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institute participants
2007-2008 Nonprofit Management Program participants

UTSA summer institute trains nonprofit leaders

By Francesca Rattray
Senior Program Coordinator, Nonprofit Management Program

(July 9, 2008)--UTSA's Nonprofit Management Program (UNP) will host the Summer Institute on Leadership and Stewardship (SILS) on Aug. 7 and 9 to help future nonprofit organization leaders expand their skills. The two-day workshop will cover trends and issues in the nonprofit sector, focusing on leadership skills.

Following SILS, nonprofit management certificate classes meet one day per month, September through April, covering specific competencies each day. Participants in the program earn continuing education units (CEUs) toward certification.

Suzanne Reily attests to the value of the program. She had worked for the Children's Association for Maximum Potential (CAMP), a nonprofit organization dedicated to serving children with special needs and their families, for three years and loved her job. As a CAMP community relations manager, she had developed expertise on the job and from personal knowledge as the mother of a son with autism. With on-the job training and life experiences, she was ready to take her knowledge to the next level.

"I knew that to grow within my organization and in my understanding of my job, I needed an educational foundation," said Reily. "As a mother of two children working full-time, a formal graduate program would not fit into my busy life." Then she learned about UTSA's UNP from her CAMP colleagues, several of whom had graduated from the program. When she realized the course helped increase the expertise of nonprofit professionals, she asked CAMP Executive Director Paul Furikawa if she could be next in line to take the course.

"I had no idea how much I would actually enjoy being in the classroom again, learning about a subject I love," said Reily. "With each week, I was amazed every subject pertained to my job from IT to strategic planning. I use this knowledge weekly, sometimes daily in my position at CAMP."

Reily's experience mirrors that of the more than 200 alumni of UTSA's continuing education nonprofit management certification program, which has developed nonprofit leaders in South Texas for more than 10 years. Working professionals from regional nonprofits have completed the program including participants from CAMP, Catholic Charities, American Red Cross and others from the for-profit sector who serve on boards and as volunteers. The program helps develop expertise in strategic planning, fundraising, financial management, human resources and program evaluation.

"This year's one-day-per month program marks a change over previous years and was designed to draw participants from outside San Antonio, where similar certificate programs are lacking," noted Goutham Menon, director of the UTSA Center for Policy Studies, who oversees the program.

Additionally, the one-day sessions help accommodate demanding schedules of the nonprofit professionals by offering a program that requires only a seven day commitment to complete certification.

The new program format has drawn presenters from the community that bring years of expertise from the field including Palmer Moe, executive director of the Kronkosky Foundation, who will lead a panel discussion on board governance in September. CAMP's Furikawa also will provide presentations on ethics and accountability.

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For more information, visit the NMP Web site or contact Francesca Rattray at (210) 458-2691.

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