Nonprofit Management Certificate

Nonprofit agencies of all kinds are being established to fulfill needs in our communities, while existing community benefit organizations are expanding to meet increasing demand for services. This growth means new opportunities in the rewarding nonprofit sector.

The 18-credit nonprofit management certificate is offered by the College of General Studies in partnership with Pitt's Graduate School of Public and International Affairs. The program provides a solid foundation for those looking to enter the field of public service, to enhance their current roles, or to assume leadership positions. Coursework covers topics including management, fundraising, human resources, and more.


The CGS Difference

This certificate can be pursued as a standalone program or in conjunction with the completion of another degree at Pitt. The credits you earn while completing this certificate may also be transferred to a bachelor’s degree program at CGS, such as our BA in public service.

Who Should Participate

  • Professionals with public relations experience
  • Professionals with an interest in fundraising
  • Professionals with a background in program development
  • Professionals with knowledge of marketing and advertising
  • Recent graduates or current students who wish to pursue a career in the nonprofit field
  • Undergraduate degree-seeking students who wish to have an intermediate credential
  • Technology workers
  • Entrepreneurs who wish to start a nonprofit

Program Expectations

Graduates of this program will be able to:

  • Organize, manage, or supervise a nonprofit organization
  • Hire and train an efficient staff
  • Understand the structural and financial issues unique to nonprofits
  • Lead effective fundraising efforts
  • Write grant proposals

Credit Requirements

  • The Nonprofit Management certificate requires 18 credits of core courses, including a three-credit internship.
  • Students must achieve a minimum grade of C (2.0) or better for all courses required for the program.
  • Credits earned at other accredited educational institutions may be eligible for transfer. However, a minimum of nine credits must be earned at the University of Pittsburgh.

Required Courses: (18 credits)

Complete all six required courses.

Format: F2F and Web
Format: F2F and Hybrid
Format: F2F and Web
Format: Hybrid
Note: PUBSRV 1910 Institute of Politics Internship/Seminar (4 cr.) may be used in place of PUBSRV 1900 Internship Seminar. Check with your CGS advisor prior to registering.

Program Notes

Although courses for the certificate can be taken in any order, we strongly recommend that students consider completing PUBSRV 0020 Introduction to Public Service first in order to gain exposure to main theories and practices in the field. Normally the internship would be completed last; however, students should start planning their internship early and review their options with a CGS advisor.

  • The internship requires 120 hours at the internship site along with registration for the PUBSRV 1900 course.
  • Students who work at the University should consult with the PUBSRV internship instructor as to whether they need to complete internship hours outside of Pitt or in a different department on campus.
  • PUBSRV 1900 is a 3-credit course and may not be divided over two semesters. However, the student could work with their internship instructor to see if the 120 hours could be divided over two terms.
  • Learn more about internships»

Program Planning Checklist

Download our handy Nonprofit Management certificate checklist (PDF) to plan and track your progress in the program.

Important: Course Overlap Rules

As you plan your certificate coursework, please make sure to review the CGS Course Overlap policy for information on how many courses can be double-counted if a student elects to pursue a CGS certificate in combination with other CGS and non-CGS majors, minors, and certificates. If you have questions, please contact your CGS advisor or CGS Advising at

Note: Requirements are subject to change. Check with an academic advisor before registering.