The Master of Business Administration (MBA for short) is the most popular degree track among today's graduate students. During the 2013-14 academic year alone, roughly 190,000 master's degrees in business were conferred to students throughout the U.S. The MBA is designed to prepare students for managerial roles in today's business sector. Students in this degree pathway will sharpen their skills and knowledge of accounting and finance, marketing, human resources, supply chain management, office administration and other key areas of business leadership. A large number of colleges and universities allow MBA students to focus their studies on niche areas of business administration; these concentrated pathways are called 'specializations'.
The field of 'nonprofit management' is a popular specialization choice among MBA students who plan to lead charities, foundations, and other organizations that strive to address social causes without generating profits or dividends for shareholders. MBA in nonprofit management degree programs cover the ethical and legal guidelines for these organizations, as well as various strategies for nonprofit success. Additional courses will build skills and knowledge in finance, HR, logistics, and other core business subjects. MBA programs often culminate in a comprehensive capstone project; an onsite internship may be required, as well. Many of today's students are choosing to earn their MBA in nonprofit management online, rather than in a classroom. Web-based students follow the same rigorous curricula as their brick-and-mortar counterparts, leading to a comparable number of post-graduation job opportunities. The asynchronous (or self-paced) format of most online MBA in nonprofit management programs is also ideal for students with other commitments that may interfere with campus-based education, such as part-time employment or family obligations.
Learn more about what you can do with an online MBA in nonprofit management and what kind of career opportunities you can look forward to with this comprehensive guide.
- WHY WOULD AN MBA WORK AT A NONPROFIT?
MBAs can contribute greatly to the operations of many nonprofit organizations. There are many scholarships, grants, and fellowship programs that incentivize MBA graduates to pursue careers with nonprofits.
- WHAT CAN YOU DO WITH A MASTER'S IN NONPROFIT MANAGEMENT?
Graduates with a master's in nonprofit management can pursue careers as logisticians, fundraisers, management analysts, and operations research analysts. Read more here..
- IS A MASTER'S IN NONPROFIT MANAGEMENT WORTH IT?
A master's in nonprofit management is worth it for those who want to bring much-needed business acumen to the nonprofit sector. Read more here..
- WHAT IS A MASTER'S IN NONPROFIT MANAGEMENT?
A master's in nonprofit management is an graduate degree that prepares students to effectively manage a nonprofit organization. Nonprofit management may also be offered as a specialization in an MBA program.
- HOW MUCH DOES AN ONLINE MBA COST?
Most online MBA programs cost between $35,000 and $50,000. Program costs can vary between public and private schools and based on the size of a school's student body. Read more here..
Choosing a Program
WILL AN ONLINE MBA IN NONPROFIT MANAGEMENT PROGRAM PROVIDE ME WITH THE SKILLS I NEED TO ADVANCE MY CAREER?
An MBA in nonprofit management will prepare students for the unique challenges of running and leading a not-for-profit organization, as well as the expected demands of any business management career. Areas of focus include brand-building and fundraising methods, capacity-building, cross-sector collaboration, and personnel development. Along the way, students will bolster their skills in communication, problem-solving, resource management, and leadership. Capstone projects and internships further boost their career standing by exposing them to the realities of real-world nonprofit operations.
WILL AN ONLINE MBA IN NONPROFIT MANAGEMENT PROGRAM WORK WITH MY SCHEDULE?
MBA online programs provide a flexible, user-friendly alternative to traditional postsecondary education. Students can download course lectures and readings, participate in virtual discussions with other students, submit written assignments, take exams and communicate with their professors ― all from the comfort of their home computer. Current technology also enables them to study on the go using a laptop, tablet, smartphone and other portable devices with Wi-Fi capabilities. For added convenience, online supply chain management MBA students can usually coordinate internship opportunities at training locations that are reasonably close to their current residence.
WHAT JOBS CAN I GET WITH MY MBA IN NONPROFIT MANAGEMENT?
Most students who leave school with an online MBA in nonprofit management will be qualified to lead existing organizations, or develop and launch new ones. Many find their niche in specific areas of management and administration, such as accounting, sales and marketing, human resources, or risk analysis. Because the MBA is considered a terminal degree for business professionals, graduates will typically be considered for top-level positions as soon as they collect their diplomas.
WHAT ARE THE BEST ONLINE MBA IN NONPROFIT MANAGEMENT PROGRAMS?
Choosing a program is an incredibly personal decision, and only you can properly evaluate whether a target school's strengths match your educational needs. The following ranked list of schools should serve as a helpful starting point in your search for the best online MBA in nonprofit management programs in the United States. Our ranking is based on the courses schools offer, available specializations, student outcomes, career support services, and other criteria used to determine academic excellence. If you are considering an online MBA in nonprofit management, be sure to contact admissions specialists at different colleges and universities to learn more their about specific requirements and offerings.
Accredited MBA in Nonprofit Management Degrees
Johnson & Wales University
|Providence, RI||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 57%||
Johnson & Wales University educates 13,000 undergraduate and graduate students. With a main campus in Providence, Rhode Island, JWU also offers courses in Miami, Denver, Charlotte, and online. The private, nonprofit university offers a flexible online MBA for students with busy schedules.
The MBA consists of 36-42 credits. Courses last eight weeks, and distance learners can complete the program in two years. The curriculum focuses on concepts such as the global economy, finance, leadership, and marketing. In addition, students may take three credits of elective courses. JWU offers several graduate courses in nonprofit management, such as resource development for nonprofits and strategic planning and leadership in nonprofit organizations.
Students must complete a three-credit capstone course before graduation: business policy and strategy. This course examines real-world examples of companies and their business challenges. Learners examine these issues and develop solutions based on the strategies and concepts they learned throughout the program.
Distance learners receive many of the same benefits as on-campus students. They can take advantage of academic support, tutoring, and career services.
Applicants with at least a 2.85 undergraduate GPA do not need to submit GMAT or GRE scores. Prospective students at least 24 years old with a minimum 2.41 GPA and significant professional success may apply as well. Candidates must submit two recommendations and a statement of purpose.
Touro University Worldwide
|Los Alamitos, CA||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 60%||
Touro University Worldwide is part of the Touro College and University System. It is a Jewish-affiliated, nonprofit institution with campuses in California, New York, and Illinois. The Touro system enrolls over 19,000 students. With accreditation from the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, TUW conducts all of its degrees and programs through distance learning.
The university offers an online MBA with several concentrations, including one in nonprofit management. The program offers six start dates per year. Students who take two courses for six consecutive terms can graduate in one year. Students may transfer up to nine graduate-level credits with at least a B- grade, which expedites graduation.
Distance learners study through an asynchronous format, meaning they do not need to log on at specific times, but they must meet assignment deadlines. In addition to 27 core credits, students take nine concentration credits. The nonprofit management track requires courses in foundations in nonprofit management, financial decision-making for nonprofits, and marketing and revenue generation for nonprofits. Distance learners also complete a capstone course.
Applicants must submit transcripts with a minimum 2.5 GPA in undergraduate coursework. The university does not require applicants to take the GRE or GMAT. Applicants with a military service background may apply for the Military Achievement Scholarship, which covers up to 40% of a student's tuition.
Oklahoma State University
|Stillwater, OK||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 62%||
Oklahoma State University began instructing 45 students in 1891 as an agricultural and mechanical college in Stillwater. Today, the public university instructs over 26,000 students and holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.
The university offers several online degrees. OSU established a 42-credit part-time online MBA in 1992. Students may also pursue a graduate certificate in nonprofit management, which covers topics like fundraising and sustainable enterprise for nonprofit organizations. Courses run asynchronously, so students work on their own time. Program length varies, but distance learners typically graduate in 3.5 years.
Distance learners work with an academic adviser to plan their schedules. They may also meet with a career coordinator, who helps students with resumes, interview skills, and job searches.
OSU encourages graduate business students to join the MBA Student Association, which allows learners to participate in professional, social, and philanthropic projects in their communities. Distance learners can also participate in special in-person programs, like study abroad trips and networking events.
Applicants submit GRE or GMAT scores and undergraduate transcripts with a minimum 3.0 GPA. OSU prefers candidates with professional work experience, although the school does not require it. Prospective students also submit a statement of purpose and two recommendation letters. Candidates may apply for several different scholarships.
|Beverly, MA||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 75%||
Based in the suburbs of Boston, Endicott College originally enrolled 20 students when it opened in 1941. Today, over 5,000 undergraduate and graduate students attend the regionally accredited private school on campus and online.
Endicott's Van Loan School offers many business degrees, including the online MBA with an emphasis in nonprofit management. The online program differs from the traditional on-campus program by letting working professionals study part time. The degree consists of 42 credits. Students may finish the degree in 18 months, although some learners take longer to graduate. Instructors teach courses in an asynchronous format.
Distance learners take 30 credits of core coursework, studying foundational concepts like managerial economics in addition to business policies and strategies. The nonprofit concentration requires an additional 12 credits, with courses like marketing and fundraising for nonprofits and providing direction for nonprofits.
Online students get the same access as on-campus students to several academic support centers, like the advising services center, tutoring center, and writing center. They may also take advantage of personal advising sessions and networking opportunities.
Prospective students do not need to meet a minimum undergraduate GPA to apply, nor do they need to submit GMAT or GRE scores. Candidates should submit one letter of recommendation from an academic source and one from a professional source. They must also write an essay outlining career goals.
Concordia University - Wisconsin
|Mequon, WI||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 53%||
Established in 1881 with 13 students, Concordia University - Wisconsin now hosts about 8,000 students, including nearly 2,000 online students. Concordia's MBA program is the largest in Wisconsin and holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission. Students can enroll in the MBA online, which offers a concentration in nonprofit management.
MBA students take 13 courses worth 39 credits. In addition to eight core courses, distance learners take five courses within their specialization. Students with professional experience may qualify for a waiver from the MBA's foundational course. The program culminates with a capstone project focusing on strategic management. Courses last eight weeks, and students can graduate within two years. Additionally, students receive training for industry certification exams.
Distance learning students can take advantage of several optional in-person opportunities. For instance, they may earn credit through internships or participate in one-week study abroad trips to China or Austria.
To apply, candidates need a minimum 3.0 GPA from undergraduate coursework. They must submit a personal statement, two recommendation letters, and a resume. Incoming students can transfer up to six credits. CUW also provides several scholarship opportunities for students.
Olivet Nazarene University
|Bourbonnais, IL||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 66%||
Located in Bourbonnais, Illinois, Olivet Nazarene University opened in 1907 as a Christian institution. Although Olivet Nazarene began as a grammar school, the university now enrolls nearly 5,000 undergraduate and graduate students in 120 areas of study. The private school offers several online programs for students and holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission.
ONU's 36-credit online MBA allows students to choose between 18-month and 24-month tracks. The core curriculum covers topics in business and finance. Learners also study emotional and cultural intelligence, gaining soft skills to supplement business strategy and managerial finance skills.
Distance learners can choose to earn a nonprofit management certificate. The three courses within this specialization include corporate communications and media strategy, nonprofit operations, and nonprofit fundraising and financial reporting. Within the nonprofit management certificate, student teams create campaigns for nonprofit companies and present them through student-created websites.
As a part of the program's global immersion course, students can participate in an optional international trip for 8-10 days with their classmates. During the trip, learners engage in foreign business environments. Students may apply for funding to cover trip expenses.
Applicants must submit a professional resume and transcripts from previous college coursework. Candidates need an undergraduate degree with a minimum 2.5 GPA. They do not need to take the GRE or GMAT.
National Louis University
|Chicago, IL||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 50%||
Chicago-based National Louis University operates on seven campuses in Illinois and Florida. Over 8,000 students attend the university, which holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission. About 85% of students attend the private university part time.
The online MBA program at NLU consists of 39 credits, and students may specialize in nonprofit management. Many distance learners finish within two years. Incoming students with at least a B in previous graduate coursework may transfer credits, reducing the time to graduation. Students can pursue the degree entirely online or through a hybrid format. Students can also supplement graduate degrees with business certificates.
Core courses examine concepts like managerial economics, financial markets, and technology and leadership. After learners complete nine credits of nonprofit management coursework, they take a strategic management capstone course. The capstone allows students to practice making analytical business decisions based on knowledge and skills learned in previous classes. Graduates of the nonprofit management MBA pursue careers as campaign managers, community organizers, and development directors, among other managerial positions at nonprofits.
Applicants submit transcripts and a written statement about their professional and academic goals. If applicants did not earn at least a 3.0 GPA in their undergraduate coursework, they must take the Official Criterion Online Writing Assessment. Prospective students must also submit two letters of recommendation. Students with military experience qualify for a 15-25% tuition discount.
Concordia University - Chicago
|River Forest, IL||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 48%||
Concordia University began as a teachers college in the mid-1800s. It later became part of the Concordia University System, a group of institutions affiliated with the Lutheran church. Today, CUC, which holds accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission, enrolls over 3,000 graduate students on campus and online.
The online MBA program at Concordia allows students to choose between two-year and one-year options. The 36-credit curriculum focuses on instructing business concepts through four pillars: ethics and social responsibility, critical thinking, communications, and global interconnectedness and inclusiveness. Courses last eight weeks and run asynchronously. Each course ends with a final project. At the end of the program, students compile all of these projects into a digital business portfolio.
Distance learners may specialize in nonprofit management. Courses cover topics such as financial management, board governance, volunteer supervision, and fund development. Additionally, students may pursue a separate certificate through an extra 12 credits of coursework. Certificates include digital marketing, entrepreneurship, and finance.
When learners begin the program, they must take a comprehensive exam that tests their knowledge of concepts like finance, economics, and accounting. Exam scores determine whether students must take foundational courses at the start of the curriculum.
Prospective students do not need to take the GRE or GMAT, but they need at least a 2.85 GPA in undergraduate coursework. Applicants submit transcripts, two recommendation letters, a professional resume, and a short essay describing their academic objectives.
|Saint Bonifacius, MN||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 67%||
A private, Christian institution based in Minnesota, Crown College enrolls about 1,300 students each year. The school's original purpose involved training and educating missionaries, and Crown still offers a biblically based education. However, the university offers several distance learning degrees in business and the liberal arts, as well.
Crown's online MBA consists of 42 credits, and distance learners typically take 1.5-2 years to finish the program. Students enroll in one course at a time. Courses, which operate through an asynchronous format, last 7-14 weeks. Incoming students may transfer with at least a B in previous graduate coursework. Learners must take at least 24 credits at Crown.
Core coursework combines the school's biblical principles with business topics in courses such as theoretical and spiritual foundations of leadership. The strategic management course functions as a capstone, integrating and summarizing what students learned throughout the MBA. Additionally, students must design and present an integrated case analysis, which counts as the final project.
Distance learners must choose a 15-credit concentration, such as nonprofit management. Nonprofit management courses cover nonprofit law, marketing, leadership, fundraising, philanthropy, and financial management.
To apply to this MBA in nonprofit management online program, candidates must submit undergraduate transcripts with at least a 3.0 GPA. Military veterans may apply for full-tuition scholarships.
Salve Regina University
|Newport, RI||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 71%||
Salve Regina University, a Catholic school with accreditation from the Higher Learning Commission, enrolls nearly 2,700 students each year. Founded in 1947 by the Sisters of Mercy, Salve Regina operates from its campus in Newport, Rhode Island. The school also offers several online degrees.
The online MBA allows students to choose from several concentrations, including nonprofit management. The curriculum consists of 36 credits. In addition to foundational courses, like business law and managerial accounting, distance learners take courses such as creative problem-solving and social justice and business ethics.
Students with a nonprofit management emphasis study concepts like grant writing and fundraising campaigns. Online students take a strategic management and business policy course, which counts as the capstone, in their last term. In the capstone, learners adopt the role of a business leader. They must make decisions using concepts learned in previous coursework, like marketing, disaster planning, and public relations.
To apply, candidates submit official transcripts, two recommendation letters, a personal statement, and a resume. Salve Regina University developed an agreement with the American Institute for Chartered Property Casualty Underwriters. This partnership allows new students to transfer up to 12 graduate-level credits.
Piedmont International University
|High Point, NC||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 25%||
Private Christian universities based in North Carolina, John Wesley University and Piedmont International University merged in 2018. Now known as Piedmont International University, the accredited school offers degrees online and on its Winston-Salem campus.
Students who enroll in Piedmont's 36-credit MBA in nonprofit management online learn about business management concepts with a Christian-centered curriculum. Incoming students can transfer nine credits of graduate-level coursework with a B grade or better. Program completion time varies, although distance learners must finish the program within six years.
Students take 27 credits of core courses, including contemporary economic issues and leadership and human behaviors. Distance learners must also complete nine specialization credits. The nonprofit management concentration includes courses like capital/endowment campaigns, board leadership and management, and social entrepreneurship.
Prospective students must submit transcripts with a recommended minimum 3.0 GPA. The school also requires two recommendation letters, a personal statement, and a resume. In some cases, admissions counselors may ask applicants to submit GRE and GMAT scores. However, most candidates do not need to take these entrance exams.
PIU grants several graduate student scholarships for academic achievement and ministry involvement. Military veterans and service members qualify for the Military Appreciation Scholarship, which covers some distance learning tuition costs.
|Knoxville, TN||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 63%||
Founded as a Bible school in 1893, Johnson University instructs students in the liberal arts and business through a Christian perspective. The school operates three campuses: a main campus in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee, a campus in Florida, and an online campus. The regionally accredited university enrolls about 1,300 students on its three campuses, including over 300 distance learners.
The online MBA at JUTN features an asynchronous format, allowing students to log on at their convenience. The curriculum includes 36 credits, with courses such as advanced corporate finance and managerial economics. The three-credit capstone project requires students to apply strategic business knowledge and skills. JUTN instructors teach MBA courses from the viewpoint of Christian ethics and values.
The nonprofit management specialization consists of four courses: fundraising strategies, resource development, nonprofit law, and project design management. Online courses last 7-8 weeks. Although distance learners study asynchronously, they must engage in discussion forums and complete weekly assignments. Online students work with an academic adviser, and they can access the academic support center and career counseling services.
Applicants submit transcripts and three recommendation letters from a church leader or minister, employer, and educator. Applicants also write an admissions essay outlining their academic and professional goals in addition to their experience with church membership and ministry. JUTN does not require applicants to meet a minimum undergraduate GPA.
North Park University
|Chicago, IL||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 59%||
Swedish immigrants established North Park University in 1891. The school began in the basement of a church in Minneapolis before moving to Chicago, where it remains today. A private, regionally accredited university, North Park University currently hosts about 3,200 learners.
Students can pursue an MBA in nonprofit management online. MBA coursework covers concepts like organizational behavior and ethics, marketing analysis and consumer behavior, and multisector convergence and social responsibility. Distance learners typically take 2-2.5 years to complete the 36-credit curriculum. In the capstone course, students use a computer-based management simulation to test their business skills. They also work in student teams to create final projects.
Rather than a concentration, distance learners can pursue certification. The nonprofit management certification requires 10 credits of coursework. Classes cover topics like marketing analysis and consumer behavior for nonprofit organizations. Students also learn about fundraising, financial management, and measuring outcomes and assessments.
Online students can schedule virtual one-on-one tutoring sessions with trained student tutors. Distance learners may also take advantage of academic advising, the writing center, and the Office of Career Development and Internships.
To apply, prospective students must submit transcripts. Applicants with a GPA below 3.0 must take the GRE or GMAT. Candidates also submit two recommendation letters and a short essay about their perspective on promoting ethics within organizations.
|New Castle, DE||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 26%||
Based in New Castle, Delaware, Wilmington University enrolls over 20,000 students in its undergraduate and graduate programs. The private university began with a class of just under 200 students in 1968 and now educates students at several locations in the eastern United States. Nearly half of Wilmington's students enroll online.
Wilmington's online MBA allows students to graduate in one year. The curriculum consists of 36 credits and courses last seven weeks. Instructors may assign asynchronous and synchronous course components, and they generally expect students to participate in online class forums and virtual chats.
Seven core courses teach foundational and advanced business concepts, such as quantitative business analysis, managerial accounting, and organizational behavior and ethical leadership. The degree also offers a concentration in nonprofit management focused on issues such as fund development and fundraising in the human service environment. Distance learners may earn three credits for an internship. During students' last term, they take a capstone course in which they address problems related to business policy and strategy.
Wilmington also grants certain professional certifications for graduate-level coursework, such as certified public accountant, certified financial planner, and senior professional HR manager.
Applicants submit transcripts and need at least a C grade in undergraduate math, economics, accounting, and finance courses. Applicants do not need to submit GRE or GMAT scores.
Chaminade University of Honolulu
|Honolulu, HI||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 54%||
Chaminade University of Honolulu is the only Catholic higher education institution in Hawaii. Established in 1955, Chaminade prioritizes service learning. The school offers 23 undergraduate and six graduate programs to its more than 2,000 students.
Graduate students at Chaminade can pursue an MBA entirely online. Within this program, students complete 36 credits of coursework. The quickest pathway lets students graduate in 18 months, but the program allows distance learners to work at their own pace. Incoming students can transfer up to six credits of graduate-level coursework with a B grade or better.
Students without a business background must take business foundation courses. All learners must complete eight core courses, which include leading people in organizations, economic analysis for managers, and managerial marketing. Students pursuing the nonprofit concentration must take an additional four courses. This specialization explores social enterprise management, relations between nonprofit organizations and the government, and strategic issues in philanthropy.
Applicants need at least two years of work experience, computer literacy, and graduate-level writing and math skills. They must submit undergraduate transcripts with a minimum 3.0 GPA.
What else can I expect from an online MBA in Nonprofit Management program?
Every online master's in nonprofit management program is different, and no two schools offer the same curricula. However, many institutions offer graduate students the opportunity to specialize in a subfield of nonprofit management. The following are some of the most common concentrations offered through MBA in nonprofit management online programs.
CONCENTRATIONS OFFERED FOR AN ONLINE MBA IN NONPROFIT MANAGEMENT
|Concentration||Description||Careers this concentration prepares for|
|Public Policy||Students concentrating on public policy will learn the fundamentals of policymaking and analysis. Focusing on the financial and budgeting aspects of nonprofit management, this concentration is designed for those interested in public service or government careers. Coursework may address topics such as advocacy and legal issues affecting nonprofit groups.||Charity Director; Public Administration Consultant; Public Affairs Director|
|Environmental Policy||This concentration offers a multidisciplinary curriculum that draws equally from the fields of science and management. Students gain cutting-edge perspectives on ecological matters as they develop core competencies in resource management, public policy, and benefit-cost analysis. Some programs include courses on energy and sustainability policy, or environmental law.||Environmental Lawyer; Land Use Planner; Environmental Lobbyist|
|Philanthropy||Combining aspects of management, economics, and sociology, this concentration focuses on the role of public and private funding in nonprofit management. Topics covered in this curriculum may include grant writing, capital campaigns, and financial planning, with an emphasis on ethical and legal matters.||Grantmaker; Volunteer Program Administrator; Donor Relations Administrator|
CURRICULUM FOR AN ONLINE MBA IN NONPROFIT MANAGEMENT
Like degree concentrations, curricula can vary widely between online master's in nonprofit management programs. Most, however, offer some variations on the following core courses.
- Human resource management: Covering labor relations, team building, and fundamental topics in organizational theory, this course provides students with the practical knowledge required to effectively manage a team in or out of the nonprofit sector. Coursework teaches broadly applicable leadership skills that graduates will find useful in virtually any management position.
- Financial management: This course provides an overview of financial concepts integral to running a nonprofit organization. Students will learn to effectively allocate funds, measure risks and returns, and manage payrolls. Crucial for anyone earning a master's in nonprofit management online who is interested in philanthropy, this course often touches on fundraising and grant writing topics.
- Nonprofit ethics: Most nonprofit organizations adhere to a code of ethics, and this class describes how and why these codes are created. Case studies demonstrate the importance of accountability and transparency in nonprofit management — particularly in areas of fundraising, financial allocation, and conflicts of interest.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO GET AN ONLINE MBA IN NONPROFIT MANAGEMENT?
The best online MBAs in nonprofit management aren't always the longest programs. Designed with busy professionals in mind, some can be completed in as little as a year. On average, it takes around two years to finish a 36-credit master's in nonprofit management online, but program length can depend on several variables, including how courses are paced.
Offering relatively loose deadlines and maximum flexibility, individually paced, or asynchronous nonprofit management certificate online programs let students view lectures and complete assignments at their convenience. Without being required to log on at certain times, students can effectively manage educational, work, and family commitments. Cohort programs take a synchronous, group-based approach to learning. Students in a cohort course are expected to be present online at assigned times, and may be required to contribute to group discussions and projects. While these classes often take longer to complete, some students prefer them for their emphasis on teamwork and personal accountability.
CERTIFICATIONS AND LICENSES AN MBA IN NONPROFIT MANAGEMENT PREPARES FOR
Certified Nonprofit Professional: Ideal for anyone earning their MBA in nonprofit management online, this credential opens up a wealth of career and networking opportunities. Training is centered on ten core competencies most sought after by employers. While training can be completed online, applicants are required to complete a 300-hour internship in the field.
Certified Fundraising Executive: This certification is awarded to philanthropists and students of philanthropy who complete an examination and meet certain qualifications. Applicants must earn a series of points that are awarded through education, professional practice, and performance. Points can be earned by attending relevant conferences and programs, but may also be earned through college courses.
Accreditation for online MBA in Nonprofit Management degrees
Getting your master's in nonprofit management online from an accredited institution is crucial for success, both in and out of the classroom. Accreditation ensures that a school meets the proper standards of academic quality, as defined by agencies such as the Department of Education or Council for Higher Education Accreditation.
Schools can be regionally or nationally accredited, and it's important to understand the distinction between these designations. Regionally accredited schools are typically nonprofit, public institutions that have been evaluated by one of six accrediting agencies, while nationally accredited institutions tend to be for-profit vocational schools. Although both can offer quality educations, earning an online degree in nonprofit management from a regionally accredited school provides several advantages. Credits from regionally accredited schools easily transfer to nationally accredited ones, but the opposite is rarely true. Some nationally accredited programs are ineligible for scholarships or certain forms of financial aid.
A school's eligibility to receive federal financial aid is determined by the U.S. Department of Education. While the DOE doesn't accredit schools itself, this branch of the government relies on other organizations, such as the Council for Higher Education Accreditation, to assess accrediting bodies. CHEA is a quality assurance group dedicated to monitoring accreditation organizations around the country. By ensuring that accreditors are holding schools to the appropriate standards, CHEA assists the DOE in determining which schools should receive aid. A full database of accredited programs and institutions can be found on CHEA's website.
JOB PLACEMENT: MBA IN NONPROFIT MANAGEMENT
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects that jobs in the business management sector ― including nonprofit-related roles ― will increase by roughly 6% between 2014 and 2024, resulting in more than half a million newly created positions. MBA in nonprofit management recipients will be well-positioned to compete for these jobs, particularly management roles in the not-for-profit sector.
Unemployment rates in business and nonprofit management vary significantly by specific job title. Using current data from U.S. News & World Report, the following comparison table looks at unemployment projections for 12 common careers in nonprofit management.
|Occupation||Unemployment Rate (2017)|
|Operations Research Analyst||2.6%|
|Human Resources Specialist||2.7%|
|Market Research Analyst||3.1%|
|Business Operations Manager||3.9%|
Source: U.S. News & World Report
The average unemployment rate of all 12 occupations is 2.98%. Comparatively, the average unemployment rate for all occupations nationwide currently sits at 4.5%.
EARNING A LIVING
Much like unemployment rates, the salary expectations for someone with an MBA in nonprofit management will largely depend on their job title. Other factors to consider include experience level, organization size, and city/state of employment. The next table features 20-year earnings projections for five of the most popular occupations related to nonprofit leadership.
|Occupation||Median Annual Salary for Entry-Level Employees (0-5 Years)||Median Annual Salary for Mid-Career Employees (5-10 Years)||Median Annual Salary for Experienced Employees (10-20 Years)||Median Annual Salary for Late-Career Employees (20+ Years)|
|Executive Director, Nonprofit Organization||$51,917||$60,577||$69,402||$79,517|
|Program Manager, Nonprofit Organization||$45,227||$50,919||$53,428||$56,391|
|Program Coordinator, Nonprofit Organization||$39,304||$42,339||$44,658||$48,618|
|Development Manager, Nonprofit Organization||$46,427||$51,582||$57,563||$56,712|
All five occupations experience salary growth of at least 22% after 20 years on the job. Fundraisers reported the highest growth rate: n 82.2% increase in earnings between the entry-level and late-career stages. Nonprofit executive directors ranked second with 53.2% salary growth, followed by nonprofit program managers with 24.7% growth.
Those who earn an MBA in nonprofit management will be qualified for various leadership roles in the nonprofit sector, although individual eligibility may depend on areas of specialization. Four common career pathways in nonprofit management are outlined below.
Logisticians: Logisticians account for the various resources that comprise the supply chain of an organization, including manpower, transportation, materials, tools, and financial assets. In the nonprofit sector, logisticians are trained to minimize overhead costs and exercise efficiency throughout the supply chain in order to save as much money as possible.
Management Analysts: Also known as management consultants, management analysts meet with executives and business leaders to discuss ways to make their organization run more smoothly, effectively, and efficiently. Many analysts work exclusively within the nonprofit sector, offering advice and wisdom to entrepreneurs and nonprofit managers looking to improve their organization's structure.
Operations Research Analysts: Similar to management consultants, operations research analysts work with organizational leaders specifically in areas related to day-to-day operations. They rely on algorithms, statistical analyses, business modeling, and other strategies to predict the results of different operational changes in order to determine the best course of action for a particular organization.
Fundraisers: Fundraisers are responsible for securing financial support for different organizations and causes. In nonprofit management, fundraisers must often seek funding from investors and venture capitalists, write grants, and collect donations in order to keep their organization afloat.
|Profession||Median Annual Salary||Projected Growth (2014-24)|
|Logisticians||$74,260||2% (+2,500 jobs)|
|Management Analysts||$81,320||14% (+103,200 jobs)|
|Operations Research Analysts||$78,630||30% (+27,600 jobs)|
|Fundraisers||$52,970||9% (+6,900 jobs)|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)
Making professional connections and learning about different approaches to nonprofit management is crucial to your success. Professional organizations offer a great entry point for students who want to learn more about their chosen career path. Below you'll find three of the country's most prominent organizations established for nonprofit managers and personnel. These organizations host networking events, provide online trainings, maintain active job boards, and offer other services for career-ready college graduates. Resources like these often prove invaluable as you complete your degree requirements and prepare to enter the job market.
National Council of Nonprofits: Considered the country's largest professional network for nonprofits, the NCN represents more than 25,000 organizations. The council's website includes tools and tutorials for nonprofit managers related to finance, human resources, ethics and accountability, fundraising, and other important topics.
Society for Nonprofits: Established more than 30 years ago, SNPO has grown to represent more than 6,000 members nationwide. Perks for registered members include a complimentary magazine subscription, access to a 'members-only' online resource library, and discounts on professional insurance coverage.
American Sustainable Business Council: This 501(c)(4) organization represents more than 200,000 organizations and 325,000 individual employees working in the business sector. As a leading advocate for sustainable operations, the ASCB's online action center features the latest news on initiatives related to climate and energy, food labeling, healthcare and other hot topics in the business world.
Financing Your Online MBA in Nonprofit Management
Despite the relative affordability of online MBA programs, most students still need financial assistance. Students should complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form to learn more about loans, grants, and other opportunities offered through the U.S. government. Additionally, private grants and scholarships are widely available through nonprofit organizations, companies, and other sources. Check out our collection of resources below to learn more about financial aid options.
Approximately two-thirds of today's college students rely on loans to fund their education, but there are plenty of overlooked financing options you can use to reduce your overall student debt.
Completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is a crucial first step for any student with financial needs. Our FAFSA guide features a step-by-step rundown on the process and answers to several frequently asked questions.
Financial aid for online learning is equivalent to what you'll find for campus-based learning, but that hasn't always been the case. Learn about the changes that have taken place, as well as the different funding opportunities available to online students.
Online programs can provide an affordable and flexible option for women trying to balance the demands of work, family, and earning their degree. We've curated a list of valuable scholarships specifically for women.
Online college programs can be a flexible, affordable option for single parents who are interested in earning a degree and securing their family's financial future. We've compiled a list of scholarships, grants, and other financial aid options geared toward single moms and dads.
Millions of dollars in free money is available to U.S. military personnel, but much of it goes unused. Learn more about grants, scholarships, and other financial aid opportunities available to veterans, active-duty service members, and reservists.
Students who pursue online degrees will be eligible for scholarships, grants and other financial aid that is unavailable to their brick-and-mortar counterparts. Learn more about these financial opportunities for web-based learners.
Finance — the study of money and asset management — is one of the most popular degree concentrations for MBA students. Learn about the best schools for this area of study with our comprehensive degree guide.
Another popular specialization field for MBA students, human resources (or HR) focuses on hiring, new employee orientation and other administrative needs. Visit our guide to master's degrees in HR for more information.
Our page dedicated to resources for business students includes links to professional organizations, open courseware, industry publications, books and business-minded users to follow on Twitter.
Our career page for business degree graduates includes a state-by-state breakdown of business careers and academic options for business students, as well as popular job sites, professional organizations and continuing education opportunities for established professionals.