Credits and costs
As a Graduate of the Penn State Corporate Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CIENT) Graduate Certificate Program, You Can:
- analyze, develop, and assess new products, services, and business models by thinking creatively and strategically
- understand current and future trends and the changing market conditions that influence innovation and entrepreneurship
- demonstrate key competencies in methods and practices associated with new venture creation and corporate innovation
- formulate and articulate ideas, and analyze and communicate new venture plans to key stakeholders
Innovative Curriculum Delivered Completely Online
The certificate curriculum is designed to provide you with both the theoretical knowledge and practical applications of innovation and entrepreneurship. You will explore the concepts of business modeling, ideation, innovation management, design thinking, customer discovery, product development, benchmarking, and business process improvement, while exploring how to develop a corporate culture that fosters innovation, positive change, and forward thinking.
Relevant to Professionals of Multiple Disciplines
Developed by the internationally ranked Smeal College of Business, the CIENT program is an ideal choice for aspiring entrepreneurs and business leaders in a corporate environment, or for those in a STEM field such as engineering or information science. The program is equally relevant for professionals who aspire to launch their own start-up company.
Benefit from Partnering with Smeal College of Business
You'll benefit from Smeal’s commitment to being your partner in lifelong learning. Smeal offers programs, support, and resources for every career stage and life circumstance that will prepare you not only for your next great opportunity but also for the one after that. You'll receive:
- personal advising
- additional networking opportunities
- exclusive access to a virtual hub for those interested in venture creation
Experience a Unique and Flexible Online Curriculum
Learn when it's right for you thanks to flexible, asynchronous online courses. Meet your deadlines by doing work individually, and with project teams, when it’s most convenient for you. You can also attend optional synchronous online sessions for real-time engagement and learning. All course lectures and discussions are recorded so you can access them at any time.
Meet Business Professionals Who Share Your Interests and Passions
Come together with students who are like-minded and excited about innovation, entrepreneurship, and business development. This degree provides access to mature students who are experienced business professionals intent on expanding their skills for leading innovation and launching new ventures. You will have many opportunities to work in teams and collaborate on projects with the potential to initiate and transform business.
Study with a Trusted Leader in Online Education
Penn State has more than 100 years of experience in distance education and more than two decades of experience in online education. Our online learning environment offers you the same quality education our resident students experience in a face-to-face setting.
Information for Military and Veterans
Are you a member of the military, a veteran, or a military spouse? Please visit our military website for additional information regarding financial aid, transfer credits, or application instructions.
This 12-credit certificate consists of four required courses designed to provide you with a solid foundation in principles of entrepreneurship and new venture development. Students in the program can complete this online certificate in as little as 12 months.
Courses are structured to allow you to complete assignments when and where it's most convenient for you. While courses are autonomous, you will have the opportunity to interact and engage with fellow classmates through integrated experiences. This peer-to-peer interaction enhances your learning experience while strengthening your professional network on a global scale.
Required Courses (12 credits)
If you're ready to see when your courses will be offered, visit our public LionPATH course search (opens in new window) to start planning ahead.
Costs and Financial Aid
Graduate tuition is calculated based on the number of credits for which you register. Tuition is due shortly after each semester begins and rates are assessed every semester of enrollment.
|How many credits do you plan to take per semester?||Cost|
|11 or fewer||$1,007 per credit|
|12 or more||$12,082 per semester|
Financial Aid and Military Benefits
Some students may qualify for financial aid. Take the time to research financial aid, scholarships, and payment options as you prepare to apply. Military service members, veterans, and their spouses or dependents should explore these potential military education benefits and financial aid opportunities, as well.
Paying for Your Certificate
Students pursuing a certificate are considered "nondegree," a status that is not eligible for federal student aid, including the Federal Direct Stafford Loan program. A private alternative loan may be an option to consider.
Additionally, Penn State offers many ways to pay for your education, including an installment plan and third-party payments. Penn State World Campus also offers an Employer Reimbursement and Tuition Deferment Plan. Learn more about the options for paying for your education.
Students pursuing a degree and meeting all other eligibility requirements may qualify for financial aid.
How to Apply
Deadlines and Important Dates
Your certificate application should be received by the following deadlines to be considered complete.
- Fall Deadline: Apply by July 1 to start August 21
- Spring Deadline: Apply by November 1 to start January 8
If you have questions about the admissions process, contact our admissions counselors.
For admission to the Graduate School, an applicant must hold either (1) a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or (2) a tertiary (postsecondary) degree that is deemed comparable to a four-year bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution. This degree must be from an officially recognized degree-granting institution in the country in which it operates.
What You Need
Applications are submitted electronically and include a nonrefundable application fee. You will need to upload the following items as part of your application:
GRE and GMAT test scores are NOT required.
English Proficiency — The language of instruction at Penn State is English. With some exceptions, international applicants must take and submit scores for the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Minimum test scores and exceptions are found in the English Proficiency section on the Graduate School's "Requirements for Graduate Admission" page. Visit the TOEFL website for testing information. Penn State's institutional code is 2660.
Vita or Résumé — A one- to two-page listing of your professional experience and education.
Statement of Purpose — Describe how your professional experience and goals align with the Certificate in Corporate Innovation and Entrepreneurship. Please do not exceed 500 words.
Start Your Application
You can begin your online application at any time. Your progress within the online application system will be saved as you go, allowing you to return at any point as you gather additional information and required materials.
Begin the Graduate School application
- Choose "Certificate Admission" as the enrollment type
- Choose "WORLD CAMPUS" as the campus
- Choose "Corporate Innovation and Entrepreneurship" as the certificate
Checking Your Status
You can check the status of your application by using the same login information established for the online application form.
Review the general technical requirements for this program.
Get the resources you need to make informed decisions about your education. Request information on this program and other programs of interest by completing this form.
Ready to take the next step toward your Penn State graduate certificate?
Start or Advance Your Career
Start or Advance Your Career
You can use the knowledge gained from this program and the support of Penn State career resources to pursue careers in a variety of fields, depending on your goals.
A Head Start toward a Master’s Degree
A Head Start toward a Master’s Degree
Not only can this program help create opportunities in your career, it can also give you a solid head start toward a full master’s degree.
To learn more about the Graduate Certificate in Corporate Innovation and Entrepreneurship, please contact:
Penn State Smeal College of Business
Professional Graduate Programs Office
Email: [email protected]
For general questions about the application process, please contact:
World Campus Admissions Counselors
Email: [email protected]
DegreePh.D., Business Administration, Penn State
DegreeMaster of Organizational Behavior, Brigham Young University
DegreeB.S., Brigham Young University
Dr. Shawn Clark is director of the Farrell Center for Corporate Innovation and Entrepreneurship and a clinical professor of innovation and entrepreneurship in the Smeal College of Business. He teaches courses in corporate innovation, entrepreneurship, business planning, strategic management, enterprise modeling, project management, and business transformation consulting. His research focuses on business architecture modeling, corporate innovation, global prescience, enterprise transparency, and the strategic alignment of business and information technology.
Raghu GarudDegreePh. D., Strategic Management and Organization, University of Minnesota
Raghu Garud is the Farrell Chair in Innovation and Entrepreneurship and a professor of management and organization at Penn State. His research explores the emergence and adoption of novelty. Raghu was recognized by the Technology and Innovation Management Division of the Academy of Management as its distinguished scholar for 2020. In addition to many journal articles, Raghu has co-edited or co-authored several books.
He has served on the faculty at the Stern School of Business at New York University. Raghu also has been a Fellow of the Sydney Sussex College, the University of Cambridge, a visiting scholar at VU Amsterdam, the Copenhagen Business School, the University of Bologna, the University of St. Gallen, The Indian School of Business, and the Singapore Management University.
DegreePh.D., American Studies, University of Michigan
DegreeM.A., American Studies, University of Michigan
DegreeM.A.R., Ethics, Yale University
DegreeA.B., Political Science and History, Duke University
Dr. John Jordan has been working at the intersection of technology and management for more than 20 years. At the Ernst & Young Center for Business Innovation, he directed internet research for the Wired for Profit multi-client program, then moved to the staff of the chief technology officer before returning to academia. He has won teaching awards at Michigan, Harvard, and Penn State, and is the author of five books. One book, Robots (in the MIT Press Essential Knowledge series), has been translated into six languages. Another book, on 3D printing (MIT Press), will be published in 2019.
DegreeDBA, Business Administration, Georgia State University
DegreeM.A., International Business (International Relations), Webster University
DegreeB.A., Economics, University of Texas at Austin
Dr. Jeanette Miller is associate director of the Farrell Center for Corporate Innovation and Entrepreneurship and an assistant clinical professor of entrepreneurship in the Smeal College of Business. She teaches courses in new venture creation, entrepreneurship, and managing startups. Her research focuses on social impact, student entrepreneurship, and measurement of impact investing on startups.
Penn State Smeal Advantage
More options, greater flexibility and a commitment to lifelong learning
The desire for knowledge and professional growth spans a lifetime. That is why the Penn State Smeal College of Business offers a portfolio of professional graduate programs for all stages of your career. In partnership with Penn State World Campus, Smeal makes it easy to customize a learning plan to your unique career aspirations and busy schedule. Penn State Smeal offers you a lifetime of learning with more concentrations and one of the most integrated, flexible offerings of online and residential programs in the United States.
An entire team dedicated to your success
Personal advising – Our experts will explain the many options that Penn State Smeal offers and will help you refine your career strategy and craft the educational experience best suited to your interests. It all starts with a simple, but critical question: “What are your goals?”
Career coaching* – Our Alumni Career Services team will support you across all career stages with professional advancement opportunities and coaching to help you stay focused on achieving your goals.
Delivering the best of online and in-person learning for a rich educational experience
We understand that today’s professional learners want meaningful discussion and interaction with faculty and classmates along with the technologies and flexible approaches of contemporary online learning. By aligning the best of both worlds, we bring richness, depth, and diversity to the overall educational experience.
Courses designed to engage and motivate the professional student
Creative Teams consisting of a lead faculty member, a Teaching Support Specialist (TSS), and an Instructional Designer use advanced analytics to develop and deliver contemporary graduate courses that promote application and engagement. We strive to innovate in ways that others don’t.
A real-world perspective
- Industry professionals inside the virtual classroom – Many of Penn State Smeal’s courses feature industry professionals who have been in the trenches and work hard to make an impact every day. These individuals, most of whom hold a Smeal graduate degree, partner with our renowned faculty to provide a rich academic context with real-world application.
- Global immersion* – This unique, optional experience will enhance your ability to communicate cross-culturally, adapt to evolving business environments, and manage the risks and benefits of operating on a global scale. Any student pursing a full degree from Smeal may participate in this optional, faculty-led experience for elective credit. Previous destinations have included Shanghai, China; Johannesburg, South Africa; Prague, Czech Republic; Santiago, Chile; and Zagreb, Croatia.
One of the largest and most influential networks in the country
At Penn State, you are part of a worldwide community of instructors, learners, and more than 750,000 alumni who support one another and make a meaningful impact.
More than 90,000 Smeal alumni benefit from connections around the globe as well as networking events, podcasts, webinars, a powerful LinkedIn community, and opportunities for volunteerism.
* Services are available only to students and alumni of Penn State Smeal’s degree programs and online degrees led by Smeal and delivered through the World Campus. Students and alumni of online graduate certificates are not eligible to receive these benefits unless they are also enrolled in a degree program.