Field of Study: Nonprofit Management
Nonprofit management programs prepare people to run foundations, public agencies, and other not-for-profit organizations. Students learn to manage budgets and staff. They also learn about fundraising, taxes, and laws.
If profit greases the wheels of our society, then nonprofit nourishes its heart. Nonprofit enterprises include such worthy enterprises as hospitals, schools, museums, and charitable organizations. Working for a nonprofit institution can be a very fulfilling job.
The nonprofit sector accounts for well over one million businesses. That means there are a lot of jobs in this field. Nonprofit organizations and associations contribute to society. They provide education, health care, and many other services. Even though they are not intended to make a profit, they need to run efficiently so that every dollar is used wisely.
When you study nonprofit management, you learn many of the same subjects that are taught in any business major. The program covers accounting, marketing, and human resources. But it also covers the tax laws that apply to nonprofit organizations. Fundraising is another important subject.
If you want to study nonprofit management, you should expect to study for more than four years beyond high school. Fewer than 20 colleges offer a bachelor's degree in this field.
The more common route is to get a master's in business administration (MBA) after earning a bachelor's degree in some other business field. About 50 business schools offer an MBA program that specializes in nonprofit management. The MBA usually takes two years, in addition to an internship between the first and second years. You may be able to start with a bachelor's degree in a different field, such as liberal arts or social science. In that case, it helps if you have some business work experience before you apply for the MBA program.
Still another route is to get a master's degree. This requires one or two years after a bachelor's degree. About 80 universities offer a graduate degree in nonprofit management. Often you can study it as a specialization within a department of public administration or health administration.