Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management

With more than 1.5 million non-profits registered in the United States alone, this graduate certificate in non-profit management will position you to be a leader in this sector. Required coursework covers non-profit governance, policy and practice, and the required management courses seek to develop change agents with an eye towards self-awareness, ethics and strategy. The flexible curriculum also allows for self-selection of electives to meet your specific interests and goals.

The Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management is a 15 credit certificate. All four courses will automatically transfer to the Master of Agribusiness Management and Master of Management and Organizational Leadership programs

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Tuition and Fees

Classes start in January, March, May, and July. 

Curriculum (15 Credits)

(1) Required Course

  • Non-Profit Policy, Governance and Practice (MPP)

(2) Management Electives

  • Ethical Leadership
  • Leading/Organizing Teams
  • Leadership Self-Awareness Leading Strategic Org Change

(3) Additional Electives

Writing and Communications for the Non-Profit, Private and Public Sector Fundraising (NEW)

  • Policy/Law
  • Managerial Communications
  • Organizational Dynamics
  • Ethical Leadership
  • Leading/Organizing Teams
  • Leadership Self-Awareness
  • Leading Strategic Organizational Change
  • American Public Policy
Course Descriptions

Business Acumen I (core course): This course provides a global perspective of organizational environments and the fundamental knowledge required to lead in them. Topics include principles of economics, business law, ethics, marketing strategy, and an overview of management techniques.

Business Acumen II (core course): This course examines accounting and finance principles from a managerial perspective. Students in this course will be able to analyze relevant accounting and financial information for the effective management of organizational resources. As part of this course, students will gain familiarity with excel as well as statistical analyses used to inform decisions.

Leadership Through Self-Awareness (core course): This course presents current leadership theory and leverages self-assessment tools to allow students to explore their personal leadership styles. As part of this course students will participate in intensive, experiential simulation exercises as both a team leader and a team member in order to evaluate their leadership style and its impact on others.

Data-Driven Decision Making (core course): This course integrates concepts from Business Acumen I and Business Acumen II with critical problem-solving methodologies. Upon completion of this program students will be able to 1) build dynamic financial models that consider all relevant data points, 2) effectively generate and evaluate alternatives 3) present persuasive arguments when making managerial level decisions.

Leading and Organizing Teams (core course): This course presents effective methods for building high impact teams. Students will compare and contrast team leadership theories and analyze appropriate applications for them. Topics covered include: providing feedback, motivating staff, implementing team building strategies, aligning organizational structures, developing and implementing training programs.

Policy and Law for Managers (core course): The course examines, from a strategic approach, how the human resource function interacts with legal and regulatory requirements, competency models, job design, recruitment, selection, employee relations, career development, training, compensation and benefits, occupational health, safety and employee wellness. Students evaluate issues related to the management and measurement of people in the work environment, the ethical dilemmas associated with human resources management and the business impact of people related decisions in the workplace.

Managerial Communications (core course): This course will focus on the oral and written communication skills required in management and leadership positions. Students will 1) analyze the inter-relationship between corporate culture and communication expectations, 2) evaluate messaging and context and determine appropriate channels and writing/communication style for each, 3) develop a communication style required to convey persuasive arguments.

Management Capstone (core course): This course requires students to synthesize learnings from across the degree program in order to create a plan for organizational change. Students can either choose a practicum or research-based project for their deliverable which will include a financial model, an executive memo, an organizational structure and a communication plan.


Negotiations and Conflict Management (elective): This course requires students to explore their personal negotiation styles as well as their comfort level with conflict. Through the use of written communication and teleconferencing, students will engage in negotiation simulations and reflect on their successes and failures. They will also learn techniques for conducting difficult conversations and managing challenging employees.

Ethical Leadership (elective): This course examines the intersection of policy, ethics and law in an organizational environment. Through case studies and simulations, students will analyze managerial dilemmas that could lead to conflicts of interest and unethical conduct. Students will reflect on their individual values and explore courageous ways to use them in a leadership role.

Contemporary Business Issues (elective): This course emphasizes the most current topics in business and industry including: healthcare reform, the economy, globalization, ethics, outsourcing, leadership, executive compensation, and managing diversity in the workplace.

Corporate Governance (elective): This course provides students with a comprehensive understanding of the current role and responsibilities of corporate directors, offices, and managers aligned with legislation designed to provide the public with a more “transparent” view of how corporations conduct business. This course also investigates the changing nature of the relationships between the various constituencies that compose a corporate environment.