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Nonprofit and Community Leadership Certificate

Gain insight on careers in
the nonprofit community sector

The Nonprofit & Community Leadership graduate certificate program prepares students to be agents of social change for the common good and transformational community leaders by providing them essential administrative and leadership skills.

The certificate is designed for students considering careers in the nonprofit community sector/international NGOs, those interested in developing their leadership capacity, and students generally interested in community service and public life. The program is dedicated to the development of mission-driven leaders, organizations, and communities. It emphasizes fundamental knowledge about nonprofit and communitybased organizations, the current trends, challenges and best practices in nonprofit leadership.

Program details

  • A 12 semester hour certificate program
  • Open to all UD undergraduate students with Junior standing, equivalent to 60 credit hours at time of course registration
  • Minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA at time of application 
  • Six semester hours can double count as undergraduate elective hours
  • No GRE required for application or enrollment
  • No additional cost to UD undergraduate students

Apply here
  • A 12 semester hour certificate program
  • Minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA at time of application
  • Minimal additional cost for UD graduate students

Apply here
  • A 12 semester hour certificate program
  • Open to non-degree/certificate only students in Dayton and Cincinnati regions
  • No GRE required for enrollment or application
  • Completed bachelor's degree with minimum overall 2.75 GPA
  • The cost of tuition is competitive with regional state universities

Apply here

NPCL Certificate Courses

  • MPA 561: Nonprofit and Community Leadership

UD catalog requirements
  • MPA 508: Contemporary Issues
  • MPA 526: Leadership in Building Community
  • MPA 562: Strategic Planning for Nonprofit Organizations
  • MPA 563: NGO Management and Development
  • MPA 565: Grant Writing
  • MPA 566: Nonprofit Community Relations
  • MPA 569: Nonprofit Financial Management

UD catalog requirements


The Nonprofit and Community Leadership Graduate certificate program is offered by the Department of Political Science. Please contact Dr. Li-Yin Liu if you're interested in the certificate program.

NPCL alumni testimonials

"As a working professional in the nonprofit sector, this continuous education program is an opportunity for busy professionals working in a rapidly changing industry to tackle challenges with a strategic approach. The program provides opportunities for professional and personal growth by using 'real world' problems in the industry by applying concepts covered in the classroom. Participants can expect to take nonprofit theory and practices and apply everyday work day challenges and projects to emerge as a better leader and problem solver."

Tracy Morgan, Donor Relations Manager, Community Blood Center

"I first heard of the program while working as a Community Outreach Counselor for United Way's Greater Dayton Helplink 211. I emailed Dr. Neiheisel and inquired about the program and he was very helpful. I currently work for Homefull, which is another Nonprofit as a Case Manager at a Permanent Supportive Housing Site. The NPCL program has given me the opportunity to learn more about Nonprofits and how they operate and how they are structured. I hope to soon begin the process of starting my own nonprofit based off of my strategic plan that I created as an assignment in one of Dr. Neiheisel classes. I am totally committed to helping others and after meeting him and taking this certification program it has moved me closer to my goal."

Shara Finklea, Case Manager in Supportive Services, Homefull

"The NPCL certificate training gave me the opportunity to learn a new business model, as I was working on changing careers from the profit sector to nonprofit. I am now doing marketing for a nonprofit business and all the classes have provided tremendous insight into practices and processes that I had not been exposed to. The certification is set up as well to be convenient while working. I have also really enjoyed meeting other students who work in various nonprofit organizations."

Michelle Wesney, Service Line Marketing and Communications, Kettering Health Network


Department of Political Science

St. Joseph Hall
300 College Park
Dayton, Ohio 45469 - 1425