Creating a Community of Young Entrepreneurs

Beginning in the fall of 2013, the Close School of Entrepreneurship will create a community of young entrepreneurs at Drexel.  Students of all backgrounds and interests, united by dreams of starting companies and pursuing their entrepreneurial passions, will find a unique residential program supported by specially trained and dedicated faculty and staff. This close-knit community of enterprising students will live together and enjoy targeted training, fun activities, and field trips as well as experienced and connected mentors able to foster their innovative aspirations.

Students will join the founding team of dynamic young innovators and build friendships and networks that will sustain them throughout their college years and subsequent careers, all the while developing essential skills for success in the risk-rewarding economy of tomorrow.

The Entrepreneurship Living-Learning Community will host approximately twenty incoming freshmen comprised of students from different majors across the University.  All full-time entering freshmen planning to live on campus with an interest in innovation and entrepreneurship are encouraged to apply regardless of undergraduate major.  Students in this community will all live on the same floor of Myers Hall.

Entrepreneurial Benefits

One of the primary goals of the program is to provide students with the opportunity to explore and investigate the innovation ecosystem within the Philadelphia region.  The majority of co-curricular activities during the fall and winter terms will expose participants to entrepreneurship within the local community.  During the spring term, students will have the chance to visit regional and national companies.   

  • Mentoring opportunities will be provided to assist students in developing an initial idea, concept or business plan.
  • ELLC students will benefit from guest lectures and entrepreneurial workshops from prominent entrepreneurs in the region representing diverse industry and market sectors.
  • Numerous entrepreneurial field trips will take place exposing students to (1) venture capital and private equity firms, (2) large well-established companies that emphasize innovation and (3) start-ups. 
  • Participants will have one-on-one access to both emerging companies currently incubating in the Baiada Institute for Entrepreneurship and experienced serial entrepreneurs.

A fully funded trip to Silicon Valley is the Capstone Event during spring break.  Building upon the experiences gained in the local region, students in the Entrepreneurship Living Learning Community will visit well known innovative companies in Silicon Valley, in addition to emerging entrepreneurial companies in various industries.

Academic and Social Benefits

The transition to university life can be a challenge for even the most mature and academically talented freshmen.  The program offers support to assist new students during this period of adjustment.  

  • A dedicated administrator is assigned to mentor participants and ensure they receive the full benefits of the program by fulfilling all program requirements.
  • Students will be cohorted in the same residence hall providing a peer-to-peer support network of aspiring entrepreneurs.
  • Students must meet with their academic advisor at least once per term to ensure they are meeting their academic goals.
  • Social events will be offered throughout the year to provide community members with the chance to relax, bond and develop meaningful friendships.


Can only entrepreneurship majors apply for the ELLC?

No. Any full-time freshmen, regardless of academic major, may apply for acceptance into the Entrepreneurship Living-Learning Community.  The Close School takes an interdisciplinary approach to providing entrepreneurial education. The goal is to have a diverse group of students hailing from all colleges and schools at Drexel.

Do I have to live in the residence halls to be eligible for the ELLC?

Yes, because the ELLC is a living-learning community, all participating freshmen are required to live on campus within the residence hall floor designated for the community.

Can a member of the Pennoni Honors College participate in the ELLC?

Yes, honors students may certainly join the community but they must live in the ELLC in Myers Hall.  Honors students choosing to live in honors housing are not eligible for the ELLC.

Do I have to participate in all ELLC programming offered throughout the year?

All ELLC students must join and participate in the Drexel Entrepreneurship Association (DEA).

Students must attend a minimum of 75% of all offered programming which will include guest lectures, field trips, workshops and social events.  Students with 100% participation will be eligible for selection and sponsorship to attend the 2014 IMPACT Conference held by the Greater Philadelphia Alliance for Capital and Technologies (PACT).

 For more information, contact:

Gina Waters, Executive Assistant
Close School of Entrepreneurship