The Heller MBA in Nonprofit Management

The Heller School for Social Policy and Management at Brandeis University

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The Heller MBA in Nonprofit Management

The Heller MBA in Nonprofit Management

Providing the knowledge and skills to excel in nonprofit leadership and healthcare management

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The MBA in Nonprofit Management is delivered by a graduate school devoted to the advancement of social justice. You’ll work closely with faculty, researchers and students who share your values, and develop the skills and understanding to effect change on a local, national and global scale.

Prepare to drive positive change as the leader of a mission-driven organization, business unit or government agency. Develop the capacity to work effectively across the nonprofit, private and public arenas. Learn about the complex factors that contribute to societal, political, economic and environmental problems – and the strategic leadership and management skills to address them. An MBA in Nonprofit Management from the Heller School will prepare you to effect meaningful, sustainable change in the areas you care about most.

Aspen Institute - Corporate KnightsRanked 5th globally by two independent agencies on the degree to which social, ethical, and environmental topics are integrated into the MBA curriculum

A curriculum grounded in social change

Our accelerated, 16-month curriculum condenses two years of study into four consecutive, intense semesters – ideal for people eager to return to the workplace and quickly put their new skills into action. The curriculum includes:

  • Traditional MBA courses that will provide you with essential management skills, including budgeting, discounted cash flow analysis, effective mobilization of diverse groups, business plan development, communication and collaboration, workplace operations assessment and financial statement analysis.
  • Innovative social change courses that will prepare you to advance your career along with your ideals, such as Stuart Altman’s Issues in National Health Policy, and Carole Carlson’s Social Entrepreneurship, or you can study legal issues and their impact on social justice with Anita Hill.

Exceptional experiential learning opportunities

Students have the opportunity to engage in a robust experiential learning program that includes:

  • A team consulting engagement – Required of all Heller MBA students, this four-month consulting engagement is an opportunity to apply your analytical and problem-solving skills to help an organization more effectively pursue its social mission.
  • Practicing Philanthropy – In this course, students have the chance to learn about the inner workings of a philanthropic foundation. They process real grant proposals, visit potential recipient sites, and actually award $10,000 to the organization of their choice.
  • Internships - These hands-on experiences provide an opportunity for MBA students, working under the supervision of a faculty member, to apply the principles and frameworks from their MBA curriculum to a client organization seeking help with a management-related challenge.
  • Heller MBA Board Fellows program - MBA students take one-year non-voting positions on nonprofit boards of directors, learning firsthand about how leaders make decisions from the inside and contributing their own innovative ideas.
  • Student-run projects – We offer a student-run community bank of consulting projects where students can partner with organizations on short-term projects.

An expert, engaged community

As an MBA in Nonprofit Management student, you’ll study with faculty on the forefront of change in areas from healthcare to international development, and connect with researchers in our world-class research institutes engaged in pioneering scholarship and analysis. Just as important, your globally diverse classmates will offer a world of perspectives from their work in such organizations as the Zimbabwe Ministry of Health and Child Welfare, Doctors without Borders, Massachusetts General Hospital, Teach for America, ActionAid International, the World Bank, the Women's Lunch Place, World Health Organization, AmeriCorps, World Vision, Oxfam, the Peace Corps, and Save the Children.

Superior career preparation

The Heller MBA Program boasts a 90% placement rate for December, 2014 grads after three months. The Heller Career Development Center supports students even before they arrive on campus through the Summer Career Academy, an optional distance summer program for incoming students.  The program lasts eight weeks and consists of seven modules. The program rationale is to have incoming students begin exploring their career options early. Students can expect to undergo a quality career assessment, receive training on our on-line recruiting system, create a Heller Resume and have it reviewed, review employment reports, join relevant LinkedIn groups and career discussions; in short, to be on top of their career game upon arrival at Heller.

Students are required to take a professional development course, Launching Your Mission Driven Management Career, which begins during orientation and spans the duration of the MBA program. Cited as an innovative approach by the Aspen Institute, this series of workshops addresses critical skills such as creating a brand, salary negotiation, professional networking and beyond.

Start a social enterprise that improves the economic prosperity of women living in conflict areas throughout the world. Develop strategic initiatives for a hospital or an international humanitarian agency. Work as a country director for the Department of Defense, analyze environmental policy at a U.S. government agency or work as a business analyst for a major healthcare provider. When you earn an MBA in Nonprofit Management from the Heller School, you join an impressive network of alumni working in a wide variety of careers to improve the lives and well-being of people throughout the world.

Visit Heller

Visit Heller

MBA Visit Days are a great way to experience the Heller community. Observe a class, meet with an admissions staff member, and discuss the MBA program in greater detail with faculty and current students. To register, click the date you wish to visit and sign up:

If you're unable to visit campus, we encourage you to engage with us online through one of our upcoming MBA Webinars:

MBA Nonprofit Management

MBA Nonprofit Management

An AACSB-accredited program delivered by the Heller School, a world-class institution rated among the top 10 schools of social policy.

A faculty on the forefront of change

A faculty on the forefront of change

The Heller School faculty comprises world-renowned experts on topics ranging from sustainable development to child services, healthcare and organizational leadership. Take a national health policy class taught by Stuart Altman, recognized as one of the 100 Most Powerful People in Health Care and an advisor to both the Obama and Clinton administrations, or study race and gender equality with legal expert Anita Hill. Learn about Relational Coordination, Jody Hoffer Gittell’s leading edge theory of organizational collaboration, and get involved with the Relational Coordination Research Collaborative. Take a course with Susan Curnan, a White House domestic policy advisor on at-risk youth and head of the Center for Youth and Communities at Heller.
Heller Faculty
Larry Simon Vertical Thumbnail

Laurence Simon

Professor of International Development

Professor Laurence Simon's career in world development spans 40 years and has taken him from hands-on antipoverty work in Sri Lanka to the halls of power and influence. Friends and colleagues recently lauded Simon’s dedication over the decades, including many who thanked Simon for his selfless mentoring.more

Thomas Shapiro

Pokross Professor of Law and Social Policy and Director, Institute on Assets and Social Policy

"Even when African-Americans do everything right -- get an education and work hard at well-paying jobs -- they cannot achieve the wealth of their white peers in the workforce, and that translates into very different life chances."more

Susan Parish

Nancy Lurie Marks Professor of Disability Policy, Director, Lurie Institute for Disability Policy, and Associate Dean, Research

"What the country needs is a revolution in how we structure disability policy."more

A.K. Nandakumar

Professor of the Practice; Director, PhD Program; Director, Institute for Global Health and Development

"The U.S. actually spends a very small proportion of its GDP on international assistance. Even so, the U.S. is the single largest financier of donor-to-global health in the world. I think this aid has been instrumental in dealing with major global health problems, such as maternal/infant mortality and AIDS, over time."more

Walter Leutz

Associate Professor and Associate Dean for Academic Personnel

"Elders need help with both their everyday living and their health care, but the two systems are very separate." more

Alain Lempereur

Alan B. Slifka Professor of Coexistence and Conflict Resolution

"My hope is to strengthen the peace profession, to provide practitioners with the knowledge and tools for effective conflict analysis and intervention."more

Peter Kreiner

Scientist and Principal Investigator, Prescription Monitoring Program Training and Technical Assistance Center

Prescription drug abuse is rising at alarming rates. To combat the problem, prescription monitoring programs are becoming more sophisticated, aiming to put the brakes on abusers and, in some cases, incorporate rehabilitation programs. Scientist Peter Kreiner explains how the programs work and what they hope to accomplish.more

Nina Kammerer

Senior Lecturer

"Across years, disciplines, and continents, I have been involved in research that touches on all the concentrations in the PhD program."more

Constance Horgan

Professor and Director, Institute for Behavioral Health

"Health plan decisions can dramatically affect the lives of people with substance abuse and mental health conditions."more

Anita Hill

Professor of Social Policy, Law, and Women's Studies

"I don't believe that you can have equality without first securing that place where you can live out your dreams and all the opportunities the country has to offer."more

Ricardo Godoy

Professor of International Development

"I fell in love with the Tsimane because they are sweet and peaceful. When you live in a small-scale society that practices cross-cousin marriage, the society ends up being a huge extended family and you have to learn how to manage your anger and get along."more

Jody Hoffer Gittell

Professor and Executive Director, Relational Coordination Research Collaborative

"Work is most effectively coordinated through relationships of shared goals, shared knowledge and mutual respect."more

Deborah Garnick


"With more people covered by health insurance, it is imperative to measure the quality of care people receive, to create incentives for providing good care, and to implement programs focused on quality improvement."more

Angela Duger

Adjunct Lecturer

"The riots in Bolivia were so vocal and widely publicized that I started asking questions: How did I feel about what was going on? What was my responsibility to help?"more

Michael Doonan

Associate Professor and Director of the Master’s in Public Policy Program (MPP); Executive Director of the Massachusetts Health Policy Forum; Director of the Council for Health Care Economics and Policy

"My interests are at the intersection between political science and health services research."more

Diana Bowser

Scientist, Lecturer and Director, MS Program in Global Health Policy and Management

“One of the aspects of directing Heller’s MS Program that I truly enjoy is the interaction with students. I love to hear what they like about the program and what they think is important for their careers and I enjoy tailoring the curriculum to meet the students’ changing needs.”more

Janet Boguslaw

Scientist and Senior Lecturer; Associate Director, Master of Public Policy Program; Associate Director, Institute on Assets and Social Policy

"My work focuses on driving policy and practice to advance long-term economic opportunity."more

Joseph Assan

Assistant Professor

"Development can be a complicated field. It's important for students to understand the bigger picture, and how to fit their goals into that picture."more

Stuart Altman

Sol C. Chaikin Professor of National Health Policy

"What [my] book intends to do is to trace the history of U.S. attempts to create universal coverage, going back to Teddy Roosevelt." more

Knowledge Advancing Social Justice

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