Institute on Philanthropy

The Institute on Philanthropy (IOP) strengthens the community by educating nonprofit professionals, volunteers, donors and community leaders in ethical and effective fundraising, marketing and board development strategies. We design our classes to meet the needs of a variety of nonprofit audiences. Our institutes serve participating nonprofits from Central Virginia and around the nation.

IOP offers coursework and week-long certification institutes in several areas for nonprofit staff, managers and board members. Our programs offer career-enhancing skills and information on cutting edge topics and new trends. More importantly, our programs offer return on your investment with program deliverables, among which are development campaigns, marketing plans and more.

Certification Institutes

IOP’s primary nonprofit education and training method is through intensive certification institutes led by nonprofit leaders in the Richmond region. Our institutes provide training in all aspects of nonprofit operations, from fundraising and development to grantwriting and management. The institute format encourages participants to work while they learn, engaging institute leaders and participants to address specific issues they face in their nonprofit organizations.

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Fund Development Institute The Fund Development Institute focuses on the “art and science” of fundraising and the work that fundraisers do. Ideal for fundraising professionals, executive directors, career switchers and development or program staff. Now Open for Registration
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Grant Writing Institute The Grant Writing Institute provides hands-on instruction to help you write grant applications for a project you are looking to get funded. Ideal for teams of grant writers and nonprofit executives. Now Open for Registration
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Nonprofit Leadership Institute The Nonprofit Leadership Institute is an immersive, comprehensive development experience for nonprofit leaders designed to elevate the art and science of leadership within the nonprofit sector. Now Open for Registration
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Marketing & Communications Institute The Marketing & Communications Institute for Nonprofits prepares you to create a successful marketing plan for your nonprofit organization, whether the focus is to raise money or awareness of your mission. Ideal for fundraising and marketing professionals and program staff. Now Open for Registration


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AI-Assisted Grant Writing Workshop for nonprofit professionals focuses on strategic integration of AI technologies, such as ChatGPT, to craft effective and personalized grant proposals. Now Open for Registration

IOP Advisory Board

The Institute on Philanthropy (IOP) Advisory Board provides invaluable feedback, direction and leadership for the Institute. Members serve renewable two-year terms as advisors to help guide the Institute and address the most urgent strategic issue facing IOP each year.

IOP Advisory Board members are chosen because they are thought leaders in their fields representing a diverse knowledge base. Each brings different expertise to the table. Members are nominated and selected based on this criteria.


Manual for Starting a Nonprofit

In 2005, students in the “Law of Nonprofit Organizations” class at the University of Richmond created a manual on how to start a nonprofit organization. It is their hope that this manual will assist individuals in establishing nonprofit organizations to address important societal needs and in operating those organizations most effectively.

International Students

If you are an international student considering coursework through the Institute on Philanthropy, you need an F-1 student visa. Information is available from the Office of International Education — follow the guidelines for SPCS Summer School Students.

CFRE Approved Program

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The University of Richmond Institute on Philanthropy is a CFRE-approved provider for continuing education. Full participation in IOP courses is applicable for points in Category 1.B - Education of the CFRE International application for initial certification and/or recertification based on the number of contact hours listed for the class.