students in front of spanish cathedral
Dr. Johann Ducharme (left) and Raven Scott (right) with students from ENT 303B in front of the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela.

A study abroad course, taught by our Postdoctoral Fellow in Character Education, Dr. Johann Ducharme and Associate Director of Programming Raven Scott, took students on a pilgrimage to walk a section of the Camino de Santiago. This course, ENT 303B: Developing Entrepreneurial Character on Pilgrimage, examined the intersections of developing entrepreneurial leadership and character virtues while on pilgrimage.

A pilgrimage is a form of educational journey, as well as a journey of self-discovery. Students studied how visionary, entrepreneurial ideas are developed via purposeful, meaningful leisure, engagement with different cultures, and serendipitous meetings, while interrogating their own ways of viewing the world, community, and self in the process. Students also studied and explored character virtues such as perseverance, courage, teamwork, and open-mindedness experientially by journeying through reflective and rigorous dialogue on pilgrimage. 

Students after receiving their Compostela for completing the pilgrimage.

Students walked 10 to 12 miles over the course of seven days in May 2023. At the end of each day, the students reflected on people they met on their travels who impacted them and shared with the group a quote, poem or passage of reading that resonated with them. “I hope each of the students take away a greater self-awareness in their professional and personal identities,” says Ducharme, “but most specifically their character.” Once students completed the pilgrimage and reached the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela, they each received a Compostela, an official document certifying that they completed their walk of the Camino de Santiago.