Carlson should add nonprofit major

Teaching students how to manage nonprofits is an investment in our community.

Recently, there has been a push to add nonprofit management to the list of majors offered by the Carlson School of Management. When the idea comes up for consideration this spring, school officials should make the right move. Offering nonprofit management makes sense.

Teaching students how to manage nonprofits is an investment in our community. Nonprofits usually exist to meet a social need. Their services can include helping people get the skills necessary to secure a job, increasing home ownership among the poor or providing health services to the elderly.

Though not all nonprofits operate in these roles, many of them do. And since many people believe that certain responsibilities don’t belong to our government, nonprofits must fill the void. Teaching people to manage these organizations effectively and efficiently benefits everyone. It increases the quality of these organizations, along with the value of donations, by ensuring that the nonprofits in our community successfully compete for donations and continue to serve the public.

Aside from the benefits it can reap for the community at large, it also adds a competitive edge to Carlson. The school is already one of the top business programs in the country. Imagine how many more bright students it would attract if it were to offer a specialized major that many other schools, either because they’re too small or lack adequate resources, don’t offer. The major adds diversity to the curriculum and creates a more dynamic school.

Furthermore, adding the major won’t strain school administrators. Some students have already designed their own major in nonprofit management. A recent Minnesota Daily article pointed out that adding the major simply formalizes the independent major that students have already designed. This means that adding the major won’t demand significant changes to faculty or funding.

In short, nonprofits play a vital role in our society. It only makes sense to offer nonprofit management as an undergraduate degree.