Nonprofit Leadership Alliance

What is the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Certification Program?

Our Mission: To strengthen the social sector with a talented and prepared workforce.

Indiana State University has opportunities available for undergraduate students wanting to launch a meaningful and financially rewarding career in the nonprofit sector through its nationally award-winning Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Certification Program 

The Indiana State University Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Certification Program is an innovative course of study that prepares students for disciplinary-based careers in all nonprofit subsectors:

Students completing the program are credentialed as Certified Nonprofit Professionals (CNP) by the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance.  The CNP credential and Indiana State University program are based on a nationally validated set of learning outcomes and competencies developed by executives in the nonprofit sector, which have achieved proven results. We are teaching the skills that employers want and the Alliance provides resources to Certified Nonprofit Professionals across their entire careers. The CNP provides knowledge and practical experience that empowers students to find a job that matters, which is aligned with Indiana State's focus on post-graduation job acquisition.

Become a Certified Nonprofit Professional

Indiana State University students can become a CNP by completing the Nonprofit Leadership minor.

Students pursuing a minor, through coursework requirements, complete all four Core Requirements mandated by the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance:

  • Complete nonprofit courses for minor
  • Demonstrate leadership in the Nonprofit Leadership Student Association (completed in RCSM-150, RCSM-310, RCSM-410, & RCSM-462)
  • Participate in the Alliance Management Institute – National Conference (completed in RCSM-462)
  • Complete a 3-credit hour, 300 contact hour internship in a nonprofit organization (completed in RCSM-493 or major related internship)

The Nonprofit Leadership minor counts for the University Honors Leadership and Civic Engagement Concentration.

Indiana State's certification program has been in place since 2001 and has been recognized nationally. It received the 2013 Sprint Campus Partner of the Year Award as the top nonprofit leadership and management academic program in the country and the 2009 Outstanding Student Recruitment Benchmark Award from the national office. In 2015, the Wabash Valley District, Crossroads of America Council, Boy Scouts of America was recognized as the Alliance's National Nonprofit Partner of the Year because of its strategic partnership with Indiana State University. 

The Indiana State University program follows the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Board of Directors Policy on Discrimination

Know Your Sector Nonprofit Careers
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How to Join to Become a CNP & Participation Fees

As with any change in a student's course of study, students wanting to earn the CNP should first meet with his or her assigned academic advisor and work with him or her to add the Nonprofit Leadership minor on MySam.

The student’s academic advisor should update the student's MySam Plan and direct the student to take RCSM-150: Introduction to Nonprofit Leadership and Management in the upcoming fall semester.  RCSM-150 is a Fall Semester Only course.  Only one section of the course is offered each fall semester.  It is critical to take RCSM-150 as soon as possible.

  • Then, students must join the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance (national office) by creating an NLA Online Profile and submitting a $25.00 payment for the national enrollment fee via credit/debit card.
  • Upon completion of the ISU Nonprofit Leadership minor, students must submit a $35.00 certification processing fee to the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance national office. 
  • The other regular expense to completing the CNP is the travel expense and registration fee for the Alliance Management Institute (national conference attendance requirement), which can range from $375.00 to $1,500.00. 
  • Students have opportunities and are encouraged to practice their financial resource development (i.e., fundraising) skills to reduce or eliminate the cost of conference attendance.
  • Next, students need to log-in to their MyISU portal and access the OrgSync/Treehouse app to join the Nonprofit Leadership Student Association & the Association of Fundraising Professionals Collegiate Chapter.
  • Students must then create a Twitter account and follow:
  • Students must also create a Facebook account and like:
  • Finally, students must create a LinkedIn account and an Asana account

What Nonprofit Leadership Students Do

Enjoy learning about the work and success of our nonprofit leadership students through community engagement, service-learning, and professional development:

Certified to Change the World: State’s Nonprofit Leadership Program Evolving 
Indiana State Named Nonprofit Leadership Campus of the Year 

If you or your Academic Advisor have questions regarding the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Certificate Program's requirements, joining processes and national fee payment, internship planning and co-approval, Honors Program credit, etc., please contact:

Contact Us

Dr. Nathan A. Schaumleffel
Email Dr. Schaumleffel
Associate Professor & Campus/Executive Director
Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Certification Program
Department of Kinesiology, Recreation, & Sport
Health & Human Services Building (Arena) A-243
812.237.2189 Google Map: Location of the Department of Kinesiology, Recreation, and Sport

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