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A public and nonprofit management MBA concentration

Make a difference in the world through a position in government, public service, or nonprofit management. Willamette's full-time MBA offers a public and nonprofit management concentration to help future change-makers gain the skills they need. 

We know that the future is shaped by advocates operating in the public and nonprofit sectors. That’s why we feel a responsibility to prepare students to meet the challenges of this meaningful work and learn how to make decisions that consider long-term outcomes. 

Learn about strategic marketing and financial management for nonprofits, strategic planning, and leadership as you work toward a meaningful career. With this academic path, you will gain the skills, insights, and experience needed to fulfill an organization’s mission or represent the interests of your community. 

Prepare for a life of purpose. This MBA concentration will equip you with the tools you need to take on a leadership role and have a positive impact on this and future generations. 

  • A multi-sector approach to the MBA concentration in nonprofit management and public administration

    As you research MBA degrees, consider a program that will give you career flexibility. Unlike a traditional MBA, our degree takes a multi-sector approach to management education. When you choose an MBA with a concentration in nonprofit management, you will earn a degree that goes beyond management and business skills.

    This concentration focuses on government, nonprofit management, and public service. Learn about the differing needs of these sectors and prepare for your career with a program that’s designed to give you options.

  • Recognition for our public and nonprofit management MBA concentration

    Willamette's MBA program holds the distinction of dual accreditation from two prestigious organizations, NASPAA and AACSB International. Dual accreditation is very rare. The AACSB is considered the gold standard for MBA programs – and fewer than 5% of schools worldwide hold this accreditation. We're also the only MBA program accredited by NASPAA, which focuses on programs with a public and non-profit focus.

    What does this mean for you? Our accreditation gives your degree recognition in all sectors. Companies seeking the best talent will look at the quality of their education. When you go to apply for jobs post-graduation, Willamette’s reputation will help you stand out. 

    We maintain this recognition by continuing to create an innovative and engaging environment. By striving for excellence, we ensure that our reputation earns our students respect among their professional peers.

  • Comprehensive courses through our MBA nonprofit management and public management concentration

    Students can choose from many elective courses to tailor their education to their career goals. Our core classes underscore the importance of all sectors, business, public, and non-profit. Willamette's faculty is made up of experienced professionals actively working in their fields and they bring their expertise to the classroom. From grant writing to strategic planning, you will gain the knowledge and skills you need to build a thriving career. 

    Some of the courses for our public and nonprofit management program include:

    • Philanthropic Investment for Community Impact (GSM 603A/B)
      • This two-semester course empowers students to manage a micro-organization. Students will allocate funds to local nonprofit organizations running high-impact social programs and see the power of philanthropy in real time.
    • Public Policy Studies (GSM 6201)
      • This course delves into the intricacies of policy formation and equips students with essential tools for policy analysis.
    • Seminar in Benefit-Cost Analysis (GSM 6203)
      • Students learn how to evaluate public policies using cost-benefit analysis. The skills gained in this course help students make informed decisions that maximize societal benefits.
    • Strategic Marketing for Public and Private Not-for-Profit Organizations (GSM 6231)
      • In this course, students learn how to build value-creating relationships with donors, clients, and stakeholders. Students will dive into the unique challenges of the nonprofit sector.
    • Internship (GSM 7251)
      • Students have the opportunity to gain real-world experience in public and nonprofit management, applying classroom knowledge to practical situations.
  • Real-world experience

    At Willamette, we value hands-on learning and know that experience can be the best teacher. That’s why we allow students to take up to three semesters of internships for academic credit. 

    In addition, our PACE and Philanthropic Investment courses are highly experiential and have special benefits for students seeking careers in public or non-profit enterprises. Put the skills gained from your classes into practice, build your professional network and connections, and prepare for your career.

  • Pursue diverse career opportunities with our public and nonprofit management concentration

    Graduates of Willamette’s MBA program pursue a variety of career paths in the public and nonprofit sectors. Alumni have gone on to hold roles as executive directors, program managers, directors of development, fundraising managers, and financial managers, among others. Many experience further professional growth and end up heading organizations and serving on boards of directors. 

    With the help of our career management service center, MBA students can design their career path to secure the job they want. From the moment you arrive on campus, your goals will be supported. However you aspire to have an impact, we will ensure you have the opportunity to do so. 

  • The benefit of a prime location

    With campuses in both Salem and Portland, our MBA program offers access to a wide variety of learning and professional opportunities. We value hands-on learning and we maintain deep ties with our community to give our students access to meaningful experiences. 

    Our Salem campus is located across the street from the Oregon State Capitol. This proximity provides students with unique access to opportunities. From working with legislators to advocating for a social cause before government representatives, gain experience making your voice heard. 

    As one of the most socially engaged areas in the Pacific Northwest, and a renowned cultural center, Portland is an ideal city to grow your network in public and nonprofit management. In Portland, you will have the opportunity to work with local nonprofits and learn how businesses are prioritizing social responsibility. 

  • Master of Business Administration vs Master in Nonprofit Management vs Master in Public Administration

    Trying to decide between an MBA and a master’s degree in nonprofit management or public administration? Consider the breadth and depth of each program. 

    While a master’s in nonprofit management or MPA is highly specialized, our MBA program takes a well-rounded approach to your management education. The program encompasses business principles, leadership skills, and management insights. 

    This is a more flexible path that will open doors to a broader range of career opportunities – and deliver more value to your nonprofit organization or public service role. 

    Choosing a concentration won’t limit your education. Even with a concentration in public and nonprofit management, you will still learn the fundamentals of all aspects of business – from finance to marketing. This well-rounded approach ensures that graduates are prepared to navigate the complex challenges of various sectors and roles. 

Earn a versatile and valuable degree

Willamette MBA equips graduates with the skills and knowledge needed to excel in various roles. The degree program typically takes two years (21 months) to complete. Our full-time MBA program is located in Salem, the center of government for our state and our county, and 40 minutes from Portland -  Oregon’s largest city. 

Drive positive change in organizations and communities with your Willamette MBA.

Willamette University

Early Career and Career Change MBA

Salem Campus

900 State Street
Salem Oregon 97301 U.S.A.