Graduate Certificate Proposal. Sustainability in Public and Nonprofit Organizations. Certificate Program Request

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1 Graduate Certificate Proposal Sustainability in Public and Nonprofit Organizations Certificate Program Request Title of Certificate: Sustainability in Public and Nonprofit Organizations Academic Level: Graduate Unit/Department: School of Public, Nonprofit & Health Administration College: College of Community and Public Service Courses (number, title, and credits) comprising the certificate: PA 550 Public Administration Workshop (Cases in the Application of SustainabilityPrinciples to Communities) 1 Cr. PA 671 Building Sustainable Communities 3 Cr. PA 672 Building Sustainable Public-serving Organizations 3 Cr. PA 551 Public Administration Workshop (Cases in Sustainable Practices in Organizations) 1 Cr. PA673 Practicum in Decision Making for Sustainability 3 Cr. PA 552 Public Administration Workshop (Cases in Applying Sustainability to Planning and Decision Making in Organizations) 1 Credit Purpose and rationale for the certificate: Offering a certificate in this area is consistent with the mission of the University in that it flows from the University s Strategic Plan. The revised strategic plan for identifies sustainability as a value of the University. The plan also includes a subobjective that states: "By2015, students will have the opportunity to pursue a certificate or other credentials that certifies their sustainability expertise. This certificate would make such an opportunity available to both current graduate students and alumni of the institution as well as practicing professionals in the field. The target audience for this program consists of current students who wish to develop expertise in an additional area, alumni of the School of Public and Nonprofit Administration and those employed in public and non-profit organizations in the state of Michigan. We anticipated offering the certificate program at multiple sites around the state of Michigan where there are significant numbers of public and non-profit employees. 1

2 Supplemental Information This document provides the additional information indicated in the proposal guidelines of the GVSU Policies and Procedures for Graduate Certificate Programs but not provided for on the proposal form in the online curriculum development process. Educational Objectives of the Program 1. Graduates of the certificate program will be able to describe the foundational concepts and historical background of sustainability. 2. Graduates of the certificate program will be able to discuss the ways in which sustainability applies to the specific context of public and nonprofit 3. Graduates of the certificate program will be able to apply the elements of the triplebottom-line to the functions of public and nonprofit 4. Graduates of the certificate program will be able to illustrate ways in which sustainability impacts the planning and decision making processes of public and nonprofit 5. Graduates of the certificate program will be able to discuss the role of the development of social capital in the implementation of sustainability in public and nonprofit 6. Graduates of the certificate program will be able to demonstrate the ability to identify alternative courses of action and evaluate choices in the application of sustainability principles in the functioning of public and nonprofit Need for Program Interest in Sustainability has been growing rapidly over the past several years. To cite one example, the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) began in 2001 and its membership has now grown to nearly 600 four-year and graduate institutions and over two hundred two-year institutions. Sustainability is also the focus of a growing number of degree and certificate programs. The AASHE list of academic programs in sustainability includes twelve 4-year colleges or universities that offer certificates in sustainability and more than 20 senior institutions that offer sustainability focused master s degree. Many programs in sustainability target a specific occupational or demographic group. For example, there are programs in areas such as sustainable development, urban sustainability, sustainable business, sustainable design, etc. In the School of Public and Nonprofit Administration working with Continuing Education contracting with the Morrow Group for a study of interest in sustainability. A structured telephone survey consisting of 100 completed surveys was conducted. The study utilized a list consisting of GVSU Public and Nonprofit Administration alumni as well as a commercially available list of individuals employed in the public and nonprofit sectors. Random selection techniques were used to complete calls to 100 persons out of a pool of 1003 individuals. 2

3 Among the findings of this study was that 65% of the respondents thought that it was very important for organizations to apply sustainability principles in their operations and an additional 32% thought that it was somewhat important. 88% of the respondents saw a need for advanced instruction in sustainability that prepares individuals to apply sustainability issues in leaderships and managerial positions. Respondents in the study had a variety of preferences for ways to learn about sustainability. But, there appeared to be sufficient interest in a University certificate program to offer one successfully. Impact on Diversity of Graduate Education at the University Many public and nonprofit organizations have a specific mission to serve under represented communities. The marketing plan for the certificate will include a method to identify these organizations and specific outreach initiatives to invite their employees to pursue the certificate. In keeping with the University s value statement on inclusiveness in the Strategic Plan, we will emphasize communicating information about this certificate to potential students from underrepresented groups. Impact on Other Degree Programs The course in this certificate program may be used as electives in the Master of Public Administration program. It is not anticipated that they will be used in any other graduate program. Interdisciplinary Potential This certificate is designed to serve individuals working in the public and non-profit sectors. All of the courses will be offered by the School of Public, Nonprofit and Health Administration. External Accreditation This certificate program will not be subject to external accreditation. Assessment Plan A research project will be required of all students enrolled in PA 683. A random sample of these projects will be selected and assessed according to a rubric developed by program faculty. The rubric will assess critical thinking, knowledge of sustainability principles and the ability to apply these principles to specific situations. Assessment Rubric for Sustainability 3 = Good 2 = Satisfactory 1 = Needs Improvement 0 = Absent Criteria: 3

4 4 1. Supports Arguments 2. Critically Evaluates Alternatives 3. Demonstrates Knowledge of Sustainability Principles 4. Demonstrates knowledge of the Role of Social Capital 5. Applies Sustainable Solutions to Organizational Activities Appropriately Catalog Copy Graduate Certificate in Sustainability in Public and Nonprofit Organizations This program offer professionals working in public and nonprofit organizations the knowledge and perspectives required to apply sustainability principles to the major functions of their This certificate is designed for professional employees of public and nonprofit organizations who have an undergraduate or graduate degree and experience in the field. Admission Applicants for the certificate program must. 1. Apply to the School of Public, Nonprofit and Health Administration 2. Hold a bachelor s degree with a minimum GPA or 3.0 in the last two years of undergraduate work. 3. Hav e at least 3 years of professional experience. 4. Submit official transcripts. Program Management This proposal anticipates that the School of Public, Nonprofit and Health Administration will add a visiting or affiliate faculty member with substantial expertise in sustainability prior to offering the certificate. This faculty member will be the program director for the certificate and will be responsible for implementing the assessment of the certificate. Relation of Course Sequence to Educational Objectives Each of the educational objectives listed above is specifically addressed in one the three new courses and in one of the workshops required for the certificate. Objectives #1 and #2 will be addresses in PA 671 and PA 550. Objectives #3 and #4 will be addressed in PA 672 and PA 551. Objectives #5 and #6 will be addressed in PA 673 and PA 552. Distance Delivery Potential The three new courses proposed for this certificate have the potential to be taught in either an online or a hybrid format which would enhance their convenience for working students. The three workshops focus on the discussion of case studies related to the material taught in one of the three courses. We do not anticipate that these workshops will be delivered in either a hybrid or an online format.

5 Overlap with Existing Courses While a variety of courses offered by the University contain material that addresses sustainability, the courses in this certificate are the only ones that address professional roles in the nonprofit and public organization environments specifically. Program Requirements in Addition to Coursework The courses listed above are the only requirements for this certificate. Maximum Number of Transfer Credits Students may transfer a maximum of 4 credits into this program. Transfer credits limited to courses determined to be equivalent to the PA 681, 682, 683 or workshop content. Faculty Teaching in Program This proposal anticipates that the School of Public, Nonprofit and Health Administration will add a visiting or affiliate faculty member with substantial expertise in sustainability. This faculty member will teach nine credits per year from among the courses required for the certificate. It is anticipated that adjunct faculty will teach one to three sections per year of courses required for the certificate. Fiscal Impact of Program Our intention is for the certificate program to generate more revenue in tuition than expenditures associated with it by the end of the third year it is offered. Tuition revenue is projected as follows: Year 1 Year 2 Year 3 Students Credits per student Revenue $53,520 $67,824 $90,432 Expenditures associated with this certificate are as follows: 1 Visiting Faculty Member $62,245 1 Graduate Assistant $19,304 CSSM $ 1,500 Total of Costs $83,050 5

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