UCF Launches Nonprofit Management Major, Public Budgeting and Finance Certificate

 In Public Administration

By Karen Guin

UCF will offer two new academic programs this fall to address increasing workforce demands in areas of public administration — and both programs are accepting applications.

A new major in nonprofit management — the first program of its kind in Florida — will prepare students to lead and manage nonprofit organizations.

“The nonprofit sector is a vital economic force and the nation’s fastest growing sector,” said Stephanie Krick, associate lecturer and the director of undergraduate programs for the School of Public Administration. “Nearly 11 million people in the United States, or about 10 percent of our workforce, are employed by nonprofit organizations.”

Students from all backgrounds, including health and human services, the sciences, and the performing and fine arts, will find the major a good fit, said Krick, who has been teaching courses in nonprofit management at UCF for more than a decade.

“Many millennials want to work for a mission-driven organization and ultimately make a difference in the world,” she said.

Nonprofit management majors will select either a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science plan. Both require 11 core courses and eight restricted elective courses beyond the university’s General Education Plan. The curriculum includes an internship and a service-learning project with a nonprofit.

Successful students will develop competencies in volunteer management, board development, financial management, community outreach and marketing, program evaluation, fundraising, and general nonprofit management.

The new major is the school’s third academic program in the discipline, joining other programs leading to a Nonprofit Management Minor or a Master of Nonprofit Management.

UCF’s nonprofit management major should benefit local and state nonprofits who place the majors in internships, service-learning projects or volunteer positions at their organizations, Krick said.

Joan Nelson, senior vice president for community investment at Heart of Florida United Way and a member of the school’s Nonprofit Advisory Board agrees. “This is great news for all, especially the nonprofit community that continues to benefit from the graduates of all UCF nonprofit programs,” Nelson wrote in a congratulatory email.

Also new this fall is a program leading to a Graduate Certificate in Public Budgeting and Finance.

The 18-credit hour certificate program will provide advanced graduate study for students seeking jobs such as budget officer, chief financial officer, comptroller and analyst. The program also will prepare students to receive the Certified Government Finance Officer designation from the Florida Government Finance Officers Association.

“Public budgeting and finance long focused on controlling government spending to avoid corruption, enhance oversight and promote accountability,” said Assistant Professor David Mitchell, who led the new program’s development. “Today it’s even more significant and complex.”

For example, governments often use third-party providers to provide services that require multiple contracts and payments based on complicated formulas. They also rely on increasingly sophisticated financial instruments and transactions to conduct their business, Mitchell said.

Students who enroll in the new certificate program will expand their knowledge of the discipline through required and elective graduate-level courses. The school has developed four new courses for the program.

Apply to the new major at Undergraduate Admissions. Apply to the new graduate certificate at Graduate Admissions.

To learn more, contact the School of Public Administration at 407-823-2604.

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