School of Public Affairs

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"My generation of third sector leaders had no formal graduate nonprofit management education available. We learned by trial and error, with many bumps along the way. Today's nonprofit executives can take advantage of the School of Public Affairs' superior quality curriculum, focusing on the theoretical and practical applications. With this education the nonprofit leaders of today and tomorrow will be equipped to make an even greater impact in our communities."

Cathy Robbins
El Pomar Foundation

Thriving nonprofit organizations are an essential component of community well-being. The Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management program provides the knowledge and skills to lead and manage nonprofits effectively. Aspiring nonprofit leaders will gain fundamental skills; those already in the field will expand their skills; and nonprofit board members will gain knowledge to enhance their capacity to govern.

Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management Brochure

A Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Management consists of four required classes. For descriptions of courses see UCCS Academic Catalog

Required courses include:
PAD 5110 - Seminar on Nonprofit Management
PAD 5140 - Nonprofit Financial Management
PAD 5160 - Nonprofit Boards and Executive Leadership

Plus one of the following courses:

PAD 5130 - Collaboration Across Sectors
PAD 5150 - Understanding and Achieving Funding Diversity

PAD 5170 - Strategic Management for Nonprofit and Public Managers
PAD 5180 - Social Entrepreneurship
PAD 5220 - Human Resource Management in Public Service Organizations
PAD 5260 - Managing in a Multicultural Society
PAD 5350 - Program Evaluation
PAD 5460 - Political Advocacy
PAD 6115 - Grant Writing

Courses may be offered in the classroom or online. Students are not required to apply to a degree program to take these courses but must have a bachelor's degree from an accredited university. Students must earn grades of B- or better in each course counted toward a certificate.

Current Master of Public Administration (MPA) and Master of Criminal Justice (MCJ) students may take these courses and earn the certificate in addition to the MPA or MCJ as part of their degree plan. Students who complete the certificate only may apply these courses to the MPA or MCJ degree if admitted. However, only courses taken within six years prior to the semester of graduation may be applied to the degree.

To enroll in the certificate program, all students must:
• submit a one-page certificate application and official transcripts to the School of Public Affairs

Students not currently admitted to the MPA or MCJ degree program must also
• submit a brief application and a $25 processing fee to the UCCS admissions office to be admitted as a nondegree student 
• submit official transcripts to the School of Public Affairs

Gainful Employment Disclosures:
The U.S. Department of Education requires us to provide the following information about each of our certificates.

Program Costs:
Program costs vary depending on each student's particular situation. For the 2014-2015 year, Colorado residents who complete all coursework on campus pay around $7,000 for their certificate, while on-campus nonresident students pay around $11,000. Distance and/or local students who complete all degree requirements online will pay around $7,665.
Students can estimate specific tuition costs by using the tuition calculator on the Student Financial Services website.

Related Occupations:
Related occupations for each certificate are listed below. Click the links below to view occupational profiles.

Chief Executives
Chief Sustainability Officers
General and Operations Managers


On-Time Completion & Median Loan Debt:

As this is a newly-approved program, the on-time completion rates and median student loan debt of program graduates are not yet available.