President Shai Reshef

Shai Reshef is the President of University of the People (UoPeople) — the world’s first non-profit, tuition-free, American, accredited online university, dedicated to opening access to higher education. Grounded in the belief that knowledge is a key ingredient of world peace, UoPeople provides access to collegiate-level studies to qualified individuals regardless of geographic, financial or societal constraints.


An educational entrepreneur, Reshef has over 30 years of experience in the international education market. From 1989 to 2005, he served as Chairman of the Kidum Group, a for-profit educational services company. Between 2001 and 2004, Reshef also chaired KIT eLearning, the online learning partner of the University of Liverpool and the first online university outside of the United States.


Reshef has been widely recognized for his work with UoPeople, including being named one of Fast Company’s 100 Most Creative People in Business; awarded an honorary doctorate from the Open University; selected by OneWorld as one of its ‘People of 2009’; awarded an Ashoka fellowship; granted membership in the Clinton Global Initiative; granted an RSA Fellowship; selected by The Huffington Post as the Ultimate Game Changer in Education; nominated as one of Wired Magazine’s 50 People Changing the World; and selected as a Top Global Thinker by Foreign Policy Magazine.

An expert on the intersection of education and technology, Reshef has spoken internationally at numerous conferences including the Clinton Global Initiative; DLD: Digital, Life, Design; TED; World Economic Forum; EG5 Conference; Google’s Higher Education Summit; EMV Human Values meeting; The Economist’s Annual Human Potential Summit, Financial Times’ Innovation Conference, TEDxOxbridge and TEDxKC, and the Schools for Tomorrow Event for the New York Times. He has also lectured at Yale, Harvard, Stanford and Oxford, among others. Reshef’s TED Talk and Nas Daily video about the University have over 30M views combined. Reshef holds an M.A. in Chinese Politics from the University of Michigan.


Pope Francis praises University of the People, November 2017