SPIA Graduate Certificate

SPIA Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit and NGO Management (N.M.)

Virginia Tech’s School of Public and International Affairs offers an exciting certificate in Nonprofit and Non-Governmental Organizations (N.G.O.) Management. We are expanding the reach of the certificate by moving all courses to an online format and focusing the core material on the most vital and urgent management challenges for nonprofit and nongovernmental organizations.

The certificate is ideal for rising professionals across the globe navigating the complex fiscal, managerial and networked environments of nonprofits and NGOs during a time of significant change. Courses in the certificate also include a focus on leadership, complex management, program evaluation with an emphasis on accountability, and all courses seamlessly integrate the domestic and international context.

The School of Public and International Affair’s graduate certificate in Nonprofit and Nongovernmental Organization Management serves graduate students in NCR and Blacksburg and working professionals in both nonprofits/NGOs and the public sector. The certificate fosters the development of students by offering a streamlined curriculum focusing on the seamlessness between international and domestic environments, engaged pedagogy, reflexivity, and collaborative learning.

How to Apply:
Fill out the online application for participation in the certificate program.

For more information, please contact: Amanda Fawkes amandafawkes@vt.edu

N.M. Application and Admissions
How to Apply:
Fill out the online application for participation in the certificate program.


Admission and award requirements for the Nonprofit and Nongovernmental Organization Management certificate program are equivalent to the requirements for the Graduate School and the participating SPIA programs.

For persons not already enrolled in a Virginia Tech master’s or doctoral program:

  • Bachelor’s Degree
  • Graduate School application (Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit and NGO Management)
  • Application Fee (see Graduate School for amount)
  • Transcripts – undergraduate and other graduate degrees, if applicable.
  • GRE scores are not required.
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Letter describing your substantive interests and possible area of specialization
  • International Students – also include TOEFL examination scores

For master’s and doctoral students:

  • be accepted as a graduate student in an established academic department
  • have at least one faculty member from the School with experience in NPOs/NGOs on your graduate committee
  • have your application signed by your major professor
  • provide evidence of how you will integrate this certificate program into your overall plan of study

Certificate Award

In order to earn the graduate certificate in Nonprofit and Nongovernmental Organization Management, students must complete all certificate courses with a grade of “C-” or better and maintain a minimum GPA of 3.0 across the certificate courses

For more information, please contact: Amanda Fawkes amandafawkes@vt.edu

N.M. Course Requirements
Students are required to take four out five of the following courses:

  • SPIA 5514 – Nongovernmental Organizations in International Development (offered on Blacksburg campus and online) Roles of Nongovernmental Organizations (NGO) in international development. NGO interactions with local governments, community organizations, international governmental organizations, and private businesses. Tensions and collaborations between NGOs and other development actors.
  • SPIA 5544 – Public and Nonprofit Financial Management (offered only online) Role of finance in the management of complex public, nonprofit, and nongovernmental organizations. Functions of financial management, including planning and budgeting, reporting, resource acquisition, and internal controls in the nonprofit context.
  • SPIA 5574 – Nonprofit Organization and Management (offered on Blacksburg campus and online) Internal management for nonprofit and nongovernmental organization managers with emphasis on unique cultural, social, political, and economic challenges facing nonprofit managers. Key management knowledge, processes, and systems skills for managers in nonprofit organizations and NGOs and the role of internal collaboration. Challenges facing domestic nonprofits compared to those found in nongovernmental organizations across the globe.
  • SPIA 5534 – Nonprofit Organization Leadership (offered on Blacksburg campus and online) Methods of devising and implementing leadership strategies in the complex economic, cultural, social, and political contexts in which nonprofit and nongovernmental organizations operate. Theories, models, and tools for success, focusing on leadership accountability, ethos, and performance.
  • SPIA 5524 – Nonprofit Accountability and Evaluation (offered only online) Societal role of the nonprofit sector. Why nonprofit organizations are held accountable, to whom they are accountable, and how organizations can satisfy accountability demands. Evaluation tools for accountability.

For more information, please contact: Amanda Fawkes amandafawkes@vt.edu