Best Master’s in Nonprofit Management Degrees

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Earn a Master’s in Nonprofit Management

The top master’s in nonprofit management programs blend a theoretical curriculum with experiential learning. Nonprofit graduate students gain professional experience through internships and capstone projects.

Students at these programs build a strong network with community-based organizations, nonprofits, and philanthropic foundations, increasing their competitiveness on the job market after graduation. With options ranging from accelerated one-year programs to part-time programs designed for working professionals, these universities offer flexible options for students planning a career in nonprofit management.

Professionals who complete a master’s degree in nonprofit management work as program directors, CEOs, and executive directors for local, national, or international nonprofit organizations. By taking specialized coursework, graduate students also build valuable skills in fundraising management, grant writing, and volunteer management. These high-demand skills let graduates pursue a variety of careers in the growing nonprofit sector. The many master’s in nonprofit management salary opportunities include lucrative and rewarding positions at the management level.

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What are the best Master degree programs in Nonprofit Management?

College Choice wants to help you navigate the growing number of graduate degrees offered in the field of nonprofit studies. To that end, with reference to resources like U.S. News & World Report,, Bureau of Labor Statistics, and school websites, we’ve considered various factors including program and school reputation, tuition, and forecasted salary to compile a list of the forty best Master of Nonprofit Management degree programs. In case you’re interested in assessing online colleges generally, we’ve created a ranking of the best ones in the country.

Annual tuition data had to be figured in several ways. Some schools charge an annual rate. Others charge a rate per term. While, still others charge per credit. For those providing per term or per credit rates, we figured the annual tuition based on completion of the degree in two years. A majority of the programs are designed to be completed in two years, but some can be completed in an accelerated format and so students may be able to complete these programs in less time. Their annual costs in the accelerated format would typically be greater but paid less frequently.


See our rankings methodology page.

  1. Texas A&M University—College Station

    College Station, TX



    The Master of Public Service and Administration program at Texas A&M prepares graduates to become leaders in the nonprofit sector when they complete the nonprofit management track. Graduate students complete 48 credits to earn the degree, while participating in internships, volunteering through the Public Service Organization, and completing a year long capstone project for real-world clients as part of their education. The master’s in nonprofit management track emphasizes the distinctive challenges of nonprofit organizations, including development, political activities, and structural variations. The two year program holds accreditation from the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs, and Administration.

  2. University of Texas—Austin

    Austin, TX



    The Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at UT Austin blends theory-based, analytical coursework with practical applications in its Master of Public Affairs program, which offers a specialization in nonprofit and philanthropic studies. Graduate students complete 48 credits, with a summer internship to build hands on experience. The core curriculum includes 27 credits, with classes in advanced policy economics, policy development, and public management. The master’s degree in nonprofit management prepares graduates to take leadership positions in nonprofit organizations, building skills in nonprofit studies, philanthropy, and volunteerism and community service.

  3. Indiana University—Bloomington

    Bloomington, IN



    The Master of Public Affairs program at IU-Bloomington starts with a core curriculum that builds analytical skills, emphasizes policy issues and governmental processes, and prepares graduate students for their concentration area. The two year program requires 48 credits, with 12 concentration areas, including nonprofit management. The concentration builds competency in fundraising, community service, social entrepreneurship, and socially responsible investing. The master’s in nonprofit management also incorporates management techniques designed to create successful nonprofit leaders. U.S. News & World Report ranks the MPA nonprofit management concentration #1. The program also includes a capstone course and experiential learning requirements.

  4. Carnegie Mellon University

    Pittsburgh, PA



    Carnegie Mellon University offers a master of public management program, which emphasizes leadership skills, decision making, and policy understanding in industries like government, education, and the nonprofit sector. The program’s analytical skill sets and learning outcomes focus on organizations in highly regulated industries, including nonprofits. Designed as a part-time program for working professionals, the MPM includes core classes in organizational management, business analytics, and economic principles of policy analysis, with optional electives in performance management, strategic planning, and organizational change. The program enrolls applicants with nonprofit management experience, preparing graduates to take on leadership roles within their organizations.

  5. University of Southern California

    Los Angeles, CA



    The master of nonprofit leadership and management program through the USC Price School offers targeted training for future leaders at complex nonprofit organizations. Graduate students gain field experience working with leading nonprofit executives, and USC’s Center on Philanthropy and Public Policy offers opportunities to engage with cutting-edge research and practices in philanthropy and nonprofit management. The program incorporates 30 credits of core classes, arranged in three areas: Theory and Context; Leadership and Management; and Analytical Skills. Graduate students can customize their master’s degree in nonprofit management with 10 elective credits, and all students complete an integrative capstone course to apply their learning in the field.

  6. Syracuse University

    Syracuse, NY



    Syracuse University offers a 12 month master of public affairs with a focus in public and nonprofit management. The intensive program trains graduate students to enhance public management, bridge the public and private sectors, and advance public policy. The core curriculum includes courses in policy analysis, public management, and public context, with a focus on executive leadership and management. The nonprofit management concentration adds analytical and managerial courses, with a focus on the budgetary process, organizational management, policy implementation, and strategic nonprofit management. Program alumni hold executive positions with the Smithsonian, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the PEW Charitable Trusts, Teach for America, the American Cancer Society, and other prominent nonprofit organizations.

  7. University of Georgia

    Athens, GA



    The University of Georgia offers a master of arts in nonprofit management and leadership for professionals planning careers in nonprofit leadership. Graduate students complete core classes, supervised internships, and specialized electives to customize their degree. The 33-credit master’s in nonprofit management includes coursework in theory and management of nonprofit organizations, evaluation of professional practice, and fundraising and development for nonprofit organizations. Students choose a two semester internship or a one semester internship with an independent research project. Designed as a 15 month program, incoming students can also choose a part-time option for added flexibility.

  8. Grand Valley State University

    Allendale, MI



    The master of philanthropy and nonprofit leadership at Grand Valley State builds theoretical and practical knowledge for future leaders in nonprofit organizations. The curriculum emphasizes ethical and effective management with the goal of building prosperous and healthy communities. Graduate students complete 36 credit hours, with core classes in nonprofit management, fund development, and organizational theory. Students also choose an emphasis area, including community impact, mission advancement, or nonprofit healthcare, with the option to design a custom emphasis. All graduate students complete a capstone course at the end of their degree. The master’s degree in nonprofit management offers full-time and part-time options.

  9. University of Nebraska—Omaha

    Omaha, NE



    The University of Nebraska – Omaha offers a master of public administration with a concentration in nonprofit management. The degree emphasizes leadership skills for public service careers, with online and on campus options. Nonprofit management graduate students build knowledge relevant to local, national, and international nonprofit organizations, learning how to effectively and ethically manage nonprofit institutions. Within the concentration, students take introduction to the nonprofit sector, fundraising for nonprofit organizations, and either public human resource management or public finance administration. MPA students typically complete the 39 credit degree in just over two years on a full time schedule.

  10. University at Albany—SUNY

    Albany, NY



    The Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy at the University at Albany offers a master of public affairs with a concentration in nonprofit management. The MPA include a core curriculum in public affairs which builds technical and managerial skills, allowing graduates to pursue leadership roles in public and nonprofit organizations. Students complete the 49 credit program with 29 credits of core classes, 15-20 credits in their concentration area, and an internship or career experience. The nonprofit management concentration includes five courses chosen from options like nonprofit governance, inequality and public policy, strategic management, and nonprofits and social transformation.

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