Welcome to Swarthmore’s Center for Innovation and Leadership!
Leadership in the 21st century demands vision and a sense of purpose, cross-cultural fluency, creative thinking, innovation, and flexibility. The Center for Innovation and Leadership (CIL) provides opportunities for Swarthmore students to develop the abilities to lead and inspire, to listen and learn in ways that meet the challenges of our time, and to reflect the values of our community. Thus the CIL will not only promote leadership but also ethical leadership and not only creativity but also creativity invested in the public good.
The CIL strives to give all Swarthmore students the individualized support they need to become strong imaginative leaders of tomorrow. We support students by creating opportunities to hone their leadership skills in capacities like team-based collaboration, the development of social and cultural capital, and inventive thinking processes. Students, staff, and faculty are all welcome to bring forth new and interesting ideas under the umbrella of the CIL.
Engage Innovative Thinking to Foster Student Leadership Practice.
Apply to be a CIL Leadership Fellow
We're actively recruiting our first cohort of CIL Leadership Fellows for next Spring! The Leadership Fellows will work through a 10-week leadership development curriculum prior to competing in the Collegiate Leadership Competition (CLC) in April.
Applications to be a Leadership Fellow are due December 1st. Weekly meetings will tentatively begin on Thursday, January 24th. The competition with CLC will take place on April 12th and 13th.
Read more about this opportunity on our CIL Leadership Fellows page and apply today to be part of the first cohort!
October and November Programs
Connect4: Leadership Series
Thursdays | October 25th, November 1st, 8th, and 15th @ 4:30-5:30 pm | Kohlberg 116
Connect4 is a four-part workshop series that connects four different areas of leadership facing today's emerging leaders. Together, we will practice effective communication, balance stressors, and manage conflict in a workshop style setting. Each workshop will be in the same place at the same time, just a week apart.
- October 25 - What is Leadership
- November 1 - Communication is Key
- November 8 - Managing Stress
- November 15 - Navigating Conflict
Tuesday, October 30th @ 5 - 6:30 pm | Shane Lounge
So, you have an idea...now what? Once you have an idea, it can be hard to know what you should do next. Idea Night will walk you through a process of what to do when you first have an idea and teach you how to turn it into something manageable and actionable. Come with an idea or come ready to learn the process!
Find Your Founders
Wednesday, November 7th @ 5 - 6:30 pm | IC Dome
Find Your Founders is the unofficial launch of the 2019 SwatTank Competition. This program will help students meet other peers with similar interests, brainstorm ideas, and establish teams. Learn about the SwatTank process and meet other interested students!
Friday, November 30th @ 5-8pm - Saturday, December 1st @ 10-6 | Haverford College
The CIL and Haverford’s Innovation Program are partnering with educators from Malvern Preparatory School up to host a two day challenge. Over a day and a half, students from Swarthmore and Haverford will be invited to solve real-world problems and present possible solutions that may be implemented in our own backyard using Design Thinking, the Business Model Canvas, and more. Philabundance, an organization fighting to end hunger in the Philadelphia area, has agreed to offer real issues they are facing to present to students to use in their challenge.