Europea for Spain and Portugal

José María Palomares holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Geography and history from Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, and has completed various graduate programs at the ESADE Business School, INSEAD and the IE Business School. Prior to joining the university, he was Vice-President of Communication for Spain and Portugal at ING Bank and, before that, Communication and Relational Marketing Manager at Telefónica Empresas. José María Palomares also has extensive teaching experience at both universities and business schools.

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  • Excelencia Academica Academic excellence

    Leader in facilities and technology. The 2nd ranking private university in Spain in scientific production. An average of 1 professor per 23 students. Advanced technology applied to learning.

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  • InternacionalidadInternational context 

    282 exchange agreements. Programs and internships in more than 40 countries. 70 programs 100% in English or in bilingual formats.

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  • Desarrollo Competencial Skills development

    100% of our students receive an integrated education. Excellent students program. Development of skills such as problem solving, leadership.

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  • Empleabilidad Focus on employment

    90% of our students find work in the first year. 3,000 agreements with companies. 2000 curricular internships a year. 10% outside Spain.

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