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

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

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 91% placement rate for the MBA Class of 2015. 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

We offer a variety of opportunities to connect with us, including Visit Days, Virtual Events, and our annual Fall Open House, all of which enable you to learn about our program offerings and the admissions process. You can also meet us on the road, both in the US and at select international locations. Learn more and register online.

Jeanne Mansfield, MBA/MPP'15, at work at Boston Public Market

Jeanne Mansfield, MBA/MPP'15, at work at Boston Public Market

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Heller student Joshua Cramer-Montes, SID/MBA'16, offers insights on his participation in the recent UN convention on climate change, which he attended in his capacity as a communications and partnerships consultant for the United Nations Development Programme’s Equator Initiative. 

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When dual degree candidate Emilia Dunham isn't juggling the demands of the Heller School's MPP and MBA programs, she's managing a professional career at Fenway Health, where she works as the project manager of an NIH-funded research study. With her colleagues at Fenway, Dunham tests whether a group intervention called LifeSkills can empower young transgender women to stop the spread of HIV.
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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.

Knowledge Advancing Social Justice

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