Saint Peter’s Entrepreneurs Gain a Valuable Resource in Mission 50 Innovation and Commercialization Lab

Ribbon-cutting for the Mission 50 Innovation and Commercialization Lab on November 8. Photo credit: Marie Papp Photography.

Current and future entrepreneurs of Saint Peter’s have an exciting new resource to support their endeavors – a dedicated space in the Mission 50 Innovation and Commercialization Lab in Hoboken, N.J.

On November 8, representatives from Saint Peter’s University and the Frank J. Guarini School of Business participated in a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the lab, which is located on the second floor of Mission 50, the newly expanded and rebranded boutique building and coworking space located at 50 Harrison Street.

The lab will support the entrepreneurship programs at Saint Peter’s University as well as the three other Hudson County colleges and universities including Stevens Institute of Technology, New Jersey City University and Hudson County Community College. It is comprised of four dedicated offices for each institution and a collaboration space in Mission 50’s coworking hub. Each school will have access to its own workspace, as well as conference and meeting rooms equipped with state-of-the-art video conferencing and a range of onsite amenities.

Saint Peter’s University President Eugene J. Cornacchia, Ph.D. speaking at the Mission 50 Innovation and Commercialization Lab ribbon-cutting. Photo credit: Marie Papp Photography.

“Together, thanks to Mission 50, we are all providing a powerful resource for our students with this space, enabling them with the best possible means to transform their ideas,” said Eugene J. Cornacchia, Ph.D., president of Saint Peter’s University. “It brings our talented students from local schools together and provides them with a unique environment to network with peers. Our students will come here to work and may find themselves sitting across from their next business partner or a future customer. The opportunities are endless.”

Owned and operated by JDA Group LLC (JDA), Mission 50 has a long history of serving independent professionals, growing entrepreneurial companies and mature enterprises in the Greater New York City marketplace. Its multi-million-dollar transformation, completed in 2021, responds to evolving workplace needs.

“As one of the first coworking spaces to open in the region, Mission 50 is celebrating 10 years of fostering entrepreneurship and business growth,” said Gregory Dell’Aquila, JDA’s founder and CEO. “It has also been our company’s mission to support the entrepreneurs of tomorrow by working hand-in-hand with Hudson County’s institutions of higher learning. In line with that mission, we are proud to be establishing the Mission 50 Innovation and Commercialization Lab.”

Dell’Aquila has served on the Frank J. Guarini School of Business Advisory Board since 2017. He also led the charge to sponsor the School’s 2021 Shark Tank Competition and invited the contest’s winner to participate in a countywide pitch competition in the spring with a $5,000 cash prize.

“This is a great example of what is possible when leaders in the private sector and institutions of higher learning think creatively about how they work together to promote innovation and greater opportunities for our citizens in this economy,” said U.S. Senator Robert Menendez ’76 at the ribbon-cutting. “The task of taking an idea and bringing it to market is no easy feat. That’s why this lab holds so much promise.”

Students interested in using the space can contact Mary Kate Naatus, Ph.D., KPMG dean of the Frank J. Guarini School of Business.