About the CNP

The CNP Credentiallogo: Credential Nonprofit Logo

The Certified Nonprofit Professional (CNP) credential is the only national nonprofit credential preparing students (undergraduate, graduate, or post-graduate) for careers in nonprofit management. Students who complete a leadership development program at one of the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance’s affiliated colleges or universities are awarded the credential and gain access to a network of nonprofit career resources, including the CNP network.

The CNP Network

More than 10,000 students have completed the requirements of the CNP credential. This group is a powerful network of professionals who are leading some of the country’s most successful social-impact organizations. In addition, the national and local nonprofit organizations that are part of the Alliance network hire more than 50,000 people annually. These are organizations that value the training and preparation that is core to the CNP program.

The Value

Recent research completed by an independent organization shows that CNPs are seven times (7x!) more likely to rise to director+ level than their non-CNP peers. Due to the unique combination of classroom training, practical experience, and leadership activities, CNPs get hired and rise more quickly in their organizations. 

Core Components

1) Coursework through the Alliance’s network of colleges and universities

  • Students receive education and training in the core competencies that nonprofit managers want when they hire new employees.
  • Students completing the program must have a minimum of a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution.

2) Internship or professional experience at a nonprofit organization

  • A minimum of 300 internship hours is required (those working in the nonprofit sector might be exempt).
  • Internship stipends are available on a competitive basis.

3) National conference

  •  Students have the opportunity to attend the Alliance Management Institute: a national nonprofit career development conference where they 1) meet local and national thought leaders, 2) participate in real and mock interviews, and 3) have the unique experience of serving as a consultant to an existing nonprofit organization.

4) Leadership and service activities

  • Students participate in a wide variety of activities that support classroom learning and prepare them for future leadership roles.
  • Students participate in the nonprofit student association on their campuses, which connects them with the national nonprofit student association.

Using the Credential

Students who complete an Alliance program are awarded the CNP credential, which is placed after their name (Jane Doe, CNP). CNPs also receive a transcript and printed certificate of completion and a CNP digital badge, which can be shared on LinkedIn. Whether you are interested in volunteer coordination, fundraising or program management, the CNP program is a proven method to launch a successful social-impact career.

Ready to get your CNP credential?

Find a program today through our online form.