Microcredentials

Microcredentials are courses that help you develop new, relevant and demonstrable skills that can give you an edge in a competitive job market.  

Non-credit bearing microcredentials offered by UAlbany Professional Adult and Continuing Knowledge (PACK) cost $399 each. Payment is required at the time of registration. 

To learn about other microcredential offerings at UAlbany, visit the Microcredentials website

 

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Fundamentals of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Sense of Belonging for Professionals

The ongoing demographic shift in the global workforce has demanded an intentionality from leaders and managers to ensure organizational viability moving forward. This microcredential is designed to provide learners with the concepts and practices that are foundational to being culturally and equity responsive. Over the three sessions, the learners explore aspects that influence effective diversity, equity, inclusion, and sense of belonging. 

This course is split into three 2-hour sessions: 
 

  1. Historical and Foundational Aspects of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Sense of Belonging: Introduces learners to key historical events, including legal events that have influenced practices of DEIS in the workplace. Morrill Act, Fair Housing Act, Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX are discussed to provide context of current practices today. This session covers foundational understanding of protected classes and literacy surrounding equal employment opportunity. 
     

  2. Dialogue Across Difference: Combines experiential activities and small group discussion based on the philosophy of Intergroup Dialogue. Participants earn skills in active listening, suspending judgment, leaning into discomfort, and using empathy as way to be more culturally responsive in work environments. Learners have a better sense of their own identity and how power, privilege, and oppression interplay with those who they supervise and lead. 
     

  3. Influence of DEIS in the Workplace: Emphasizes the strategic benefits of DEIS in successful teams and organizations. This session helps learners differentiate between performative/reactive actions and impactful, enduring initiatives focused on engaging all employees, improved climate, and sense of belonging and the creation of high functioning teams. 
     

The next fully online course is scheduled for September 5 to 23, 2022. Register now.

Nonprofit Grant Writing

This microcredential is designed for anyone tasked with finding grant funds for their organization. It will provide entry and mid-level practitioners with the skills and knowledge required for successful nonprofit grant prospecting, grant writing, and grant management. 

This course is split into three 2-hour sessions: 
 

  1. Grant Prospecting that Works: Provides strategies for grant prospecting activities that make the grant writing process more efficient and effective. Learners will explore strategies for developing current or future grants programs, creating more efficiency in the grant application process, and better understanding the importance of prospecting as part of the overall grants strategy.  
     

  2. Grant Writing for Success: Learners will review common grant application types, the pros and cons of each grant type, and some general information about how to structure and write successful grant proposals to varied audiences (e.g., governmental, foundation, corporate). Learners will explore the Case Statement/Case for Support and its impact on the overall grant writing process. By the end of this session learners will have a better idea about the type of grants best suited to meet their organizational needs, writing styles better suited for each grant type (government, foundation, corporate), and ways to streamline the writing process. 
     

  3. Strategies for Successful Grant Management: Learners will review the important aspects of a quality grant management program. This will include the common requirements to prepare for after securing a grant from various funding sources (government, foundation, corporate). Sample tools will be provided and discussed for their applicability to grant programs. Learners will gain additional strategies for supporting continued grant funding through quality grant management programs along with resources and ideas about different tools and/or strategies to enhance their grant management program. Emphasis will be placed on compliance and strategies that move organizations from compliance to collaborative relationships with funders. 
     

The next live, online course is scheduled for 5:30 to 8 p.m. EDT each Wednesday from September 14 to 28, 2022. Register now.

Strategic Planning for Nonprofits

Every organization should consider how to build and sustain a stakeholder-driven strategic plan to chart a thoughtful future course, improve impact, increase sustainability, and respond to constantly evolving environments and markets.  

This microcredential touches on all the fundamentals of a strategic planning process, from preparation and stakeholder engagement, through the creation of measurable and time specific annual operating plans, to implementation and evaluation. 

This course is split into three 2-hour sessions: 
 

  1. How to Build and Sustain a Mission and Stakeholder-Driven Strategic Plan: What is a strategic plan and why do we engage in planning? This session includes a review of key concepts and the strategic planning process, from identifying and engaging stakeholders to developing goals and developing, implementing, and evaluating a multi-year work plan that is responsive to the rapidly changing environment we live in. 
     

  2. You've Committed Your Organization to Strategic Planning... Now What?: In this hands-on session, learners discuss the use of specific tools and activities leading to the identification of thematic goal areas, practice developing concise, clear, implementable, SMART, and mission-based goals, and develop supporting objectives for their organization's work plan. 
     

  3. How to Ensure Your Strategic Plan Doesn't Sit on the Shelf and Collect Dust: This session focuses deeply on developing annual operating or work plans for your goals and objectives. Learners learn about the use of dashboards to keep their strategic plan front-and-center at staff and board meetings and consider strategies for holding themselves and each other accountable for the success of the plan. 
     

The next live, online course is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET each Wednesday from March 7 to 21, 2023. Register now.

Impacts of Environmental Social Governance

The increasing importance of sustainability and human rights has cast considerable focus on the practices or policies within a company or organization and the impact those practices, policies, and investments have on employees, the environment, and society.  

The concept in its entirety is called Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG). This microcredential will introduce ESG as a system.  

Within that system, the components of environmental, social, and governance impacts can be identified as well as measured. This credential will focus on how those impacts are identified, measured, and reported within a dynamic environment that is exposed to external forces (e.g., climate change), the impact of which is not fully understood.  

Participants will learn how to build ESG concepts into business plans and identify points of risk within a business's operations. Sessions will include a discussion of real-world scenarios, including active debate on policy implementation and enforcement.  

Lastly, we will discuss the market impacts of differentiating understandings of ESG as a concept and ESG as an economic entity. 

This course is split into four 90-minute sessions: 
 

  1. Understanding Environmental Social Governance (ESG) — The Fundamentals: Learners will explore ESG vocabulary (same words/different meanings), a high-level overview of the impacts of ESG, materiality, and the current state of global ESG. 
     

  2. ESG Risk Management: Learners will explore points of risk within your business or operation, building ESG concepts into your business plan, business/marketing positioning using ESG, and becoming a local ESG leader. 
     

  3. Impact Investing: Learners will explore how and why ESG is scored, understand the ESG scoring/matrix, social engagement and stewardship, responsibilities, regulatory dynamics, and the evolving responsibilities and mandates. 
     

  4. Future State: Learners will explore the broader sustainability context and global initiatives, the ESG market, environmental factors and megatrends, approaches to environmental analysis at country, sector, and company levels, and global, regional, local context. 
     

The next live, online course is scheduled for 12:00 to 1:30 p.m. EDT each Wednesday from October 26 to November 16, 2022. Register now.

Foundations in Clinical Interviewing

This microcredential is designed for any professional involved in any level of patient care, contact or program development within medical or patient care settings.  

The course is designed to enhance front end/mid-level professionals’ understanding of how to assess the functioning of first contacts with patients as a means of improving patient flow and preparation of documentation for other care team members.  

Earners also improve their assessment and interview tools to enhance efficiency/effectiveness of patient care. 

This course is split into three 3-hour sessions: 
 

  1. The Semi-Structured Clinical Interview: Provides a foundation in clinical interviewing as it is carried out by various team members in a variety of settings, which symptoms are assessed for, and how this information is both related to and used by various team members. Direct examples of semi-structured interviews are reviewed with in-session practice and assessment of each of these performed during this session. 
     

  2. Interdisciplinary Team Collaboration: Learners review clinical interview materials and approaches used in various settings, assessing these in relation to the goals of the setting the effectiveness of present interview styles and types in meeting those goals. Individual questions, scales and materials are reviewed. Learners independently research which tools are used at present and offer thoughts on their uses. This session includes a team assignment. 
     

  3. Clinical Interviews in Practice: Learners are provided information on a "real world" setting, and as a team develop a semi-structured clinical interview best suited for the setting and the identified individual and team needs. Learners present their interview, providing justification, anticipated outcomes, how it effectively serves their population, and perform a trial run of their clinical interview. Learners present how this interview meets system and program goals. 
     

The next live, online course is scheduled for noon to 3:30 p.m. EST each Saturday from October 15 to October 29, 2022. Register now.

Prototyping and Developing Web and Mobile Applications Using No-Code Tools

Learners become familiar with basic development design concepts and tools that can be used to develop models of planned web or mobile applications and will have the opportunity to acquire skills in the practice of user interface design, wireframing and mockup development, and the use of current prototyping tools for simulating user interactions and experiences. 

This course is split into four 2-hour sessions:
 

  1. Design Basics — Getting Started with Brainstorming an Application: Provides an overview of basic web and application design terms and an introduction to usability and accessibility considerations in technology design. 
     

  2. Understanding the Assignment — Knowing your Who's and Why's: Concentrates on considering users in design; presents strategies to determine user types for various web/mobile applications, establishing user goals and how web/mobile applications can help achieve them, writing user stories to represent how proposed applications will support user goals. 
     

  3. Wireframes and Mockups: Provides a step-by-step introduction to creating low-fidelity and high-fidelity wireframes and mockups of user interface views for a system. Mapping user interface elements back to user stories will be presented. 
     

  4. Interactive Prototyping: Provides a step-by-step introduction to creating an interactive prototype that allows a walkthrough of the actions that would be taken by a user to achieve their goals as outlined in a user story. Mapping of interaction represented in prototype to wireframes/mockups is presented. 
     

The next fully online course is scheduled for October 17 to November 11, 2022. Register now. 

Marketing Management

This microcredential is designed for nonprofit board members, employees, or volunteers with a nonprofit or community organization, or small business operators who want to build their marketing and communications skills. 

Learners will develop critical skills necessary to manage marketing initiatives designed to connect with constituents, clients, community members, board members, employees, and volunteers with the goal of publicizing events, promoting their mission, and conducting fundraising campaigns. 

This course is split into seven 2-hour sessions: 
 

  1. Marketing Strategy: Learners will explore current marketing trends, develop a marketing, and outreach strategy for their nonprofit organization. By the end of the session, learners should have a preliminary strategy in mind that utilizes their website as the cornerstone of their marketing strategy with a combination of email and social media marketing serving as the drivers of qualified traffic and leads. 
     

  2. Website Strategy & Management: Learners will explore how to optimize their existing website… or simply build a new one. From choosing a domain name and the right platform, content, security, and search engine optimization, this seminar provides a series of steps and action items necessary to build, manage, and maintain a website. This session is designed to help organizations understand how their website works and how to use it more effectively.  
     

  3. Facebook Strategy: Learners explore how to start, optimize and manage a Facebook Page for their organization or group. Facebook continues to provide a consistently strong return on investment for marketing businesses of all sizes. For many nonprofits, Facebook can provide an inexpensive entry into advertising. For most organizations, Facebook should be the first social media channel established with the goal of reaching beneficiaries, volunteers, and donors. Gain valuable insight into using the Facebook algorithms to their benefit and advantage.  
     

  4. Facebook Ads Manager: Learners explore how to make effective use of paid advertising on Facebook. Take control of your marketing budget and use it for effectively marketing your nonprofit organization to a highly qualified audience of Facebook users. In this interactive session, you will learn to use the same robust marketing tool that marketing agencies use. This session covers boosting posts, marketing events, growing fans, analytics and audience development.  
     

  5. Email Marketing: Email marketing provides the highest return-on-investment out of ALL marketing channels. Learn why organizations should be using email marketing and how to do it more effectively. Learners can follow along the presentation and design their first template. Email marketing strategy, content development and contact list growth will be addressed in detail. Design and launch an email marketing campaign in one day. Attendees will see a side-by-side comparison of Constant Contact and Mailchimp, two of the leading email marketing platforms. Learners will get expert feedback on their organization's current email template. 
     

  6. LinkedIn Marketing: Learners explore the value of using LinkedIn to promote and add credibility to their organization. LinkedIn is the oldest social media platform on the Internet, even pre-dating Myspace. Today, it is the world's best forum for business-to-business marketing. For nonprofit organizations, it is a great place to recruit volunteers and board members, connect with other organizations and businesses and build credibility for your organization. If you are hiring, there is no better place than LinkedIn. We will start with how to build a business page for your organization and how to access an existing page. This session will go through the page settings, outline industry best practices, and discuss strategy for LinkedIn communications, marketing, public relations, reputation management and fundraising. 
     

The next live, online course is currently being scheduled. Join the waitlist to be notified when registration opens. 

Taking a Person First Approach in Organization Operations

This microcredential explores various topics related to creating a person-first approach in your organization to gain a sense of understanding, recognize where there is opportunity for growth, identify tools and resource all while empowering you to move your organization forward.  

Learners explore building a person-centered organizational structure, human capital, organizational belonging, workforce development, burnout, and committing to a culture of change and elevation. 

  • Sessions 1 & 2 (90 minutes each) — Have You Taken Your People into Account Lately?: Understand the need to align people with organizational goals to achieve engagement, retention, succession. Participants consider the organizational health of their organization, explore concepts of how individuals impact organizational development, success. Topics: person-centered org. structure, human capital, work-life integration, people engagement, committing to elevating individuals in your organization. 

  • Session 3 (90 minutes) — Transforming from Employee Engagement to People Experience: An environment of inspiration and productivity requires orgs to create a space where people feel connected, valued, and motivated. Learners will identify ways to assess their org's operations, policies, and benefits to see if they are meeting their people's needs. Topics: psychological safety, biases awareness, toxic cultures, organizational audit, resources, and professionals to support orgs. in their cultural dev. 

  • Session 4 (2 hours) — Workforce Development: Beyond the On-boarding Process: This session explores why workforce development is essential and what it looks like beyond general on-boarding to ensure engagement, retention, and internal succession. In addition to general knowledge, the session explores action-based ideas and techniques. Topics: training and development, cross-training, succession planning, and mentorship. 

  • Session 5 (90 minutes) — Elevating Organizational Operations & Structures to Reduce the Impacts of Burnout: This session discusses the operational and structural causes of burnout and potential impacts on the workplace, team dynamics, and people experience. This session also includes topics and techniques to create change organizationally and as a leader. Topics: understanding burnout, impacts on the organization, and recognizing how to create change. 

The next live, online course will follow this schedule: 

  • 9 to 10:30 a.m. October 24, 2022 

  • 9 to 10:30 a.m. October 25, 2022 

  • 9 to 10:30 a.m. October 31, 2022 

  • 9 to 11 a.m. November 2, 2022 

  • 9 to 10:30 a.m. November 8, 2022 

Register now.

Organizational Solutions for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Sense of Belonging

This microcredential provides participants in mid-level and senior leadership roles with strategies to create twenty-first century, culturally responsive workspaces which include high functioning diverse teams and improve diversity, equity, inclusion, and sense of belonging (DEIS) outcomes. 

This course is split into three 2-hour sessions: 
 

  1. Culturally Responsive Needs Assessment of Workplace Climate: Helps learners identify the best assessment strategies for understanding their organization's climate. Participants are introduced to key assessment strategies which provide a representative context of organizational climate. Participants learn proven techniques and practices for assessing the views, attitudes, and sentiments of stakeholders at all levels of the organization. 
     

  2. Best Practices for DEIS Strategic Planning: Provides learners with effective DEIS strategic planning methods that ensure measurable, meaningful, and enduring organizational outcomes. Learners will be able to clearly differentiate actions from strategies and will gain the information needed to play a facilitative role in organizational DEIS development and positive change. 
     

  3. Effective Diverse Talent Acquisition Strategies: In this session, learners develop talent acquisition and recruiting strategies that help them realize their organization's aspirational talent acquisition goals. This session focuses on intentional, high impact practices that are evidenced based, measurable, and enduring. Participants walk away with artifacts and tools that will aid in realizing their diverse talent acquisition goals. 
     

The next fully online course is scheduled for October 24 to November 11, 2022. Register now.

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Coaching for Leaders and Managers

This microcredential focuses on leadership development for new or experienced leaders of nonprofits or small businesses. 

Participants will learn how to manage their strengths and leadership style, as well as best practices for leading organizations, including teamwork, communication and coaching. 

The course is split into six 2-hour sessions: 
 

  1. Strengths Finder: This session focuses on identifying and building on leaders’ strengths. Learners explore the Clifton StrengthsFinder tool and how it can be applied, examine their own StrengthsFinder profile and how to use it in a leadership context, apply their profile in team-based homogeneous and heterogeneous groupings, and identify complementary strengths that will produce the best outcome for the organization. 
     

  2. Leadership Styles: Learners identify their leadership style is and how it can be used, discuss the context where the style can be used to optimal effect in a leadership setting, and apply their style in team-based homogeneous and heterogeneous groupings. 
     

  3. Emotional Intelligence: Leaners explore what explore emotional intelligence is and how it compares to other forms of intelligence, comprehend how emotionally intelligent leaders model such behavior in the workplace, and be able to apply personal and social competence viz. self-awareness and self-management and social awareness and relationship management. 
     

  4. Team Building: Leaners use Patrick Lencioni’s Five Dysfunctions of a Team as the basis for conversation to distinguish effective teams from poor ones, explore techniques to overcome challenges in managing and forming common dysfunctions in their teams including: absence of trust, fear of conflict, lack of commitment, avoidance of accountability, and inattention to results. 
     

  5. Communication: Learners explore techniques to improve their communications skills and will craft an action plan to measure progress in the following areas: oral communication, written communication, electronic communication, and effective meetings. 
     

  6. Coaching: Learners will explore the basics of leadership coaching and its applicability in the nonprofit world, understand how they might apply a coaching dynamic in their own workplaces, model a simple coaching conversation, and prepare a coaching plan for their teams. 
     

This microcredential is coming soon. Join the waitlist to be notified when registration opens. 

Executive Level Fundraising for Nonprofits

Successful fundraising is a critical component for all nonprofits and a required competency for nonprofit leaders. Without effective fundraising, the fulfillment of nonprofit missions is impossible.  

This microcredential is designed for executive directors, professional fundraising staff, and board members with more than two years of fundraising experience. 

Participants will take a deeper dive into six key areas requiring executive leadership and oversight, including program evaluation, planned giving, board involvement, prospect research, capital and major gift campaigns, and grant writing. 

The course is split into six 90-minute sessions: 
 

  1. Program Evaluation: There are multiple ways to evaluate the health of your fundraising program beyond your total dollars raised. Often, organizations are focused solely on achieving a dollar goal that they are not paying close enough attention to other important metrics within their program. During this course, participants will review the top ten indicators every organization should know, discuss strategies to have a positive impact on these metrics, and Integrate metrics into staff evaluation. 
     

  2. Planned Giving: Most of the planned gifts that organizations receive are simple will bequests. These gifts are often received after a donor has passed away with little awareness by the organization until after the donor has passed. Occasionally, non-profits are involved in more complex gift vehicles that require outside counsel. Regardless of the vehicle, Planned Gifts are an untapped opportunity for most non-profits. During this course, participants will review simple will bequest language and effective marketing strategies, discuss creation of a Planned Giving Advisors committee and a Gift Acceptance Policy, and discuss donor advised funds and additional complex planned giving vehicles.
     

  3. Board Involvement: An effective board of directors for any non-profit organization must be willing to share their time, talent, and treasure. Boards of Directors have a fiduciary responsibility to the organization and play a critical role in advancing the mission of the organization. During this course, participants will: review strategies for board member recruitment and retention and how to handle departures, review and discuss common expectations for board members, and discuss effective board governance. 
     

  4. Prospect Research: As organizations become more sophisticated, it is important to work as effectively as possible with donors and prospects. Prospect research is an important tool that empowers staff to learn more about their current donors and communicate with them more effectively. During this course participants will discover cost-effective tools for prospect research, develop individual donor profiles for prospects, and develop individual donor cultivation, solicitation, and stewardship plans. 
     

  5. Capital\Major Gift Campaigns: Major Gift and\or Capital Campaigns are monumental opportunities for non-profit organizations. These efforts are significant undertakings and should be entered into only after careful planning and evaluation. A successful campaign effort will raise funds, exposure, and capacity for the organization. During this session, participants will discover basic components of a campaign effort, including feasibility studies, discuss important fundamental steps to take leading up to campaign efforts, and discuss hiring outside counsel, attracting and retaining staff and board member involvement. 
     

  6. Grant Writing: Grant writing is both an art and a science and requires planning, data collection, and data based projected outcomes. Grants are also important opportunities to support current programs within your organization. During this course, participants will learn how to research grant opportunities, discuss data gathering and project evaluation techniques, and access on-line products to assess grant award probability. 
     

This microcredential is coming soon. Join the waitlist to be notified when registration opens. 

Introduction to Fundraising for Nonprofits

This microcredential is designed for executive directors, professional fundraising staff, and board members with more than two years of fundraising experience. 

Learners will explore the fundamental mechanics, ethics, and strategies of effective fundraising, including developing, implementing, and evaluating their plan and building annual giving campaigns and special events that further your mission and engage and retain donors. 

The course is split into six 2-hour sessions: 
 

  1. Fundraising 101: Learners discuss giving trends in the nonprofit sector, as well as learn basic fundraising tools and resources that will set an important foundation for the following sessions. Learners will (a) review basic fundraising terminology, (b) discuss common donor motivations for giving, and (c) review IRS policies that nonprofits must follow.
     

  2. Unrestricted\Annual Giving: Learners explore the importance of building a robust annual giving plan integrating with their marketing and communications efforts. Learners (a) Discover necessary components of an annual integrated calendar including direct mail, donor acquisition, digital communication, (b) review/discuss trackable metrics beyond dollars raised to grow annual giving programs, and (c) discuss growth strategies.
     

  3. Special Events: Special events play an important role at every organization as they can be both important fundraising and friend raising tools. Although special events can be very labor intensive for the organization there are ways to make these events both effective and efficient. Learners (a) review and discuss the components of a special events plan, (b) discuss appropriate post-event follow-up, and (c) discover creative ways to raise funds beyond the typical gala format. 
     

  4. Stewardship & Donor Relations: Showing appreciation to donors in the number one way to ensure donors keep giving to your organization. While thank you letters are important, effective stewardship is much more than a simple letter. Learners (a) discover new, unique ways to steward donors to ensure donor retention, (b) discuss effective language for stewardship messages, and (c) review best practices and real-life examples of effective messaging. 
     

  5. Digital Fundraising: Organizations must have a digital presence across multiple platforms and strategize to maximize their exposure to grow their fundraising efforts. Learners (a) discuss integrating a digital strategy within their fundraising strategies, (b) discuss Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and other potential platforms for digital presence and fundraising, and (c) review best practice cases.
     

  6. Building Your Fundraising Strategy: Building Your Fundraising Strategy: Planning, Assessment, and Evaluation – Learners understand how to build an annual fundraising plan and the small, smart, and successive steps you can take to improve overall results by (a) evaluating fundraising program's true effectiveness, (b) developing short and long-term goals based on current performance, (c) planning for the next fiscal year, and d operating a more effective organization which results in more philanthropic dollars. 
     

This microcredential is coming soon. Join the waitlist to be notified when registration opens.