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The Program

NGO and Nonprofit Studies

The Certificate in NGO and Nonprofit Studies at KPU prepares students for voluntary and entry-level work at NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations). In Canada, the nonprofit and voluntary sector is the second largest in the world, with over 1 million full-time (FTE) paid employees. The number of NGOs operating worldwide has been expanding exponentially since WWII, and this presently represents a growing labour market.

There is an increasing move towards professionalization in this area, and KPU's targeted introduction to disciplines in both the Faculty of Arts and the School of Business ensures that graduates have covered comparative perspectives on civil society, voluntary action and philanthropy, as well as key aspects of financial management and accountability.

The Certificate in NGO (Non-Governmental Organizations) and Nonprofit Studies at Kwantlen Polytechnic University is unique to this region, and is distinct from other nonprofit management programs in that if offers the following:

  • 30-credit program available directly out of high school
  • Program structure that bridges the Faculty of Arts and School of Business
  • Broad inclusion of local human rights, environmental, and advocacy organizations in Vancouver's Lower Mainland

Required Courses

Required (5) Required (3) Choose Two (2)

Social and Cultural Anthropology
ANTH 1100

NGO's in Context
ANTH 2190

NGO's in Practice
ANTH 3190

Introduction to Marketing
MRKT 1199

Fundamentals of Business in Canada
BUSI 1110

Two of:

Introduction to Journalism
JRNL 1160

Canadian Government and Politics
POLI 1120

Ideology and Politics
POLI 1110

Human Geography
GEOG 1101

Introduction to Society: Processes and Structures
SOCI 1125

One of:

Introduction to University Writing
ENGL 1100

Introduction to Professional Communication
CMNS 1140

Cross-Cultural Women's and Gender
ANTH 2120

Culture and Environment
ANTH 2160

Introduction to International Relations
POLI 1150

Social Justice in Global and Local Contexts
SOCI 2311

Introduction to GIS
GEOG 2400

Sustainability: Analysis and Ethics
POST 1100/PHIL 1111

Financial Accounting 1
ACCT 1110

Organizational Behaviour 1
BUSI 1215


Any of the required course options not chosen already
ENGL 1100/CMNS 1140/ POLI 1110/ POLI 1120/ GEOG 1101/ JRNL 1160/ SOCI 1125

Laddering the Credential

The following are the programs that most directly relate to continued study, following from the Certificate in NGO and Nonprofit Studies


Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) Bachelor of Arts (BA)

HRMT (Human Resource Management)

ANTH (Anthropology)

ENTRE (Social Entrepreneurship)

SOCI (Sociology)

MRKT (Marketing)

GEOG (Geography)

ACCT (Accounting)

POLI (Political Science)

PRLN (Public Relations)

POST (Policy Studies)

  JRNL (Journalism)

Additionally, the following programs offered in other faculties are also applicable:
AGRI (Sustainable Agriculture) – Bachelor Applied Science
ENVI (Environmental Protection Technology) – Diploma

For any questions, please contact the Program Coordinator, Larissa Petrillo at:

In all cases, the courses that are included in the Certificate in NGO and Nonprofit Studies serve as the required pre-requisite for the following upper-level options -