Document Sample
     Syllabus for Fall 07

     Faculty: Pat Libby Main office number (off-campus): (619) 282-8875

                            Campus office location: SOLES, room 265A Campus telephone: (619)

                            Office hours: At mutual convenience. Please call or e-mail for an

     Summary Description: This is a survey course that is intended to prepare students for
     management roles in the nonprofit sector by helping them gain an understanding of America’s
     “nonprofit nation.” As such it will explore the development and nature of the sector, major
     issues it is facing, governance structures of nonprofit organizations, basic management and
     operating strategies. Topics will include: historical perspectives, the legal structure of nonprofits,
     board responsibilities, regulatory reform and accountability measures, the nature of philanthropy,
     human resource management, and advocacy. The course is designed as an interactive learning
     experience that incorporates significant case study and group problem-solving exercises.

     This course is focused on practice. All students must affiliate themselves with at least one
     nonprofit organization they can refer to and work with throughout the semester; students are
     strongly encouraged to work in pairs or teams of three for a single client group.

     Course Objectives:

1.                  To increase understanding of the role of nonprofits in the United States and the
     challenges of nonprofits across different subsectors within the sector.
     1.     To expose students to basic concepts, models and theories of nonprofit management.
     2.     To build analytic skills for assessing the efficacy of existing nonprofit operations.
3.                  To develop the capacity of students to intervene in ways that will strengthen the
            management of nonprofit operations.
     4.     To convince students of the essential role of sound business practices in the operation of
            nonprofit corporations.
     5.     To apply the principles and concepts of learned in the class through both case analysis
            and practical application.
     6.     To better equip the student to integrate his/her personal beliefs and values into the
            operation of nonprofit corporations.

     Required Reading: All students must purchase a classroom reader. THE READER IS
     CLASS EACH WEEK as we will refer to it for in-class exercises. In addition, students are
     required to purchase a subscription to The Chronicle of Philanthropy which we offer at a
discounted rate. The course material assumes you have already read Managing a Nonprofit
Organization in the 21st Century, Wolf, Fireside Press and provides references to the Wolf
material to assist you with a variety of homework assignments.

To purchase your course materials, please visit University Readers at You will create an account and be prompted to choose
your state and institution. Easy-to-follow instructions will lead you through the rest of the
purchasing process. Payment can be made by all major credit cards or electronic check. Your
order is then processed and shipped out to you swiftly (orders are typically processed within 24
hours and often same day). Shipping time will depend on the selected shipping method. If
available for your course, you will also be given instructions on how to download a FREE PDF
download or a Full Digital Pack so you can get started on your required readings right away. If
you have any difficulties, please e-mail or call 800.200.3908.

In addition, when noted, you will be required to access reading material through the Copley
Library electronic reserves. To get there:

•      Go to
•      Click on E-Reserves
•      In the Library Services section, click on ”E-Reserves”
•      Click on “Electronic Reserves and Course Materials”
•      Using the pull down menu, choose the department or the last name of the faculty and
       click on “go”
•      Click on the course you are looking for
•      Enter the password and click on “accept”
•      Then, click on any of the titles of the documents and it will open the document.

Program Length: 15 interactive classes of approximately 3 hours in length meeting Monday
evenings from 6:00pm - 9:00pm.

Required Assignments/ Grading Criteria:

Please submit all papers double-spaced and refer to APA (American Psychological Association)
guidelines when citing authors or other references in your papers. For a brief, easy-to-understand
reference guide on how to use APA, go to:

•      Weekly Homework Assignments.                                                       50%

Several short written exercises will be assigned throughout the semester (due weeks 2, 3, 4, 7, 8
and 11). The reason these assignments are brief is to surface your best strategic thinking. Most
assignment requests are for 4 pages; you may write more if you choose but do not exceed 5 pages
in total or points will be taken off. When writing your assignments, please reference the
materials from your reader and any other appropriate texts (such as Wolf) along with your own
conclusions. It is extremely important that each assignment be handed in on the following
week (unless otherwise noted) as we will often debrief that assignment in the class that
follows. Late assignments will be marked off one letter grade for each week they are late.

•      Applied Project Assignment                                                             40%

The major assignment for this course – the Ethics and Accountability Analysis or Governance
Project (choose one or the other) – is to be done in pairs or three person teams on behalf of a
“client” nonprofit organization. Please refer to the guideline for working with consultants in the
introductory portion of your reader to familiarize yourself with the role you will be taking on
with regard to this project.

To assure accountability, after the project is submitted students will be asked to fill out a
confidential form that rates, on a scale of 100 points, the degree to which each team member
participated in carrying out the assigned work (for example, if you and another student put in an
equal amount of work, you would rate your respective contributions 50/50). These ranking
sheets play a role in determining your grade; students who do not participate fully in the work of
their team will be marked down accordingly.


•      Ethics and Accountability Audit

Read through the three sets of ethics and accountability guidelines in your reader. Choose one
(or select another from the list that has been provided, or, find one on your own), for purposes of
conducting an ethics and accountability audit of a local nonprofit corporation that has a budget of
at least $250,000. Keep in mind that in order for this project to be successful, your client
organization must be willing to be completely transparent with information. Your task is to write
a report that answers the following questions:

a) Why you have selected that particular assessment tool versus the others that are available to
b) What strategies have you used to ascertain whether or not your client organization is in
compliance with the ethics and accountability standards outlined in that tool?
c) What steps would you recommend for bringing this organization into compliance should you
find compliance gaps? Note: it is important to be specific – if a client lacks a particular policy, it
is up to you to provide sample policy documents or references that tell the client how to fulfill
the requirement that is lacking or inadequate.
d) Do you believe this set of assessment measures are valid for ascertaining the ethics and
accountability of a nonprofit corporation?

Your findings should be presented in a document that has been signed off by a chief executive of
your client organization. In addition, each student must submit a 2 page narrative/reflection piece
describing the process you undertook in the course of creating this product. Talk about the ways
in which your practice and leadership skills improved during the course of this assignment.
What challenges did you face? If applicable, include team-building, negotiation or coalition
building experiences. The assignment is due December 17th. NO LATE PAPERS WILL BE
•      Governance Project:

Students will be asked to identify a local nonprofit in need of a new or revised version of one of
the following documents:

•      Personnel Policy Manual
•      Personnel Evaluation Form/Procedures
•      By-laws
•      Volunteer Manual
•      Alternatively, students may propose to work on an alternative type of governance
       document, however, the project must be approved in advance by the professor.

Each team will work with the designated nonprofit in the role of consultant, to accomplish the
stated goal (i.e., the creation or revision of said governance document), and outline a set of
procedures for how the document is to be used (for example, if it is part of an orientation process,
what does that process look like?).

This presentation of this project should have three components: 1) demonstrated best practice
research – a comparison of other similar documents and reference materials you have used in the
process of creating your document 2) if a previous document exists, an annotated explanation of
the changes you are suggesting. If a previous document does not exist, an explanation as to why
the agency chose to adopt the policies it did. 3) a 2 page narrative/reflection piece (done
separately by each participating student) describing the process you undertook in the course of
creating this product. Talk about the ways in which your practice and leadership skills improved
during the course of this assignment. What challenges did you face? If applicable, include team-
building, negotiation or coalition building experiences. This project is due December 17th. NO

•      Class participation                                                          10%

Being prompt, attending class, and actively participating in class discussion is a course
requirement. Un-excused absences from class are not acceptable and will have an adverse affect
on your grade. If you must miss a class, please contact one of your cohorts and ask him/her to
tape record the class and/or provide you with notes on the material.

In addition, each student will be asked to do a 15 minute (time-limited) presentation with his/her
team on your applied project. These presentations will take place during the last two weeks of

Academic Integrity

The code of academic integrity is not just rhetoric; forms of academic dishonesty, including but
not limited to cheating, plagiarism, fabrication, or facilitating academic dishonesty, will not be
tolerated in this class and may result in suspension or expulsion from the university.

To summarize, anything you hand in to me must be written in your own words, exemplifying
your own thoughts and ideas, and you must source any references you used in completing your
work using the APA format.

Although you are encouraged to work and learn collaboratively, both within and outside of class,
the work you submit to me should reflect your own thoughts and ideas, and it must be expressed
in your own words unless you cite whose words you are using. If you are unsure of what this
means, please check with me before completing an assignment.

A Note for students with Disabilities
Students with disabilities who believe that they may need accommodations in the class are
encouraged to contact Disability Services in Serra 300 (tel. 260-4655) as soon as possible to
better ensure that such accommodations are implemented in a timely fashion.

Note: Unless otherwise noted, the homework assignment that appears at the end of each week is
what you are asked to do in preparation for the following week.

Prior to week 1: Read the materials in the introductory section of your reader and the Libby,
Schwinn, and Urban Institute materials contained in the week one section of your reader. Also,
go to: www.sandiego/edu/npresearch,scroll down and read the Spotlight on San Diego’s Third
Sector Report. Come prepared to share your observations on all of this material.

Week 1/Sept. 10th: About Nonprofits in America

As Shakespeare said, “What's in a name? That which we call a rose By any other name would
smell as sweet." Whether you call it the nonprofit sector, nongovernmental sector, third sector,
or civil society there are ways to define the unique elements of nonprofitness. Today we’ll begin
with an introduction to the sector by looking at its scope and size, the historical and socio-
economic contexts of nonprofits in America, and at characteristics that differentiate nonprofits
from other entities.

Homework for next week (3 assignments):

1) Go to E-res (electronic reserves) and read the following:

•      Renz, D. (Summer 2005) Funding sources and influence: Assessing the tradeoffs. In The
       Nonprofit Quarterly
•      McCambridge, R., Salamon, L., (Spring 2003) In but not Of the Market. In The Nonprofit
2) Write a 4 page paper explaining the basic premise of the McCambridge/Salamon article and
giving me your thoughts on it – do you agree with the paradigm they put forth? How does what
they posit dovetail or not with the observations made by Renz in Funding sources and influence
and Husock in Nonprofit and for-profit.

3) Read the CBIZ/Mayer Hoffman McCann P.C. article, Setting up non-profit in California in the
Week 2 reader section.

Week 2/Sept. 17th: How By-laws Can Make or Break Your Organization

Ah, by-laws. Those pesky documents we ask lawyers to draft in order to get our tax-exempt
status. There they lie like the Titanic at the bottom of a murky ocean, until a crisis arises that
forces us to look at what and how we’re actually set up to do business. Ideally by-laws should
reflect both best practices and the values of our organization. Today we’ll begin by taking a look
at the concept of mission and then poke sticks at different governance models and how they
effect the oversight of nonprofit organizations.

Homework (3 assignments):

1) Read all of the articles in week two of your reader concerning the board battle with the Sierra
Club and write a 4 page paper on your opinion of whether the Sierra Club should change its by-
laws to avoid this type of conflict in the future. If you believe the group should make changes,
what would you recommend? If they shouldn’t, why not?

2) Review and critique the mission statement of your own organization or another nonprofit.
Does the mission capture the spirit and intent of the organization? Does it convey what it needs
to according to the guidelines we’ve discussed in class? If so, please tell me why you think it
does. If not, take a crack at drafting one or more alternative mission statements. Referring to
chapter 1 in the Wolf book may help you with this assignment.

3) In your week three reader, read all three Strom articles concerning the A.C.L.U. and come
prepared to discuss them in class.

Week 3/Sept. 24th: Boards: Guardians of Governance

Commenting on his book, The Resilient Sector: The State of Nonprofit America, Lester Salamon
wrote “American nonprofit organizations have exhibited enormous resilience in the face of an
extraordinary array of financial, competitive, accountability, and legitimacy challenges over the
past two decades. But the steps they have taken, while allowing them to survive and even to
thrive, pose risks to the very qualities that make these organizations so valuable.” As stewards
of nonprofits, board members are on the front lines of this constantly changing landscape. All of
which leads us to ask – what is the role of the nonprofit board in leading and managing third
sector organizations? What is the proper balance between board and staff leadership? Are the
accountability pressures – both external and self-imposed – appropriate or excessive? What’s a
responsible nonprofit do? Today we will look at basic and not so basic board governance

Homework (2 assignments):

1) Read Week 3 reader articles: Perry, S. (2007). Smithsonian takes steps to clean up governance
after a scathing review, along with Jansen, P. & Kilpatrik A. (2004) The dynamic nonprofit
board. In McKinsey Quarterly, and Klausner, N., Small J., Failing to govern? In Stanford Social
Innovation Review, and write a 4-5 page paper addressing your thoughts on the paradigms
proposed in “Dynamic” and “Failing.” What are your arguments for and against the proposals
put forth? Do you believe the problems that befell the Smithsonian could have been avoided if
the board had used the oversight model presented in either “Dynamic” or “Failing”?

2) Read through the articles in week 4 of your reader until you come to “Building Better
Foundations” (you can read that and the remainder of this chapter later next week) and come
prepared to ask questions about and discuss the various issues in philanthropy that these
materials raise.

Week 4/Oct. 1st: Issues in Philanthropy

The English novelist Anthony Burgess once said: “We all need money, but there are degrees of
desperation.” One defining feature of the Third Sector is its structural reliance on philanthropy:
unlike the private sector, nonprofits must continually “sing for their supper” regardless of how
effective or widespread their impact. Adding to this challenge is an ever-changing philanthropic
terrain that includes evolving roles for community foundations, venture philanthropy, online
giving, and the proliferation of private-label plans. Today we’ll look at these trends and their
impact on fundraising for nonprofits.

Homework (2 assignments):

1) Complete the reading in week 4 of your reader.
2) Read through chapter 5 of your reader (yes, I know it’s a lot of material but there’s no paper to
write this week and I’m not asking you to memorize what you’ve read). Tackle the reading in
bit-sized chunks (for the Panel on the Nonprofit Sector piece, which is huge, just look at the
major categories that are discussed and then read further if you need more details). Come
prepared in class to talk through the questions I’ve posed below.

Week 5/Oct.8th: Ethics and Accountability

Accountability is a little bit like the word “love” – it means different things to different people
and in different contexts. Yet in the nonprofit world, the weight associated with being
accountable, or being perceived as being accountable, is formidable in light of flagging public
confidence in the sector. Today we’ll take a look at a variety of attempts at self regulation and
ask the questions – what is too much and what is not enough? Are certifying organizations
providing a service to the sector or are they contributing to the public’s skepticism about
nonprofits? Where is the line between ethics and accountability?

Homework (1 assignment):

Read chapter 6 of your reader stopping after the IS 2006 article: Analysis of charitable reforms &
incentives in the pension protection act of 2006.

Week 6/Oct. 15th: The Regulatory Debate, Part II

The proliferation of the sector combined with pubic skepticism about the integrity of nonprofits
has led to an increased push for regulatory reform at both the state and federal level. While there
are voices championing the strong government approach, others worry that excessive regulation
will divert scarce resources from programs to complex compliance measures – including the
costs of regulatory oversight. Still others argue for more definition of the nonprofit classifications
that constitute 501 (c) (3) organizations. Today we’ll explore the many facets of this on-going

Homework (3 assignments):

1) Read the remainder of the articles in your week 6 reader including the following articles on e-

• Cohen, R. (2005). Opportunities lost. In The Nonprofit Quarterly (Regulatory Landscape Issue)
• A survey of proposals for the further federal regulation of nonprofits (2005). In The Nonprofit
Quarterly (Regulatory Landscape Issue)
• Bowman, W., Bies, A. (2005). Can the charitable sector regulate itself? In The Nonprofit
Quarterly (Regulatory Landscape Issue).

2) Write a 4 page paper that addresses one of the following topics:

a) Do you agree or disagree with the regulatory reform proposals put forth by Masoka and Peters
in Point of View? How do they dovetail or differ with those proposed by the editors of Nonprofit
Quarterly in their article entitled: A survey of proposals for the further federal regulation of
nonprofits? What elements aren’t included in the Masoka/Peters framework that you would like
to see added?

b) Kutzin argues for self-regulation and increased enforcement of current regulation whereas
Eisenberg and Stamp argue for new reforms. How do their respective arguments stack up against
those of Cohen, Bowman and Bies? What is your view of self-regulation versus government
regulation? What aspects of nonprofit oversight should be left to the government and which to

c) Should foundations: a) be required to spend 5% or more annually on grants over and above
administrative expenses? b) limit the amount trustees are paid or be forbidden from paying

d) Is the proliferation of private-label funds a positive development for the nonprofit sector?

e) Should foundation and charity endowments be regulated in any way? If so, what do you

3) Go to and read the report: Executive Transition in the San
Diego Nonprofit Sector (it’s a quick read).

Week 7: Fires

Week 8/Oct.29th: Personnel: Common Sense and Legal Strategies for Finding Them,
Hiring Them and Keeping Them.

According to a 2006 study conducted by USD’s Center for Applied Nonprofit Research, 68% of
San Diego’s nonprofit executive directors are considering leaving their jobs within the next 5
years – figures that echo national trends. Finding and keeping good staff is both an art and a
science. Today we’ll look at a range of hiring techniques, personnel policy must-haves and could
haves and discuss the blurry line between responsible and ethical management practices.

Homework (2 assignments):

1) Read all of the materials contained in the weeks 7 & 8 in the reader including the following
articles on E-res:

• Raffa, T. (2004, Fall). Retirement Programs. In The Nonprofit Quarterly
• de Pass, T. (2004). In Beyond the Pink Slip. In The Nonprofit Quarterly

2) In chart form, compare Wolf’s standard elements of personnel policies (pps. 131, 132 in Wolf)
with the four personnel policies that appear in the reader. Which elements do you find included
in and missing from the various policies? What are your thoughts on the tone and structure of
these policies? In addition to compiling a simple matrix, jot down some notes and come
prepared to discuss the policies in class next week. This assignment is to be handed in.

Week 9/Nov. 5th: Volunteers

One can easily argue that volunteers are the backbone of nonprofits in America. Yet, according
to the Corporation for National and Community Service, almost one third of the more than 65
million American adults who volunteered their time with nonprofit organizations in 2005, did not
renew their commitment in 2006. How does attracting and retaining volunteers differ from
attracting and retaining paid staff? Today we’ll hear a presentation from Directors of Volunteers
In Agencies.

1) Optional: For further information on volunteering, go to

2) Please read and come prepared to discuss: Leading and Changing Human Service
Organizations (it can be found in chapter 9 of your reader). Think about these questions: How do
good managers integrate values into the operation of their organizations?

Week 10/Nov 12th: Employee Evaluation and Leadership Styles

Employee evaluations are often dreaded by both supervisors and staff; too often supervisors
struggle to give constructive feedback while staff members stifle the urge to be defensive. Today
we’ll begin by taking a look at the elements that make for a good employee evaluation process.
Then we’ll consider what constitutes a “good” nonprofit leader. One critical element is the
ability to bring out the best in staff. Our discussion today will include a review of evaluation
tools, move on to the leadership models discussed in the Lewis et al article, and then look at
Libby's Managing Through Mentoring model to help us define what kind of managers we are and
want to be.

Homework (1 assignment):
Carefully read the articles in chapter 9 of your reader. I will ask several of you to present the
information contained in these articles –to articulate the management models and philosophies
that are described – to your classmates next week. Come prepared to discuss the validity and
challenges in each of the management models presented.

Week 11/Nov. 19th: Leading and Managing: Are they one and the same?

Herb, Leslie and Price propose one paradigm, Greenleaf another, and Minzberg a third. How do
their ideas mesh or conflict with the practices at W.L. Gore, and with the ideas of Sirota,
Mischkind and Meltzer, and those described by Kiger and Courtney? Can we arrive at a coherent
view of management and leadership? Is it really all that different to manage for-profits than
nonprofits? I’ll look forward to hearing your presentations on these articles and your thoughts on
how the leadership and management models proposed resonate with your observations of
yourself and your own workplaces.

Homework (1 assignment):

Read the articles in Chapter 10 of your reader that describe the quagmires of the American Red
Cross. Now, imagining that you are a consultant to Dr. Healy, map out a strategy for increasing
her effectiveness and that of the Red Cross itself. Please keep in mind what the consultant’s role
is, i.e., what you can do as opposed to those things you can suggest. I want you to address
specific strategies she could use for working with the board and staff (i.e., don’t tell me she needs
to listen more – what exactly does she need to do), and for repositioning the organization as a
whole. Come prepared to discuss this next week in class.

Those of you who desire extra credit, may write a 4 page paper/double spaced strategy memo, on
the subject. Please make sure to refer to the articles on leadership and management that are
contained in your reader and draw upon what you have learned in the course thus far.

Week 12/Nov. 26th: Meeting Management

During the first part of class, we will talk about your solutions for Dr. Healy in light of the
articles you read and life experiences. Then we will view and discuss the film 12 Angry Men as
a vehicle for understanding how individuals use different strategies and techniques to influence
individuals and group members in the course of difficult deliberations.

Homework (3 assignments):
1) read through the materials in weeks 12 and 13 of your reader

2) Go to the website for the Center for Lobbying in the Public Interest and read the sections
marked “lobbying and the law.”

3) Go to the website for Corporate Accountability International and read about their history and
current activities.

Week 13/Nov. 26th: Public Policy Advocacy & Lobbying/ Does the Sector Have a Moral
Obligation to Lobby?

Most nonprofits participate in “advocacy” campaigns but few lobby. What distinguishes
advocacy from lobbying? What are the legal restrictions? How does the legislative process
work? What are the best ways to approach elected and appointed officials? What works? Our
discussion will be informed by our guest speaker, Deputy Attorney General and former State
Assemblyman, Howard Wayne. We’ll also take a look at the successful grassroots lobbying
efforts of Corporate Accountability International.

Week 14 & 15: Dec. 10th and Dec. 17th: Student Presentations on Client Projects.

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