Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management

heinen's windowThe nonprofit sector is the fastest growing employment sector in today's economy. Nonprofit organizations face new challenges: government funding cutbacks, growing numbers of clients, and the expanding need to acquire and manage financial resources. Nonprofit managers must find ways to help their organizations meet these challenges. They must deal effectively with boards, staff, volunteers, clients, funders, and members of the public. Yet few opportunities for specialized training in this multi-faceted role have been available in Northeast Ohio, despite its rich and varied nonprofit community.

Enrolling in the Nonprofit Management Graduate Certificate Program will provide you with learning designed to empower nonprofit administrators with the skills necessary to succeed. It is aimed at executive directors and other managers, as well as those with business or government management experience who are seeking a bridge to the nonprofit sector.

Admission Information

Degree-seeking graduate students who hold regular admission status may be admitted to a certificate program. Alternatively, the applicant must meet the graduate certificate admission requirements detailed in the Admissions section of the Graduate Catalog and listed below. With program permission, non-degree graduate students may take the courses noted below, but non-degree graduate students cannot earn a university graduate certificate.

Nonprofit Management Certificate Admission Requirements:

  • Submission of application for certificate admission and application fee.
  • Official transcripts confirming completion of baccalaureate degree, completed master’s degree, or completed JD degree.
  • Students must meet one of the following admission criteria:
  1. For bachelor's degrees earned within the past six years, the applicant must have a minimum cumulative GPA for the bachelor’s degree of 2.75 (4 point scale),
  2. OR if the bachelor's degree is more than six years old, the applicant must have a minimum 3.00 cumulative GPA,
  3. OR a minimum GRE score of the 50th percentile,
  4. OR completion of 12 graduate level credits at CSU with a minimum "B" in each course,
  5. OR completion of regionally accredited U.S. masters or Juris Doctorate degree.
  6. Submission of resume.

Submit application materials to the Graduate Admissions Office:
2121 Euclid Ave
Attn: Application Processing Center
Cleveland, OH 44115

To facilitate the admission process, please use the online application system.

Course Requirements

The certificate program includes four courses (two required and two electives).

Required Courses:

  • UST 550: Fundamentals of Nonprofit Administration and Leadership (Required)
  • UST 656: Advanced Topics in Nonprofit Management (Required)


Two electives may be chosen from the following list. Other appropriate courses may be selected with approval from the student’s advisor.

  • UST 510 Proposal Writing and Program Development (4 credits)
  • UST 630 Public Human Resources Management (3 credits)
  • UST 650 Financial Administration and Control of Nonprofit Organizations (4 credits)
  • UST 651 Fundraising and External Relations for Nonprofit Organizations (4 credits)

The required courses should be taken first. The time for completion of the certificate will range from 1 to 2 years, depending on whether students take one or two courses per semester and whether students attend classes during the summer session.

Contact Information

For more information please contact:
Public Affairs Student Services Center
Telephone: (216) 687-3884 / E-mail: