How can a nonprofit degree benefit nonprofit leaders?

As a new generation of business professionals enter the world of scholastics and the marketplace, the awareness of topics like social impact, environmentalism, ethics, and sustainability have never been more important. While the bottom line for business continues to be a high priority for all organizations, after all, in order to serve the common good, you must stay in business, today's nonprofits must stay financially healthy while they do the work making the world a better place. The intersection of higher education and nonprofit business is where a master's in nonprofit management truly shines.

Many of the nation's best business schools now offer master's degrees with concentrations in nonprofit management. Some are Master's of Arts in Nonprofit Management while others are Master's of Business Administration programs with specializations in Nonprofit Management. While an MA is typically a degree an undergraduate student would apply for immediately following the completion of a bachelor's degree, an MBA is a program a working professional would want to consider in order to gain a better understanding of business theory and application. Here are just a few reasons one should pursue a higher education in nonprofit management

A nonprofit degree offers a solid foundation in business-related topics

Most Master's of Arts and Master's of Business Administration programs with an emphasis in nonprofit management will include foundational courses which ensure a student's exposure to accounting, economics, finances, and organizational behavior. Students with the proper academic experience going into a master's program will often be able to waive these courses at the beginning of their graduate studies and go right to core courses. Many core courses within a master's program will include more in-depth study of business, management, and leadership concepts needed for a career in nonprofit leadership.

A nonprofit degree offers the student a large business network

Many business schools across the country have realized the need to offer their students access to resources outside of a great curriculum. Some schools offer courses in cohort-based structures allowing students to connect with one another through group projects. A well-defined alumni group is another key characteristic a student should look for if she wants to network with established business professionals in her field of study. Business schools that have industry practitioners as instructors may also make internship opportunities for its students, as this is a very popular way for students to get their foot in the door at the corporate level.

A hybrid nonprofit degree can deliver flexibility and convenience

A hybrid Master's of Arts or Master's of Business Administration in nonprofit management is an excellent way to pursue a higher education without needing to relocate to do so. Working professionals may find it difficult to move to a new city or leave a current position with a high-quality organization for a degree. Hybrid programs require short residencies or perhaps sporadic campus visits over the course of the program. Students within these degrees can often move at their own pace; while some choose to double up on courses and graduate in less than a year, others value a slower pace and may take up to seven years to complete all program requirements.

There are many more reasons one should consider a degree in nonprofit management. If you have a heart for making the world a better place, or just want to do business in a more ethical or sustainable way, seeking a degree of this type may be a great direction for your career.