Forming a New Generation of Leaders


"The world needs men and women who have a Catholic education and Catholic formation. It needs builders who can rebuild the Church and culture. Those are the men and women Franciscan University sends forth."

Fr. Dave Pivonka, TOR '89

President, Franciscan University of Steubenville


It requires more than good intentions to transform a culture. It also requires wisdom, grace, determination, commitment, and love. It requires leaders who possess those virtues and are striving, in everything they do, to be conformed to Christ.

For nearly 75 years, Franciscan University has helped form those leaders. We believe, however, that we can do more. We believe the culture needs us to do more. As the world grows ever darker, it needs more men and women, in every sector of society, capable of leading with the light of Christ.

"[A] new generation of builders is needed. Moved not by fear or violence but by the urgency of genuine love, they must learn to build, brick by brick, the city of God within the city of man." -Pope St. John Paul II



Core Components of Entrepreneurship Program and Leadership Institute:

Franciscan University launched the Leadership Institute in 2021, redoubling our efforts to form those leaders. Through retreats, a speaker series, visiting professorships, and outreach, the institute aims to form today's and tomorrow's leaders with a uniquely Franciscan spirit, one that is orthodox, dynamic, upholds the dignity of the human person, and seamlessly integrates faith and reason.

One of the most central aspects of the Leadership Institute will be an Entrepreneurship Program. Housed within the Business Program, this new interdisciplinary academic initiative will offer all students from all majors the chance to acquire skills and experience they need to launch their own for-profit or nonprofit mission-oriented ventures.

Hallmarks of this new interdisciplinary program include:

  • Classes for students from any major that will focus on the knowledge, skills, and practices essential for entrepreneurial success.

  • A curriculum that uniquely draws from best practices in both the business and nonprofit world.

  • Innovative offerings, such as project simulations and business competitions, to drive student engagement and provide seed money to the winners for their new venture.

  • Required work and internship experiences.

  • Ongoing interactions with business and nonprofit leaders, on and off campus.

  • An underlying program philosophy that is deeply Catholic and Franciscan, grounded in Church teaching and oriented toward transforming the Church and culture in Christ.



Your gift to the Entrepreneurship Program at Franciscan University will play a key role in helping us to launch this new initiative. This includes:

  • Course development

  • Securing visiting professors who are recognized leaders in their fields

  • Bringing inspiring speakers to campus

  • Facilitating trips for students to meet with business and nonprofit leaders

  • Launching the Investment Incubator Competition to fund students' entrepreneurial ventures

  • Developing an entrepreneurship major, as well as an online degree or certificate program

Will you help us in this work, take a stand with us as we shine a light into today's culture and raise up young leaders with the skills to make a difference?

Together, we can help future generations change the world.