Oct 01, 2022  
2019-2020 Graduate Catalog 
2019-2020 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Master of Nonprofit Leadership

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Admission Requirements

  • Completed Application for Graduate Admission and a nonrefundable $55 application fee (waived for Seattle University alumni).
  • Evidence of a four-year equivalent bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution.
  • Minimum grade point average of 3.00 (GPA) calculated from official transcripts of all post-secondary educational institutions attended in last 90 quarter/60 semester credits of the bachelor's degree, including any transfer credit earned during this time, and any post-baccalaureate course work. In special cases, those with a GPA less than a 3.00 will be admitted on a probationary basis. Applicants earning a bachelor's degree from a non-graded institution must submit official GRE scores in lieu of GPA.
  • Current résumé reflecting one year of relevant professional experience in a nonprofit organization preferred.
  • Two-page statement answering the following questions: (1) Describe your professional and personal goals, and explain how you expect your education with the Master of Nonprofit Leadership program to further those goals. (2) What questions do you have about nonprofit leadership, and how will your education with the Master of Nonprofit Leadership program assist you to address those questions? (https://www.seattleu.edu/artsci/nonprofit-graduate/mnpl/apply/)
  • Two letter of recommendation from people who can speak to the applicant's professional and/or academic abilities, and to their potential for leadership in the non-profit sector are required.
  • If English is not the applicant's native language, official English proficiency scores meeting the university's entrance requirements must be submitted. See Seattle University's English Proficiency Admission Policy 2008-01 for details.

Program Candidates 

  • A class of up to 25 students is admitted each year.
  • Students attend their core courses in a cohort in order to provide more opportunities to learn from each other.
  • Students take elective courses outside of the cohort so that so they may benefit from a wider diversity of perspectives and experiences.

Degree Requirements:

The MNPL program requires 45 credits taught through 15 courses offered over 18 to 22 months. Students are required to take 39 core credits and 6 elective credits. The final required course, NPLR 5900 , allows each student to pursue in-depth research on a subject of personal interest. Electives and/or transferred credits may be substituted for core classes if approved via petition by the department and dean.


The practicum integrates and applies the nonprofit leadership theories being learned in the course work with the realities of the workplace. This practicum is required of all students, although students with significant nonprofit professional experience can apply for a waiver.  The experience provides students the opportunity to apply their knowledge within Puget Sound nonprofit organizations.

Typical Program of Study

We will offer the majority of the core classes in the first year, and a combination of core and electives during the second year. The program schedule below outlines the course offerings for the first and second year. Students may choose to accelerate their progress through the curriculum by adding electives during the first year of study.

Electives, 6 credits, choose from:

Minimum credits required for degree: (45)