Please note:

Financial support is available to eligible applicants in the form of a leadership education grant and leadership travel grant. Apply online at

About the program

Community Service Organizations in Canada continue to evolve to meet the diverse and changing needs within our communities. Succession planning is a key requirement for most organizations, creating a demand for skilled managers in the not-for-profit sector. This Ontario College Graduate Certificate Program is uniquely designed for emerging managers in the not-for-profit sector. Graduates attain knowledge and skills not covered in other management programs, setting them apart from others applying for similar jobs. For those with experience in the field of community services, this program will provide you with the skills that may lead to a promotion or enhance your abilities in your management role. You will have the opportunity to gain skills in community development and engagement, program design and evaluation, and project management. Human resources, financial management, principles of management, as well as sponsorship and fundraising will also be addressed in the context of not-for-profit leadership. In this program, you will enhance your understanding of community-based social policy and public administration and gain perspectives on social, cultural and political issues with a focus on equity, inclusion and diversity. Through a variety of projects, case studies, presentations and interactive learning opportunities, you will apply the skills required to be a supervisor, manager and or leader. You will produce individual work, as well as work in groups with a diverse cohort of students who bring a wide breadth of experience to the classroom. This graduate program includes a work placement experience allowing you to gain practical experience to be “job ready” for government, community-based, and or social service-based organizations.

Program information

All courses must be completed within 5 years of acceptance into the program.
Note: Admission to the program is required prior to registration for courses.

Admission requirements

  • A two- or three-year diploma or a degree from an accredited college or university in a related field OR 3 to 5 years work experience in a Social Service agency or Management in a non-related field.

Note re: admission requirements

  • Applicants possessing degrees/diplomas from institutions where the language of instruction was not English will be required to provide test scores as evidence of their English language proficiency. Test scores, if required, would be a minimum of TOEFL iBT 88 (effective January 2024 with no individual skill less than 22; IELTS 6.5 with no bands less than 6.0; CAEL 70 with no sub-test band scores less than 60; PTE Academic 58; Conestoga English Language Test (CELT) Band 6; Cambridge Exams 180 with no individual score less than 170; or equivalent scores in other recognized standard tests of English.

  • We offer a language program for students whose English language skills are below the standard required for admission but who have met all other admission criteria. You will be eligible for admission to the degree program after completion of level 4 of the General Arts and Science – English Language Studies (ELS) program with an overall grade average of 80% and no grade less than 75%. Your placement in the ELS program is determined by scores on an in-house English language test or TOEFL or IELTS.

Admission procedures

  • Submit a completed Conestoga College Program Application Form.
  • Submit proof of Admission Requirements. Review Apply to a Program to learn how.
  • Applicants not meeting the admission requirements will be considered on an individual basis following an assessment of resume and work experience. Upload resume to your application.
  • Applicants not meeting credential requirements, and who are registered at university in year three of a program, may be considered for entry into the program.
  • Final selection is made following an assessment of the admission requirements.

Program requirements

Graduate opportunities

Graduates may enhance employment opportunities in community, government, private and non-profit organizations.

On average, 79% of graduates from the last three years (2018 to 2020) found employment within six months of graduation.

For more details on related occupations, job market information and career opportunities, see the Government of Canada website:

Program outcomes

  • Explore the strengths and weaknesses of management/supervisory styles and implications of various styles for organizational life.
  • Apply community leadership skills to encourage participation, development, and sustainability in a community or organization within the not-for-profit sector.
  • Use project management tools and techniques to complete events or projects within their scope.
  • Implement strategies to support fundraising or fund development activities that meet the organizational needs of a not-for-profit organization.
  • Apply various design, development, and quality assurance processes to measure the success and sustainability of community programs.
  • Manage the finances of a not-for-profit organization or program considering risk, investments, and fiduciary responsibilities necessary tomeet its goals.
  • Contribute to the management of human resources including volunteer and/or staff recruitment, training, performance appraisal and total rewards to promote volunteer and/or staff retention within an organization.

Program related resources

Continuing Education
Upcoming registrations

Mark your calendar with our registration dates, so you can plan your future.

Fall registration: Opens July 22, 2024
Winter registration: Opens November 4, 2024