Post-baccalaureate Certificate in Leadership of Nonprofit Organizations

Business and Economics Department

Degrees offered



Main Campus


Notre Dame of Maryland University offers the Post-baccalaureate Certificate in Leadership of Nonprofit Organizations to those students who desire further professional qualifications but are not seeking a full Master's program, or who already have earned a graduate degree. This program enables participants to develop the leadership skills necessary in today's nonprofit sector and is also suitable for committed nonprofit board members who wish to enhance their understanding of the nonprofit sector.

Courses taken for the Certificate may be applied to the Master of Arts in Nonprofit Management. For the Certificate Program, no graduate credits may be transferred from other accredited institutions.

Curriculum (18 Credits)

This 18-credit Certificate requires students to complete one required course and choose five courses from a list of electives.

Required Course

          NPM-531 Managing Financial Resources in Nonprofits (3)


          Five courses selected from:

          NPM-501 Strategic Planning in the Nonprofit Sector (3)
          NPM-502 Introduction to Nonprofit Management (3)

          NPM-510 Management and Leadership in Nonprofits (3)
          NPM-520 Board Development and Human Resource Management in Nonprofits (3)
          NPM-545 Fundraising and Grant Writing (3)
          NPM-551 Government–Nonprofit Relationships (3)
          NPM-560 Ethical Issues in Nonprofit Management (3)
          NPM-570 Nonprofit Marketing (3)
          NPM-580 Program Evaluation Methods (3)


NPM-501 Strategic Planning in the Nonprofit Sector

Explores strategic and operational planning in the nonprofit sector, its similarities to and differences from the for profit and public sectors. Based on this examination of the sector environment, learners engage in strategic planning for the specific nonprofit program of their choice. Corequisites: NPM-510, NPM-531. [ 3 credits ]

NPM-502 Introduction to Nonprofit Management

This course is designed to provide current and future nonprofit managers and leaders with the competencies needed to run effective nonprofit organizations, which include: Legal and Regulatory Contexts; Leadership and Governance; Human Resource Management and Volunteerism; Fundraising; Planning and Evaluation; Information Management; Advocacy, Public Policy, and Social Change; Communications, Marketing, and Public Relations; Financial Management and Social Entrepreneurship. Course projects and discussions expand students' management skills, analytical tools, and knowledge of nonprofit management core competencies. Students take the perspectives of nonprofit managers, volunteers, board members, policy makers, donors, and clients and complete a consulting project for a nonprofit organization. [3 credits ] NOTE: take within first 15 credits of the program, Co-requisite NPM-545.

NPM-510 Leadership and Organizational Development in Nonprofits

Compares and evaluates leadership and organization development theories to the nonprofit sector. Learners expand their organizational development skills through exploring the differing needs and cultural perspectives of staff, volunteers, board members, donors and consumers. Compares and contrasts leadership in the for-profit and nonprofit sectors. Learners focus on assessing their leadership strengths and weaknesses through textural readings, assessment tools and case studies. [ 3 credits ]

NPM-520 Board Development and Human Resource Management in Nonprofits

Examines the unique human resources challenges in nonprofits including strategic workforce planning, hiring,training, personnel evaluation and compensation. Recruiting, developing and managing a volunteer Board of Directors is reviewed along with broader concepts of volunteer management. Learners select and apply these concepts to a portfolio of practical, useful Human Resource applications. [ 3 credits ]

NPM-531 Managing Financial Resources in Nonprofits

Introduces the underlying concepts, language and reporting methods of accounting and financial analysis. Emphasizes understanding and using accounting and financial statements, rather than producing them. Topics include budgeting, working with accountants and financial analysts to achieve organizational goals, and managing financial resources are explored through practical problem sets. [ 3 credits ]

NPM-545 Fundraising and Grant Writing

Explores the various methods that nonprofits use to raise funds to support the organization's operations and programs. Addresses basic grant acquisition methodologies including conducting grant research, making contacts, and creating standard and comprehensive case statements. Learners complete a fundraising plan or write a grant for a nonprofit organization. [ 3 credits ]

NPM-551 Government-Nonprofit Relationships

Explores the relationship between the public sector includinghow each sector influences the other. The inquiry reviews the development and implementation of public policy and how nonprofits influence government. Learners track a specific issue of their choice. [ 3 credits ]

NPM-560 Nonprofit Law and Ethics

Examines the legal issues related to the creation and management of nonprofits. Analyzes a range of ethical issues and dilemmas inherent in the nonprofit arena. Learners explore these issues through a series of practical applications. [ 3 credits ]

NPM-570 Nonprofit Marketing

Focuses on the complementary aspects of marketing and communications for a non-profit organization. Topics include segmentation, branding, and membership recruitment. This course also explores the roles of public relations, advertising and social media, as well as the process of preparing persuasive communication for target markets. Learners prepare a case statement, communications and social media strategy for an organization or program. [ 3 credits ]

NPM-580 Program Evaluation Methods

Examines performance measurement and outcomes assessment for nonprofit organizations. Learners are also introduced to the use basic descriptive statistics to identify, measure and present information, particularly to their organizations' Boards and to outside stakeholders. Learners develop an evaluation design for the program of their choice. [ 3 credits ]