A Word from Our Students, Alumni, and Community Partners


“The University of San Diego’s Nonprofit Institute knows what it’s doing. Being part of this community connects you to a transnational network of applied research, innovative leaders, and resources.”
- Marisa Aurora Quiroz, MA, ‘08 International Community Foundation

“The PhD program has deepened my understanding of the intersection of research and practice. As a result, I am a better consultant, board member and community leader.”
- Lyn Corbett, MA
PhD Student in Nonprofit and Philanthropic Leadership Doctoral Research Assistant

“I was taught to give back from an early age. The [NPI] program spoke straight to my heart and to my commitment in the sector.”
- Michelle Ahearne, MA, ‘07 PhD Student in Nonprofit and Philanthropic Leadership Doctoral Research Assistant

“We are developing nonprofit leaders who will champion the causes and solutions of our community today and in the future.”
- Christy Wilson, MA, ‘12 Rancho Santa Fe Foundation

The Nonprofit Academy

“City-University partnerships are being used to tackle the toughest problems that metros face, and USD is an ideal partner in growing the quality of our nonprofit community. The Nonprofit Academy collaboration uses data and academic expertise to provide real-world skills that improve the competitiveness of our local organizations.”
- David Graham, Deputy Chief Operating Officer, City of San Diego

Governance Symposium

“The Nonprofit Institute’s Governance Symposium is a nonprofit/community imperative to develop diverse, inclusive, and effective boards.”
- Nancy Jamison, Executive Director, San Diego Grantmakers

“Heard next to me, ‘I’m in a room with some of the most amazing people ever. I want to stay all day.’”
- Shirley Nakawatase, CPA, Consultant

“Had a great morning at the USD Governance Symposium. Thanks so much Liz Shear." 
- Paul Shoemaker, Keynote Speaker
“Learning from the best of the best!”
- Teresa Stivers, CEO of Walden Family Services

“Thank you, The Nonprofit Institute for a great day of insights, networking and conversations!”
- Kathryn Martin, Leader and Transition Strategist

“Attending the 13th Annual Nonprofit Governance Symposium enhancing our board and governance skills”
- Nancy Batterman, CEO of Employment & Community Options

“Surprised, amazed, delighted! We are especially grateful for all of the work YOU do, USD Nonprofit and Philanthropic Institute—inspiring, educating and leading best practices for nonprofit and philanthropic organizations, both locally and nationally.”
- Balboa Park Conservancy

“I took such an amazing class today. I’m feeling inspired and energized.”
- Candy Unger, SD Visitation Monitoring

“I am spending the weekend at a conference for leaders of nonprofits. For all you who are wondering whether there is anything good in the world right now, this is the place to be. From Interfaith Community Services, which I represent to arts to conservation, there are a lot of people trying really hard to improve their corner of the universe. Inspiring!”
- Meg Sharp Decker, VP of Interfaith Community Services Board of Directors & Speaker