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Center for Continuing Education and Conference Services


Nonprofit Management Certificate Program

Maintaining a well trained and competent staff throughout all components of a nonprofit organization is critical, but where does an organization go to find training opportunities to insure a well trained and competent staff?

There are more than 2,000 nonprofit organizations in Mobile and Baldwin Counties in Alabama alone. Most of these organizations are in competition for the same sources of funding and are not well positioned or attractive enough to be seriously considered for funding because they have a weak organizational structure. Many nonprofit managers and boards do not understand why they are not receiving the financial resources needed to run their organizations and find themselves in the management position without adequate training and skills to run their programs efficiently and effectively.

The Nonprofit Management Certificate Program is designed for anyone in the non-profit field who has recently assumed management responsibilities, is working in a non-profit organization, serving on a board of directors, or involved in founding a non-profit organization. The program is designed to help existing non-profit leaders hone their skills and introduce new leaders to the skills critical to guiding their non-profit to effectively fulfilling its mission.

The seven-course curriculum spans 32 weeks giving you an intensive training in non-profit management. Upon completion of the seven courses, you will receive a Level I non-credit certificate in Non-Profit Management. Those wishing to explore rounding out their knowledge of non-profit operations may wish to enroll in the Grantwriting Workshop and will receive a Level II certificate upon completion.  Registration for the Nonprofit Management Certificate requires a $25 nonrefundable application fee and must accompany your registration form. There is no additional charge for the Level II Certificate.

Level I Certificate:
To earn a Level I certificate, students must complete the following courses:
  • Organizational Development (BU386) -

    Establishing a healthy nonprofit organization can be intimidating at the least, and at the most unsuccessful if not properly planned. This course is a continuation of the foundation material included in the non-credit USA Nonprofit Management Certificate Program. In the course of four sessions, you will learn how to take the idea of your nonprofit from concept to IRS certification, properly define your mission and vision statements, plan successfully for the future, and effectively develop the necessary policies and procedures to manage day-to-day operations. (4 sessions, offered fall term)

  • Strategic Organizational Management (BU497) -

    Strategically managing a non-profit organization is an on-going process that includes implementing and assessing goals. However, non-profits, like their for-profit counterparts, must also continuously reassess their strategies to determine if they are successful or should be altered to address a new technology, competition, a new economic environment, or new social, financial or political environments. This course will teach you how to successfully use the following tools to strategically manage your non-profit for long-term sustainability and success. (4 sessions, offered fall term)

  • Boards and Governance (BU490) -

    Learn to boost or gain leadership roles for a non-profit organization. This class is for prospective candidates wanting to learn how to develop a strong working board of directors for a non-profit organization and how to effectively utilize the board to long-term success. You will learn the responsibilities of board members, the skills and characteristics needed for boards, procedures and policies to administer the work of the board, and how to organize and conduct meetings. This course will involve lecture, small group discussions, and case studies. There is not a textbook for this course; however, students will receive handouts and information pertaining to this four-week session. (4 sessions, offered winter term)

  • Effective Financial Management in Nonprofit Organizations (BU398) -

    Non-profits must maintain a financially stable organization and live within their means. This is one of management's and the Board's key responsibilities. Expand your knowledge of budgeting and maintaining a non-profit organization financially as a manager or board member for a non-profit organization. This course will guide you through the objectives of how to generate revenue to support operations and administration, develop accounting skills in order to work closely with the accountant, and to understand the financial aspects of the non-profit organization. This is the next course in the series for the Non-Profit Management Certification Program. There is no textbook needed for this 4-week course. Students will receive handouts and information regarding printed resources for non-profit organization development. (4 sessions, offered winter term)

  • Resource Development (BU391) -

    A strong, effective fundraising program begins with a well developed fundraising plan and a written case for support. This class will teach the basics for developing your plan and case statement through the key components of forming effective annual campaigns, choosing special events that will be the most beneficial for their organization, and building planned giving programs. Discover ways to attract donors that match your nonprofit and how to strengthen your relationship with them for long-term giving. You will receive handouts and information regarding printed resources for non-profit organization development. (8 sessions, offered spring term)

  • Marketing for Nonprofits (BU394) -

    The effective marketing of a nonprofit involves creating and sustaining the desired image and message of your nonprofit. To accomplish this you must gain an understanding of the eight basic steps of marketing before you develop and implement your marketing plan. Discover the differences between marketing and public relations and their role in creating awareness of your nonprofit, as well as the impact new media tools can play in achieving this awareness. With the existence of so many nonprofits today, marketing your nonprofit to stand out in the crowd has never been more critical. (4 sessions, offered summer term)

  • Evaluating Nonprofit Organizations for Quality and Effectiveness (BU393) -

    Program evaluation is an essential task for non-profit organizations. Outcome evaluation is increasingly required by nonprofit funders as verification that the nonprofits are effectively serving their clients. More importantly, evaluation reports are one of the best tools for a nonprofit organization to evaluate the strength of management. This course provides you with an overview of the purpose of program evaluation and the basic steps in performing it, as well as the importance of program and organization evaluation in terms of meeting your organization's objectives and client's needs. (4 sessions, offered summer term)
Level II Certificate:
Students wishing to earn a Level II Certificate must complete the requirements of the Level I Certificate above with the additional course in grant writing,
  • Grant Writing: The Step-by-Step Process (BU388) –

    If you work or volunteer in the nonprofit sector, chances are your funding sources could be diminishing, thereby forcing you to pursue other funding sources. With this course you gain an understanding of the process of grant funding and the steps necessary to increasing your chances of award. Through the course of this eight-week class you will learn key concepts of the grant proposal process including pre-proposal work, planning and program development, proposal writing and development, and grant management; then apply them in between class sessions to your particular organization. The final session will detail how to efficiently manage your funding once you have successfully been awarded the grant. (8 sessions, offered fall and spring terms only)
NOTE: Students can enroll in any of the courses offered without being in the certification program. However, certificates will only be granted to those who have enrolled in the program. Courses are priced individually, see current catalog for registration fees.
The University of South Alabama reserves the right to cancel any course for which there is not sufficient enrollment. Should a course be canceled after you enroll, you may transfer to another class or receive a full refund. Decisions to cancel a course, based on enrollment, are made three business days prior to the course start date, see course description for specific cancellation details. Failure to attend classes does not constitute withdrawal. Decisions to cancel your registration can be made by calling, faxing or emailing our department and must be received by 5 p.m. at least three business days prior to the start of your class. Refund requests received after this will not be granted.
Attendance Policy:
Students MUST attend 80% of all class meetings within a course unless prior arrangements are made with the instructor. (Maximum of 1 excused absence per course.)
Download Program Brochure
Mailing Address:
Attn: Nonprofit Management Certificate
1504 Springhill Avenue, Suite 2515
Mobile, AL  36604
Tel: (251)405-9928 / Fax: (251)405-9931

Email: sastephens@usouthal.edu


University of South Alabama - Mobile Alabama 36688-0002 / 1 (251) 431-6411
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Date last changed: August 30, 2011 3:54 PM

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