Upcoming Training

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Nonprofit Institute
College of Southern Maryland
PO Box 910
La Plata, MD 20646-0910
Fax: 301-934-7704

Charles County
Cara Fogarty

Michelle Sullivan

St. Mary's County
Harriet Yaffe

NPI Training

Upcoming Training:

Training Overview


In the nonprofit realm, leadership by definition resides with the board of directors, which bears legal governing authority. The elected president or board chair holds the primary leadership position. Where applicable, the leadership role also applies to the chief executive officer, who besides managing operations from day to day is often the organization’s public face. The ability to lead can also affect the performance of committees and task forces.

The theory and practice of leadership have been subjected to much analysis, but most people would probably say that they know leadership when they see it and know when it is absent. For those who have not sought a leadership post but get thrust into one, skill development can be a particular challenge. The acquisition of leadership skills can take time and require practice.  Leadership has a direct influence on the nonprofit’s character and its future.  

The NPI Leadership courses address such topics as:  Examining the demands of leadership as it applies to the nonprofit sector; Distinguishing between “good” leadership and “bad”; Steps to cultivating and sustaining effective leadership; Contrasting leadership roles: president v. executive director; Identifying uses of and need for leadership coaching or mentoring; The critical importance of succession planning; The leader’s responsibility concerning conflict resolution and mediation; Making the most of the president’s term of office; and the executive director’s dual role: manager and leader.

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Marketing increases the ability for nonprofit organizations to deliver a clear message consistent with the mission about its services to a particular audience or stakeholder.  Solid marketing knowledge strengthens stakeholder relationships while improving the nonprofit’s bottom line.  Courses at NPI are designed specifically for nonprofits to build, expand, and maximize marketing skills.  Curriculum focuses on key marketing concepts and best practices.   Marketing has four basic components: analysis of the environment, strategy, implementation, and assessment.

The objective of each course is to provide a practical, hands-on understanding of the marketing process so that nonprofit staff can increase visibility of an organization’s mission. Participants will be able to formulate a plan of action while learning from marketing experts. 

The NPI Marketing courses address such topics as:  Customer Relationship Management (CRM); Search Engine Optimization (SEO); Strategic Marketing; Marketing Methods & Effectiveness; Customer & Marketing Analysis; Marketing Tools; Best Practices in Nonprofit Marketing; and Building Your Brand.

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Fundraising is an essential planning strategy for nonprofit organizations.  Although the terms “fundraising” and “development” are often used interchangeably, they refer to the charitable support provided through individual and business contributions; foundation, corporate grants and government grants; combined campaigns; and occasionally other nonprofits. It is commonly accepted that a healthy development program is based on a diversity of sources.  Fundraising approaches cover a broad spectrum including revenue through the sale of goods or services and function within a framework of federal, state and local regulations designed to promote transparency and accountability.

The fundraising program forms a key element in the organization’s strategic plan. Thanks to increasing competition for dollars, its effectiveness often depends on the presence of an active marketing effort. For many organizations, all the fundraising activities are carried out by volunteers; other groups are able to assign such work to paid staff or a professional development director.

The NPI Fundraising courses address such topics as:  Introduction to fundraising; Steps in building an effective fundraising program; The board’s role in planning and supporting the fundraising program; Strengthening the partnership between fundraising and marketing; Strategies to assure special event success; Attracting a growing circle of individual givers; The elements of a major gift program; Keys to identifying grant sources and writing successful grant proposals; Building a lasting legacy through planned giving; The how-to’s and benefits of online giving; The art of acknowledging gifts and thanking donors; Overview of the key regulations pertaining to fundraising; and Using volunteers for a robust fundraising effort.

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The management of an organization is driven by the mission and focuses on coordinating the efforts of people to accomplish goals and objectives by using available resources efficiently and effectively.  Management must incorporate innovation, creativity, and encourage motivation to ensure an organization runs in a positive, productive, and orderly manner.  Management requires planning, organizing, staffing, and leading or directing, and most importantly, encouraging staff and volunteers to continue to focus on the mission and moving forward.

The NPI Management courses address such topics as: Moving from Peer to Supervisor; Communication Skills for Supervisors; Delegation Skills for Supervisors; Giving Feedback; Team Building; Managing Change; Problem Solving and Decision Making; Effective Meeting Skills; Time Management; Stress Management; Financial Management for nonprofit organizations; Managing Risk; Recruiting and Managing Volunteers; Developing a staff training program; and Developing a membership program.

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Strategic Planning

Strategic planning is an organization’s process of defining its priorities and direction, establishing goals, and aligning its resources toward the accomplishment of these goals. This process should lead to the development of an implementation plan that includes periodic evaluation of progress and an ongoing effort to determine if the current strategies continue to be viable.

The senior leadership of an organization is generally tasked with guiding this effort and developing the implementation plan, with input from staff, volunteers, and stakeholders.   Some organizations choose to contract with experienced planners to help them with this process.   Generally, there are four key elements involved in the strategic planning process:  assessing the organization’s strengths and weaknesses, determining the personal values of leadership and management, scanning industry opportunities and threats, and understanding broader societal expectations.  The course offerings focus on various tools and activities that will assist you in your Strategic Planning efforts.

The NPI Strategic Planning courses address such topics as:  SWOT Analysis Scenario Planning; Environmental Scans; Self-Assessment; and On-going evaluation methods.

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Online Training

Through Continuing Education, we offer several courses on a regular basis to nonprofits. These are online courses offered through Ed2Go. The following classes are available:

A to Z Grant Writing -  BUS-5330 (2.40 CEUs)

A to Z Grant Writing is an invigorating and informative course specially created for executive directors, organizers, board members, community volunteers, development officers, and individuals who want to learn a 'bird's eye' view of the grant writing process. Discover how to research and develop mutually beneficial relationships with potential funding sources, organize a grant writing campaign and keep track of all funding sources, requests and donations, prepare complete proposal packages, and submit one hundred proposals a year in ten hours a week. More information and registration >>

Nonprofit Fundraising - BUS-8420 (2.40 CEUs)

First, you'll identify the skills you'll need to become a successful fundraiser. Next, you'll discover where the best corporate and foundation fundraising jobs are and how to apply for them. After that, you'll delve into different types of fundraising activities, exploring everything from annual and special funds to corporate and foundation relations, major gifts, and planned giving. And finally, you'll see how fundraising software can make your efforts far more effective. By the end of the course, you'll have a wealth of new ideas for fundraising. More information and registration >>

Additionally, the Foundation Center offers free online training courses:

Introduction to Proposal Writing and Introduction to Finding Grants

Online and self-directed, these Foundation Center courses put you in charge of your own learning — perfect if you can’t get to one of our in-person sessions or live webinars. Courses feature rich multimedia content, interactive quiz questions, and useful tips to help you succeed. Upon finishing a course you have the option to print a certificate of completion. (Other courses are available for a fee.)

Webinars | Workshops | More Opportunities

Webinars: Leverage your Volunteer Program with Volunteer Maryland

Volunteer Maryland and its partners mobilize community volunteers to address critical community needs. Discover how a strategic partnership with Volunteer Maryland can strengthen your volunteer program and increase community engagement. Volunteer Maryland places AmeriCorps Members who serve as Volunteer Coordinators full time for 11 months.

Volunteer Maryland is hosting webinars and one-hour information sessions throughout Maryland. Discover the opportunity of being a partner organization and leveraging your volunteer program. The Rural Maryland Council will discuss its grant funding to help support this partnership.

Learn more >>

Questions? Contact Outreach Manager Nathan Cabrera: