Master's Concentration

Executive Leadership and Governance

Leading a nonprofit or nongovernmental organization of any size requires senior leaders to examine individual and organizational practices and behaviors. In the Executive Leadership and Governance master’s degree concentration, you'll develop a broad spectrum of tools in leadership, change management, and diversity, equity, and inclusion to better navigate organizational changes and challenges. Enhance your knowledge in board and senior-team leadership, value-centered leadership, strategic direction and planning, and organization culture development.

This program follows the graduate guidelines of the Nonprofit Academic Centers Council (NACC).

Summmer 2023 Course Offering

Check out our experiential learning course Development in Action: An Immersive Leadership Experience offered this summer at the Kennedy Mountain Campus.

Executive Leadership and Governance image

At a Glance

Classes Begin
June 12
Evening or Online
Term Length
10 Weeks
Master's Degree
As few as 18 months
U.S. News Best Colleges
Top-Ranked University

U.S. News & World Report Rankings
Tracy Joosten
Talk to an Enrollment Manager

Tracy Joosten

Free Application

University College is committed to educational access, and given the difficult circumstances currently impacting millions of people, we are waiving application fees.

Skills You'll Learn

Craft leadership development plans using strengths, skills, and behaviors

Evaluate effective leadership to positively impact organizational health and impact

Evaluate organizational capacity, operations, governance, and program implementation


Master of Science in Nonprofit Leadership with a concentration in Executive Leadership and Governance requires completion of 48 credit hours (12 courses).

All students are required to complete a zero-credit Student Success Course.

Core Courses
Concentration Courses
Elective Courses

Sample Schedule

Plan out your schedule and determine your preferred timeline for completing your master's degree—finish in as few as 18 months or take up to five years.

Time to Completion
Year 1 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4
Classes 2 2 2 2
Year 2 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4
Classes 2 2 0 0
Year 1 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4
Classes 1 2 1 2
Year 2 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4
Classes 1 2 1 2

Interested in a graduate certificate?

Explore our four and six course graduate certificates in Executive Leadership and Governance.

Take a Course Before You Apply

We know how important it is to get started when you're ready and that's why you can enroll in a course before you officially apply.

Career Outcomes

Predicted outcomes for graduates of Executive Leadership and Governance

According to the Johns Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies, nonprofits are creating jobs three times faster than for-profits and is the third largest industry in the U.S.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics found there were nearly 12.3 million jobs in the nonprofit sector, which amounts to 10.2% of employment in the United States. The Colorado Nonprofit Economic Impact study found that nonprofits make 11.3% of the states GDP and accounts for over 333,000 jobs.

Nonprofit leaders are essential to community decision making and will help impact the local economy and workforce.

Job Titles

Nonprofit President
Chief Financial Officer
Chief Operating Officer
Executive Director
Director of Membership
Associate Director

Nonprofit Director Salary: National Average


Get Ahead with Career Services

One-on-one career coaching and mock interviews

Job database dedicated to DU students and alumni

Résumé and cover letter guidance

Hear from Our Students

Theme: Job Satisfaction
Flexible Online Classes

Flexible Online Classes

We understand the demands of balancing work, friends and family, and school can be challenging. That's why at University College, you can complete your program entirely online. Our online learning platform makes it easy to work anywhere at any time.

Featured Instructors

Accreditation & Associations

Higher Learning Commission logo
Higher Learning Commission

University College programs maintain the highest level of accreditation offered by The Higher Learning Commission, one of the regional accrediting bodies recognized by the federal government. The University of Denver and all of its academic programs are regionally accredited by this commission, and regional accreditation is the highest standard for universities in the United States.

Colorado Nonprofit Association
Colorado Nonprofit Association

The University of Denver's Nonprofit Leadership program through University College is proud to be a sponsor of the Colorado Nonprofit Association, a valued community partnership for more than a decade.

Nonprofit Academic Centers Council
Nonprofit Academic Centers Council

The Nonprofit Leadership program at DU's University College is a proud member of several leading nonprofit associations, including the Nonprofit Academic Centers Council (NACC).

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