Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management

Our part-time, 12-credit online graduate certificate is designed to provide you with the knowledge, tools, and peer-to-peer interaction to help you thrive in your nonprofit work and career.

For Current Practitioners

Each week, you will strengthen core nonprofit management and operational skills. Course assignments are designed to allow you to bring the specific challenges of your organization to your learning; allowing you to have an immediate impact on your organization while you learn.

For Those Entering the Field

For students not yet working in the field, we have strong case studies and partnerships with top nonprofits allowing you to use real data in your course assignments. We immerse you.

Your Instructors

Our instructors are University of Connecticut public policy faculty and leading practitioners in the field of nonprofit management. You are learning with subject matter experts. Our faculty bring real-life experiences to the classroom.

Your Online Learning Experience

You are learning with nonprofit professionals from across Connecticut and the United States. The result is a highly dynamic class environment that brings together a rich mix of seasoned knowledge, real-life experience, perspectives, and opinions that strengthen the class dialogue and your learning experience.

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Program Details

Curriculum and Courses

Certificate students must complete four of the below 3-credit graduate courses.

Required Courses:

  • PP 5323: Leading and Governing Nonprofit Organizations (Fall semester)
  • PP 5328: Business Functions for Nonprofits (Fall semester)

Choose two of the following courses:

  • PP 5319: Program Development and Evaluation (Spring semester)
  • PP 5324: Grant Writing and Government Contracting (Spring semester)
  • PP 5329: Nonprofit Advocacy, Government Relations, and Law (Spring semester)
  • PP 5336: Fund Development and Nonprofit Sustainability (Fall semester)
  • PP 5366: Executive Leadership (Summer session)

To be awarded a certificate, a student must satisfactorily complete (with a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher) a set of courses specified in the certificate program requirements. Please see the Graduate School Academic Regulations for further information.

Course Descriptions
Anne McIntyre-Lahner

Anne McIntyre-Lahner

PP 5319 – Program Development and Evaluation
(3 credits, Spring online)

Taught by Anne McIntyre-Lahner, former Director of Planning and Evaluation, CT Department of Children and Families

This course is geared toward professionals who are engaged in, or preparing to enter, the nonprofit sector. The course will focus on program development and program evaluation, their interconnectedness, and how that interconnectedness can support nonprofit professionals in increasing program effectiveness. Topics include program planning frameworks, program development, performance measurement, performance management, data collection, and evaluation.

David Garvey

David Garvey

PP 5323 – Leading and Governing Nonprofit Organizations
(3 credits, Fall online)

Taught by Dr. David Garvey, Director of Nonprofit Outreach, School of Public Policy

This course examines the strategies and skills of leading and governing that support the building of a healthy and sustainable nonprofit organization that meets the needs of its community and stakeholders. A strong focus is placed on applying leadership skills that build the organization, engage with the community and manage strategic partnerships. In addition, a strong emphasis of the course focuses on developing effective nonprofit governing boards operating practices and cultivating the key working partnership with the CEO.

Alyssa Goduti

Alyssa Goduti

PP 5324 – Grant Writing and Government Contracting
(3 credits, Spring and Summer Session online)

Taught by Alyssa Goduti, President & CEO of Ädelbrook

This course will provide the student with the core understanding and approaches to researching private and government grants to fulfill the work of a nonprofit. The course provides a strong grounding in grant and proposal writing that supports the usage of program outcomes, financial, and qualitative data to “tell the story” of a nonprofit and its case for financial support. The course also provides a strong foundation in the skills essential to responding to RFPs for government contracts for service provision, along with examining the pros and cons of contracting with government agencies. In addition, the course will focus on the holistic organizational system approach to responding to grants and government contract RFPs, along with collaborative multi-agency collective strategies which can strengthen proposals and the impact of final deliverables.

Dawn Bryant

Dawn Bryant

PP 5328 – Business Functions for Nonprofits
(3 credits, Fall online)

Taught by Dawn Bryant, CPA, Audit Director of Viola, Chrabascz, Reynolds & Co. LLP

This course examines the principles, issues and skills of financial management and accountability in managing the financial resources of a nonprofit. Topics include variance analysis, nonprofit accounting, financial statement and ratio analysis, forecasting, cash flow analysis, internal controls, and other key financial tools. A strong focus is placed on developing your proficiency in the use of financial data for organization and program decision-making, and to communicate and work with organization stakeholders (governing boards, funders and community) in using financial data and tools.

Jason Jakubowski

Jason Jakubowski

PP 5329 – Nonprofit Advocacy, Government Relations, and Law
(3 credits, Spring online)

Taught by Jason Jakubowski, President and CEO, Connecticut Foodshare

This course will provide students with a comprehension of the legal landscape, rights, and obligations in which nonprofit organizations operate in the United States. A second pillar of the course is the examination of advocacy practices of nonprofits with government in support of its client communities, and the support community voice and action in civil discourse and grass roots action with government and other stakeholders. The course will also the review of the legal and tax implications related to advocacy, lobbying, and political activity of nonprofit organizations.

Ruodan Zhang

Ruodan Zhang

PP 5336 – Fund Development and Nonprofit Sustainability
(3 credits, Fall online)

Taught by Dr. Ruodan Zhang, Assistant Professor, School of Public Policy

This course will provide the student with the important skills to address the key questions and practical applications of developing funding to support the financial requirements for nonprofits to meet their mission. Key to this learning objective will be the development of the skills needed to create a fund development plan that uses diverse funding strategies to meet nonprofits’ long-term financial sustainability requirements. We will examine essential aspects of key philanthropic funding methods: general fundraising, annual fund, major gift, capital, planned giving campaigns, and the demographic dynamics of giving. The course will also investigate the growing usage of new revenue development methods; such on-line giving, earned-income enterprise, social impact bonds, and other developing methods of funding for organizational sustainability.

Mohamad Alkadry

Mohamad Alkadry

PP 5366 – Executive Leadership
(3 credits, Summer Session - hybrid)

Taught by Dr. Mohamad Alkadry, Professor, School of Public Policy

This course is designed to help students improve their skills, behaviors and techniques in three areas: Effective Leadership, Negotiations, and Strategic Planning. In each one of these three areas, students will complete a series of readings and activities and simulations. The goal is to enhance student skills in these three areas, and to empower them with tactics and techniques to enhance their ability to achieve outcomes for their current and future employing organizations.

Application Process

Admission to the program is based on an assessment of the applicant’s potential to succeed in graduate study. Applicants are evaluated based on their demonstrated aptitude for graduate study, experience, and academic achievement. Learn more about our admissions process. 

Cost and Financing

Visit our Cost and Financial Aid page for information about tuition, fees, and scholarships for this certificate program.


For more information about the Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management, please submit our online Information Request Form and a member of our team will contact you.