Wake Forest Law partners with School of Divinity to offer online Faith-Based Nonprofit Leadership certificate

Photo of Sarah Saint (JD '17) with her laptop in the common study area in the Worrell Professional Center

Wake Forest Law Professor Steve Virgil, director of experiential learning, is partnering with School of Divinity Professor Dr. John Senior to offer a 12-week, online Faith-Based Nonprofit Leadership Certificate Program open to Wake Forest University students as well as non-students beginning in January 2017.

“This is a very good example of a cross-campus, multi-disciplinary effort that connects to the non-Wake Forest community as well,” Professor Virgil says.

According to the program website, the course is ideal for participants who are:

  • Current and aspiring leaders of nonprofits (staff, board members, or volunteers)
  • Interested in forming a new nonprofit

Certificates will be awarded through the Wake Forest University School of Divinity following completion of all sessions.

Following is more information directly from the Divinity School website. For more information, contact Lance Henry, Certificate Program Assistant.



Course Topics*

  • The Role of Nonprofits in Society: Morally, Ethically, and Legally
  • The History of Nonprofits in the United States
  • An Introduction to Nonprofits and the Nonprofit Sector Today
  • Crafting Mission and Vision Statements
  • The Legal Structure of Nonprofits
  • Strategic Planning and Competitive Analysis
  • Program Development and Assessment
  • Administration
  • Fundraising, Grant Writing, and Finance and Budget
  • Community Organizing & Asset-based Community Development
  • Lobbying and Advocacy

*Subject to change. Official syllabus to be distributed during first class.



Course Structure

The course consists of three weekday evening webinars, two intensive weekend webinars (in-person option for weekends), and twelve hour-long pre-recorded media presentations.

Each participant will complete a professor-supervised project that focuses on a particular strategic need of the participant’s own nonprofit, on some aspect of forming a nonprofit, or on an area of interest related to faith-based nonprofit leadership.

Live Webinar Dates

Three Evenings (webinar only)

  • Wednesday, January 11 from 7 – 9 p.m.
  • Wednesday, February 1 from 7 – 9 p.m.
  • Wednesday, March 15 from 7 – 9 p.m.

Two Weekends (webinar or in-person at Wake Forest University’s Worrell Professional Center)

  • Friday, February 24 from 2:30 – 7 p.m.
  • Saturday, February 25 from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
  • Friday, April 7 from 2:30 – 7 p.m.
  • Saturday, April 8 from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.



Costs and Logistics

The program cost is $250. This does not include travel and lodging for those who choose to attend the two weekend sessions in-person.

After completing all sessions, all participants receive a certificate of completion from Wake Forest University School of Divinity. Registration available at Cvent.

This program is possible thanks to the generous support of the Wake Forest University Provost’s Fund for Academic Innovation and the Jesse Ball DuPont Foundation.