The Entrepreneurial Center for Innovation and Leadership

The Entrepreneurial Center for Innovation and Leadership is founded upon St. John’s long history of developing the whole student while instilling a sense of confidence in creative and independent thinking. With the understanding that the main goal of innovation is to improve the global human condition, graduates from this program will make a difference in the world by combining their innovative spirit with the values of compassion, personal responsibility and service to others. 

Throughout the four-year experience, students have the opportunity for both hands-on and virtual opportunities. Employing the technology already embedded in the curriculum, this center provides a cross-curricular program that gives students the opportunity to use the knowledge and experience from their coursework to create solutions to real-world challenges. The curriculum is designed so that all students have the opportunity to participate. As students matriculate, they have the option to delve deeper into topics and choose additional experiences.

Freshman Experience

At St. John’s, we understand that the ability to lead others begins with leadership of self. Therefore, the first step of the freshman entrepreneurial experience is self-reflection. With a deepened sense of self-knowledge, we can properly examine and focus on understanding and defining values, discussing their importance, learning how to practice them and learning how to articulate them to others.

The freshman experience includes:
  • Presentations by successful innovators, leaders and coaches
  • A class retreat guided by experts in communication skills and leadership training
  • Readings with group discussions

Sophomore and Junior Experience

The concept of innovation and entrepreneurship is not an educational trend; it is the bedrock of the American economy for the foreseeable future. Our center will provide a structure for students to understand, as people of faith, how to be successful in academic and professional environments that drive such creative processes. 
The sophomore and junior experience includes:
  • A two-day workshop with experts in innovation, creative thinking and presentation
  • Webinars, videos, group exercises and blended-learning experiences focused on discovery, reasoning and critical-thinking skills

Senior Capstone Seminar

Seniors who have participated in the center’s opportunities and have successfully completed all prerequisites may apply for the Senior Capstone Seminar. This seminar will develop a passion for innovation and advance the student’s entrepreneurial skills in an environment of healthy competition. Students will have coursework and unique field experiences that expose them to real-life innovation, as well as opportunities to meet and question successful entrepreneurs. At the conclusion of the seminar, students will present a final project to a panel of faculty and outside experts in targeted fields. 

ECIL Faculty

List of 2 members.

  • Joe Casamento 

    Director of the Entrepreneurial Center; Head Football Coach
    202-363-2316 x1060
  • Suzie Kowalewski 

    Assistant Director of the Entrepreneurial Center; Economics
    202-363-2316 x1060


List of 3 news stories.

  • Lessons in Leadership

    On Nov. 6, the entire freshman class participated in the Day of Leadership, sponsored by the Entrepreneurial Center for Innovation and Leadership.
  • Leading By Example

    On Feb. 9, St. John’s welcomed Washington, DC, Attorney General Karl Racine ’81 to campus to speak to students and alumni about ethical leadership.
  • Learning to Lead

    On Nov. 3, the Class of 2020 participated in “A Day of Leadership,” the first freshman workshop experience in St. John’s Entrepreneurial Center curriculum.