Skip navigation Jump to main navigation Jump to main navigation

Health Guidance

Masking is strongly recommended in all indoor settings. New students and faculty and staff are required to sign an updated version of the Columbia Community Compact. Learn more.
Close alert

Capstone Project

The Nonprofit Management master’s degree Capstone Projects afford a group of students the opportunity to undertake complex, real-world, client-based projects for nonprofit organizations, supervised by a faculty member.

Through the semester-long capstone project, students experience the process of organizational assimilation and integration as they tackle a discrete management project of long or short-term benefit to the client organization. The larger theoretical issues that affect nonprofit managers and their relationships with other stakeholders, both internal and external, are discussed within the context of this project-based course, which is offered during the Fall, Spring, and Summer semesters, both in-person and online.

Capstone Presentation | Spring 2022

Capstone Presentation | Spring 2022

Capstone clients and projects

Interested nonprofits approach our program with challenges that they would like our students to research, analyze, and recommend strategic solutions to address. Student skill sets required for each project range across the program’s core and elective requirements, including communications and social media marketing, fundraising, strategic planning, governance and financial management. 

Organizations are vetted by the program director and faculty and chosen because a capstone partnership meets the pedagogical requirements of the course. Clients can expect confidentially as they work with a cohort of students led by faculty who are experts in the field. Capstone projects run for an entire semester. By the end of the semester, students give a comprehensive and professional presentation and written report to their clients.

Capstone clients have included the following organizations:

Alzheimer's Foundation of America

This national organization's mission is to provide support, services and education to individuals, families and caregivers affected by Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias nationwide, and fund research for better treatment and a cure.

American Ballet Theater

American Ballet Theater's mission is to create, to present, to preserve and to extend the great repertoire of classical dancing, through exciting performances and educational programming of the highest quality, presented to the widest possible audience.

Artistic Noise

Their work in Harlem-based community settings and in detention facilities supports the positive re-entry of youth and also provides preventive care for those in need. Artistic Noise workshops allow youth to reflect on their experiences and examine complex socio-political issues in a safe and structured environment. Its mission is to bring the freedom and power of artistic practice to young people who are incarcerated, on probation, or otherwise involved in the justice system. 

Everyday Democracy

Everyday Democracy supports organizing across the country by bringing diverse groups of people together, helping them structure and facilitate community dialogue on pressing issues, and training them to use a racial equity lens to understand longstanding problems and possible solutions. Their work helps communities move conversation into action and action into lasting positive change. Everyday Democracy is a project of the Paul J. Aicher Foundation.

Groundwork

Linking communities in the pursuit of equity and sustainability, Groundwork's mission is to encourage active living and healthy eating, improve quality of life, and achieve better health outcomes for all residents, regardless of income, race, ethnicity, age, gender, or ZIP code.

Multicultural Media, Telecom and Internet Council

Since 1986, as a leading public interest tech organization, MMTC has been focused on building equity and inclusion and fought for equal access and representation in tech, media, and telecommunications through opportunity creation, awareness building, and advocacy.

National Museum of Mathematics

NYC-based MoMath, the National Museum of Mathematics, is an award-winning museum that highlights the role of mathematics in illuminating the patterns and structures all around us.  Its dynamic exhibitsgalleries, and programs are designed to stimulate inquiry, spark curiosity, and reveal the wonders of mathematics. 

Natural Resources Defense Council

NRDC works to safeguard the earth -- its people, its plants and animals, and the natural systems on which all life depends. They combine the power of more than three million members and online activists with the expertise of some 700 scientists, lawyers, and policy advocates across the globe to ensure the rights of all people to the air, the water, and the wild.

New York Academy of Science

The mission of the New York Academy of Sciences is to drive innovative solutions to society's challenges by advancing scientific research, education and policy. For more than 200 years they have convened and mobilized communities of experts, catalyzing collective action to address global challenges, and supporting scientists and engineers through every step of their careers.

NY Immigration Coalition

The NY Immigration Coalition's mission is to advocate for the rights of all immigrants in New York State.

One Goal New York

One Goal New York partners with high schools in low-income communities to ensure college and postsecondary planning, preparation, and support are not treated as extracurricular activities, but as integral components of the high school experience for all students. 

Operation BBQ Relief

Armed with a caravan of cooks, mobile pits, kitchens and volunteers, Operation BBQ Relief delivers the healing power of BBQ in times of need, feeding first responders and communities affected by natural disasters along with year-round efforts to fight hunger through The Always Serving Project® and Camp OBR™ programs.

Peace Innovation Foundation

The Peace Innovation Foundation is an independent non-profit organisation dedicated to fostering peace, stability and prosperity in developing regions of the world through the promotion of innovation and technology, focusing on education, entrepreneurship, opportunity, security, and sustainable development.

Riverside Language Program

Riverside Language Program's mission is to help new immigrants successfully integrate into life in the U.S. by rapidly improving their English language skills, providing wrap-around case management and counseling, and incorporating workforce development skills, digital literacy, and civics into daily instruction. They provide services and support to recently-arrived immigrants, asylum seekers, and refugee adults currently living in New York City.

Smithsonian Anacostia Community Museum

The Smithsonian’s Anacostia Community Museum (ACM) aspires to illuminate and share the untold, and often overlooked stories of people furthest from opportunity in the Greater Washington D.C. region. Their mission is to tell stories of everyday people making impactful changes, who use their collective power to tackle complex issues and advance a more equitable future for all. Thier hope is to affirm, uplift, and inspire those who visit us to translate their ideas into action.

Tuesday's Children

Tuesday’s Children meets individuals and families of service members where they are on their grief journey following a loss due to military service, mass violence, or acts of terrorism. Formed in the aftermath of the terrorist attacks of Tuesday, September 11, 2001, their mission is to ensure that families of the fallen soldiers due to the events of 9/11, post-9/11 military service, or other acts of mass violence and terrorism always have a comforting place to turn to for support and community.

Urban Justice Center: Safety Net Project

The Urban Justice Center's Safety Net Project's mission is to provide a platform for dynamic advocates to fuel social change, leading the way for a just, fair, and decent society. Their work is designed to preserve and strengthen families and communities by fighting to prevent evictions, illegal rent increases, uninhabitable living conditions, and other attacks on the social safety net.

Young Center for Immigrant Children's Rights

The Young Center for Immigrant Children's Rights's mission is to champion the rights and best interests of unaccompanied immigrant children, making sure that wherever they land, whether here in the U.S. or in their home country, they are safe.