Category Archives: Education

35 Years of Nonprofit Management Education

Dr. Micheal O’Neill and Dr. Marco Tavanti, past and current MNA Program Directors

In 2018 the Master of Nonprofit Administration (MNA Program) at University of San Francisco celebrated its 35 years of existence since its foundation in 1983 by Dr. Michael O’Neill. The 35th MNA Anniversary Celebration of April 25th featured a panel reflecting on the accomplishments and challenges of nonprofit management education in the 21st Century. This video shares some of the highlights of the events and the valued reflections provided provided by our alumni Jeanne Bell (MNA ’01) and Alexa Cortez Culwell (MNA ’95).

The following are Dr. Marco Tavanti’s opening remarks to the April 25th Anniversary Celebrations

Thank you and welcome to this Panel Discussion and Celebration of the Master of Nonprofit Administration Program Celebration of its 35 Years of Excellence and Social Innovation. We are honored today to have a panel of experts – that will introduce shortly — and that will help us to understand some of the main challenge and opportunities in nonprofit education, community responsibility and capacity development. After an award ceremony we will continue our networking celebrations upstairs in the 5th floor AGORA where you can meet MNA alumni, friends and students while also viewing MNA Capstone Posters samples and Infographics from the annual Academic Global Immersion Program on Refugee. In the meantime (and to earn your drinks) you should also respond to the survey in front of you. On the table you can also find a card where you can formulate a question you may have for the panelists.

The Ignatian Pedagogical Paradigm, is a Jesuit method for teaching and learning embedded in our current MNA degree. It starts with observing the reality (seen it also through immersions and experiential learning), followed by the analysis (often through multidisciplinary perspectives and mixed methodologies to understand complex and unjust realities of marginalization), and the action into making the world a better place such as the USF slogan (Change the World from Here…). What was known in Latin America as VER, JULGAR, ACTUAR, has been integrated by impact evaluation and contextualization into our local/global and diverse communities. More recently this method included a new dimension CELEBRAR, to celebrate our accomplishments. Our celebration of the 35th anniversary of the MNA program reflects all these paradigms and invites us to take time to pause, observe, reflect, a celebrate the past and future of nonprofit management education.

In 1983, Dr. Michael O’Neill had the pioneering vision of designing a graduate degree to develop managerial and leadership capacity for nonprofit professionals. The MNA Program was accompanied by the research activities of the Institute for Nonprofit Organization Management (INOM) which followed other academic innovations such as the establishment of Nonprofit Academic Center Council (NACC) in 1981 and the creation of the Association of Voluntary Action Scholars later renamed as Association for Research on Nonprofit Organizations and Voluntary Action (ARNOVA) in 1971. Dr. Michael O’Neill is known as the father of nonprofit management education (NME) that emerged as a field of study through these and other pioneering activities in which he was deeply involved.

While Dr. Michael O’Neill worked on developing the field of NME in the West Coast University of San Francisco, one of his colleague in the East Coast, Prof. Lester Salamon at the Washington DC Urban Institute (now at John Hopkins University) contributed to understand the scope and structure of the nonprofit sector. Today, nonprofit/nongovernmental/charities/philanthropic and voluntary institutions are major forces for good contributing to almost 6% of the American economy and 1/6 of the labor force in California. Internationally, the third sector institutions include a wider spectrum of organizations including hybrid social enterprises and social innovations solutions for the emerging world social economy. Our MNA students know about these developments and also know that both social and economic impact needs to be equally considered and measured to understand the true value of the sector.

In the last 35 years, the Program has generated 612 alumni in key leadership positions and influential roles for the advancement of the capacity, impact and sustainability of the sector.  We are honored today to have with us two of these MNA alumni, Alexa Cortes Culwell (MNA 95), Co-Founder of Open Impact and author of The Giving Code and the Giving Journey and Jeanne Bell (MNA ’01) who served until recently as CEO at Compass Point and now at Nonprofit Quarterly and in our MNA Advisory Board. Jeanne is also a well-known author of Nonprofit Sustainability other publications for the promotion of social impact with sustainable business practices among NPOs.

We are excited to engage in a panel conversation with Michael, Alexa and Jeanne on the past, present and future of nonprofits, its education and its capacity needs for effective leaders and organizations. Who can better represent our voice than one of our current MNA students, Sascha Rosemond (MNA ’19), who currently serves as Development and Donor Relations Assistant at the San Francisco Foundation.

Please join me to welcome Sasha, with Jeanne, Alexa and Michael to these conversations.

 

Nonprofit Equity and Diversity

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The University of San Francisco is hosting the Social Equity Leadership Conference (SELC) on June 1-3, 2016. Established by National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA), the Social Equity Leadership Conference is focused on advancing the knowledge and understanding of applied and theoretical research toward the promotion of social equity in governance. Nonprofits and the Third Sector are not exempt from the challenges and opportunities to advance social equity in the communities they serve and in the representations of their own organizations.

The papers presented represent many issues related to racial equality, gender inclusion, economic integration, access and justice. These topics are some of the main concerns of nonprofit organizations (NPOs). NPOs are on the forefront of addressing systemic issues related to various aspects of life and dignity in our societies. They do so though their advocacy work and by reminding us all that service and compassion are not enough to produce those systemic changes needed to address injustices generated by our socio-economic systems. But NPOs are also not exempt from looking inward and promoting social equity within the organizational structure and leadership compositions of our boards. Many NPOs still fail to promote more inclusive organizations, especially in nonprofit leadership that is still not diverse enough to represent clients and served communities.

The MNA program at USF takes these issues for social equity and racial diversity to heart by welcoming critical thinking and uncomfortable discussions about diversity, inclusion, access and inequality. We cannot change what we do not recognize as an issue and we cannot manage what we cannot identify and measure. Our Nonprofit Ethical Leadership course – a foundation course in the MNA program along with Strategic Board Governance – centers the discussion on these issues through cases, statistics and ethical decision making exercises.  We discuss and reflect about how NPOs must promote equity from within. We compare our organizations and reflect on how promoting board diversity is not just politically correct – but essential for achieving effectiveness in our social missions.

On the one hand, racial, ethnic, political, and disciplinary diversity needs to be promoted and better integrated in our NPOs. On the other hand, economic inequality and privileged opportunities needs to be dissipated, accounted and transformed in order to guarantee that our mission reflects our practice. While nonprofits are becoming more efficient in their managerial and business practices they cannot lose sight of their social representation and social accountability for the common good. Unfortunately, the controversies regarding top salaries of nonprofit CEOs and EDs often reflect the extreme inequalities we see in not-so-conscious capitalist societies and unsatisfied self-serving leaders. This is unfortunately evident in underpaid nonprofit workers. It is also evident regarding gender gaps and  women who lead and excel in every aspect of the nonprofit sector – except pay.

Nonprofits are active in denouncing extreme poverty – both locally and globally. But because of their donor-dependency for funding they fall short in denouncing extreme wealth. This is a factor that often makes nonprofits both a solution to the consequences of inequalities but also part of the problem. As they advance their strategies for fundraising they also must work to recognize and transform the extreme (systemic) inequities of our society.

Learn more through these studies and links:

2016 Symposium on Refugees

Global Refugee Mural, Silver Spring, MD

USF for Freedom 2016

Symposium on Refugees, Forced Migrants, and Human Security

There are many names for people who flee war and violence across borders: refugees, forced migrants, unaccompanied minors, displaced people. This symposium looks at the quest for freedom through the lens of human security and asks: Why do people leave their homes? What happens through the migration journey? How do youth and adult migrants navigate the process of relocation?

Symposium on Refugees, Forced Migrants, and Human Security

This symposium examines global issues and local perspectives on refugees and forced migration, bringing together scholars, migrants, service providers, and activists. The two panels and networking reception will offer a rich opportunity for building awareness and solidarity through dialogue and exchange.

Panel 1: Displacement and Human Security

Moderator: Annick Wibben, Associate Professor, University of San Francisco Department of Politics

Confirmed Panelists:
Olivier Bercault, Adjunct Professor, University of San Francisco Department of International Studies
Lariza Dugan-Cuadra, Executive Director, CARECEN – Central American Resource Center
Bill Ong Hing, Professor & Dean’s Circle Scholar, University of San Francisco School of Law
Ali Khoie, Management Consultant, ORAM – Organization for Refuge, Asylum & Migration
Marco Tavanti, Professor & Director of the Nonprofit Administration Program, University of San Francisco School of Management

Panel 2: Relocation, Resettlement, and Human Security

Moderator: Monisha Bajaj, Associate Professor, University of San Francisco Department of International & Multicultural Education

Confirmed Panelists:
Lindsay Gifford, Assistant Professor, University of San Francisco Department of International Studies
Lauren Markham, Community School Program Manager, Oakland International High School
Vivian Faustino-Pulliam, International Faculty of Jesuit Commons: Higher Education at the Margins & Adjunct Professor, University of San Francisco School of Management
Meron Semedar, Huffington Post Blogger, Youth Ambassador for One Young World, & Master’s Student, University of San Francisco

Dr. Marco Tavanti on the MNA Program and Refugees

What role can nonprofits play in the global refugee crisis?

Learn more about USF For Freedom 2016

This symposium is sponsored by CRASE Interdisciplinary Action Group and organized by Monisha Bajaj, Associate Professor, International & Multicultural Education, School of Education; Shabnam Koirala-Azad, Associate Dean, School of Education; Tika Lamsal, Assistant Professor, Rhetoric, College of Arts & Sciences; Marco Tavanti, Professor and Director, Nonprofit Administration, School of Management; Kathleen Coll, Assistant Professor, Politics Department, College of Arts & Sciences; Vivian Faustino-Pulliam, Adjunct Professor, Economics, Law and International Business, School of Management; Lindsay Gifford, Assistant Professor, International Studies, College of Arts and Sciences; Annick T.R. Wibben, Associate Professor, Politics & International Studies, College of Arts & Sciences.

Read more at: http://www.usf4freedom.org

Missed the 2016 USF4Freedom symposium? Check these feeds at https://storify.com/ATRWibben/symposium-on-refugees-forced-migrants-and-human-se