Minor in Nonprofits, Philanthropy, and Volunteerism

12213105675_cdeddcc945_zThis four-course minor focuses on the nonprofit sector – its organizations, philanthropy and voluntary action. The three-course core provides: (1) an overview of the nonprofit sector and philanthropy, including historical and theoretical foundations; (2) the study of voluntary action and service as a means for social change; and (3) insight into the management of nonprofit organizations.

Students select an elective that extends their understanding to the role of nongovernmental organizations in international affairs or to the role of public relations for nonprofits.

This minor is intended for students who plan to (1) work in a nonprofit or charitable organization, whether it is a large organization such as United Way, a small social service agency, an environmental advocacy group, a museum or a religious organization; (2) participate with nonprofits as a volunteer; or (3) pursue graduate work in a service-related profession..

Required Courses

Students are required to take the following courses:

The Nonprofit Sector and the Public Interest (PPD 371) Gateway course
Theories of the voluntary nonprofit sector in society and its relationship to government and business; public policies related to the sector.

Management of Public and Nonprofit Organizations (PPD 402)
Contemporary management theory. Understanding the nature of complex organizations, organizational and intergovernmental arrangements, the roles and responsibilities of managers, organizational effectiveness, and organizational structure and dynamics.

Social Innovation (PPD 478)
Strategies and processes of social innovation and change; examination of social change in the market, government, and within the nonprofit sector; dynamics; civic action and activism.


Students are required to select one course from the following:

  • BUCO 485 — Business Communication Management for Nonprofits
  • JOUR 455* — Public Relations for Non-Profit Organizations
  • IR 371 — Global Civil Society: Non-Governmental Organizations in World Politics
  • PPD 318 — Financial Accounting in Public and Nonprofit Organizations
  • PPD 353 — Introduction to Philanthropy and Grant Writing
  • PPD 372 — Public Service in an Urban Setting

* Prerequisite: JOUR 250

Contact Information

Sarah Esquivel, Assistant Director of Recruitment and Admission
USC Sol Price School of Public Policy
Ralph and Goldy Lewis Hall 111
Los Angeles, California 90089-0626
(213) 740-0399