Master of Nonprofit Leadership & Management


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ASU's master's degree is one of the few in the country accredited by the Nonprofit Academic Centers Council. Learn more.

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The Master of Nonprofit Leadership & Management (MNLM) degree, within the ASU School of Community Resources and Development, is intended for professionals who work in or desire to work in the nonprofit sector. The program provides an opportunity to obtain an advanced degree that addresses the unique character of nonprofit organizations and the social sector. Students interested in nonprofit management and social sector organizations explore both theory and the practice of management and leadership in the nonprofit sector. Students who complete the degree gain leadership skills and knowledge in topics such as the management of human resources (both paid and volunteer), fundraising, program evaluation, fiscal management, and governance in nonprofit organizations. The degree allows graduates enhanced recognition and credentials similar to students who have graduate degrees in administration or management.

The Master of Nonprofit Leadership & Management (MNLM) degree is offered in two ways. You choose which format when you start the application process.

  1. In-Person format (located on Downtown Phoenix Campus, and can include online courses).
  2. Online format


The MNLM consists of a minimum of 33 credit hours. Students are required to take 15 credit hours of core coursework. 3 credit hours is the capstone course, 15 credit hours of elective coursework.

Core courses (see descriptions here) (15 credit hours)

  • NLM 510 The Nonprofit Sector
  • NLM 520 Financial and Resource Management
  • NLM 530 Program Evaluation & Information Management
  • NLM 540 Strategic Human Resources Management /or/ NLM 545 Volunteer Resource Management
  • NLM 550 Philanthropy

Capstone course (see description here) (3 credit hours)

  • NLM 620 Capstone: Integrative Seminar

Elective courses* (see descriptions here) (15 credit hours)

  • NLM 515 Nonprofit Organizational Behavior and Management 
  • NLM 525 Fundraising and Resource Development
  • NLM 540 Strategic Human Resource Management
  • NLM 545 Volunteer Resource Management
  • NLM 560 Leadership & Ethics in the Nonprofit Sector
  • NLM 562 Social Entrepreneurship
  • NLM 565 Grant Writing for Nonprofit Organizations
  • NLM 570 International Nongovernmental Organizations (INGO's)
  • NLM 572 Community & Social Innovations
  • NLM 605 Nonprofits, Law and Society
  • NLM 610 Executive Leadership and Governance

               *courses may be added without prior notice.

Petition for elective course approval

If you wish to take one course outside of NLM courses, it must be pre-approved by committee using the petition. The petition must be worded within an email and include an attachment of a syllabus of the requested class and an unofficial transcript. The petition must be submitted via email by the following deadlines. Petitions received after these deadlines will not be considered that semester. Email the petition here.

Petition deadlines:

  • Fall Semester: July 1st
  • Spring Semester: December 1st
  • Summer Term: May 1st

Capstone/Integrative Seminar

Students will complete the degree by taking the capstone course that integrates and synthesizes material from prior courses. The MNLM degree requires students to demonstrate competency in nonprofit management by synthesizing and applying core knowledge, skills, and abilities in a final capstone project. Students develop, present and defend their capstone project as the culminating experience in the MNLM program. Students demonstrate competency by earning an A (4.0) or a B (3.0) in the program’s capstone course, NLM 620, Integrative Seminar. The capstone is to be taken in the final spring or fall semester of the program after completion of all required core courses and most if not all elective courses. Core courses must have a grade of B (3.0) or better.

Application deadlines

  • Fall Semester: July 26th
  • Spring Semester: December 16th
  • Summer Term: April 27th

Applications must be complete by the above dates for the application term or your application will be applied to the next term (fall, spring, summer). 

How to apply


The cost of a college education varies from student to student. Differences such as your major, living arrangements, residency status and other variables mean the cost of your college education might not be identical to your classmates. Use our tools to estimate what college will cost you and see how other ASU students paid for school. Determine your cost of your education here.

A program fee is added each semester in addition to tuition and other university fees.

Contact information

For administrative questions about the Master of Nonprofit Leadership and Management, MNLM, contact the School of Community Resources and Development at SCRD@asu.edu.