The role of the YMCA in the origins of U.S. nonprofit management education

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Abstract

The given narrative of the origins of nonprofit management education tends to begin in the 1970s or 1980s, recognizing earlier efforts that were limited to individual professional disciplines, such as social work administration. This historical inquiry examines whether the origins of generic nonprofit management education can be traced further back. It identifies the 1911 bachelor of association science degree from the Chicago YMCA College as at least a proto-nonprofit management degree and a 1935 text by Ordway Tead, issued by the YMCA's publishing house, as a contender for the first text in generic nonprofit management.

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