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New Certification Offered Through Non-Profit Leadership Alliance at SU

Non-Profit Leadership Alliance LogoA new program designed to prepare students for work in the non-profit sector will be available to our students. The Non-Profit Leadership Alliance (NLA) is a national organization that provides certification in the management of non-profits.

Salisbury University will begin enrollment this spring and the program that will start in fall 2017. SU students completing the program will gain access to a network of nonprofit career resources and will receive the Certified Non-Profit Professional (CNP) credential. This nationally recognized certificate is accepted as evidence of preparation for entry-level professional positions by many national and local organizations such as the YMCA, Catholic Charities, Fair Trade Campaigns and Habitat for Humanity, among others.

According to Dr. Carolina Bown, NLA campus director, this certificate program is “the perfect preparation for those undergraduate students who have done volunteer or service work, who are passionate about ‘making a difference’ and/or are looking for a career path in which they can apply knowledge from their majors into the non-profit sector.”

The program is open to students from any major offered by SU and should not add to the time required to graduate. All requirements for the major as well as for the certificate can be accomplished as part of the student’s overall course of study. Students will work with Dr. Bown and their academic advisors to establish individualized curricular and co-curricular programs that fulfill the requirements of the certificate. Typically, students will address 10 “core competencies” by taking two courses – to be determined soon, completing a 300-hour internship in a 501(c)(3) organization and by participating in at least in one annual Alliance Management Institute (AMI) conference. Two examples of co-curricular programs are completing a study abroad program or leading an environmental, cultural or social cause. “The hands-on experience and the development of leadership and service skills under professional guidance will set these students apart from their peers,” Bown explained.

Currently, the Alliance is present in almost 40 colleges and universities. Salisbury University is one of the only two institutions in Maryland to partner with NLA. Nationally, there are over 9,000 certified non-profit professionals (CNPs) who, in conjunction with the Alliance’s non-profit and campuses partners, represent the largest network in the non-profit sector of the country. For those interested in knowing more about NLA at Salisbury University, please contact Dr. Carolina Bown at

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