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Information on Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) Degree Programs in Nonprofit Management

Majors Overview June 10, 2015

This article talks about Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) degree programs in Nonprofit Management and their educational requirements, coursework, job and wage outlook, and continuing education choices.

Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) Programs in Nonprofit Management

The Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) degree in Nonprofit Management may help a graduate obtain a leadership position within a nonprofit organization. Enrollees learn every aspect of nonprofit, including program planning, fundraising methods, and effective strategies for managing volunteers. The motivating factor for those seeking a degree in nonprofit management is very different from the higher salary potential sought in a for-profit organization by the traditional MBA graduate.

Graduates from the Nonprofit MBA programs expect to become adept at redressing social imbalances and injustices, providing services to an under-served portion of the population and ensuring fair and equal treatment of all individuals. Graduates would benefit from possessing the ability to function effectively in culturally diverse settings, in addition to strong communication skills.

Coursework in Nonprofit Management MBA programs is devised to train degree candidates in the theoretical and practical areas necessary for managing a social organization effectively. An internship is often in the program, whereby students can gain valuable experience by working under supervision at an actual nonprofit organization. The operational and financial aspects of maintaining a nonprofit are taught to students who simultaneously learn to address the management issues pertinent to this type of organization.

Typically, students complete these programs within 2-3 years, though there are accelerated programs offered that they could complete within 16 months. Graduates can seek executive leadership positions in the nonprofit, governmental or public sectors.

Educational Requirements

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a bachelor’s degree from an accredited school, in addition to having actual business experience of 1-2 years. Schools may also insist on submission of an admissions essay, letters of recommendation and standardized test scores. TOEFL test scores may have to be submitted by non-native English speakers.


Coursework incorporates electives in humanities and liberal arts to compliment core business administration classes. Some schools feature a foreign language requirement in their curriculum. Core coursework may cover topic areas such as:

•Nonprofit marketing
•Strategic program evaluation
•Business ethics
•Volunteer management
•Effective grant writing

Job and Wage Outlook

Nonprofit managers and executives are usually not paid as much as their counterparts in for-profit organizations. In May 2014, social and community service managers brought in an average annual wage of $67,730 (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, a faster-than-average job growth rate of 21% has been predicted for these professionals (BLS). Individual and family services employed just over 50% of these professionals.

Continuing Education Choices

Program graduates may seek continued education by earning a doctorate in public administration or public policy that could lead to a career in research or academia.

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