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New Rutgers Certificate Program Helps Public and Nonprofit Managers Sharpen Communication Skills

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Public and nonprofit leaders and managers can learn skills and strategies for communicating effectively with their constituents in a new Leadership Certificate series offered by the Rutgers Center for Executive Leadership in Government (CELG) starting in May.

“Public Communications for Public and Nonprofit Managers” is a four-part “boot camp” offered from 1:30 to 4 p.m. on May 29 and June 5, 12 and 19. All sessions will be held at CELG’s classrooms at 303 George St.

Four topics critical to effective public communications will be covered:

  • Communication Planning for Municipal and Nonprofit Leaders and Managers
  • Social Media & Community Engagement
  • Emergency Communications Planning for the Municipal Leader
  • Working with the News Media: Getting Key Messages Reported Accurately

The programs will be taught by experienced practitioners, including municipal leaders.

“We’re calling this a public communications ‘boot camp’ because each seminar will provide an in-depth learning experience with hands-on exercises and discussions of real-life situations and case studies,” said Angie McGuire, Ph.D., associate director of CELG.

McGuire said the program was created in response to issues raised by municipal managers at a forum sponsored by the Rutgers Center for Government Services following Superstorm Sandy in 2012. The participants identified communication/information as one of the areas of critical importance in dealing with the storm and its aftermath.  A checklist compiled from the forum’s recommendation includes a section on this topic.

Participants must attend all four sessions to receive a certificate. For more information about the program, or to register, go online to the program’s website, send email to, or call (732) 932-6998, ext. 603.

CELG is a unit of the Center for Government Services. Its mission involves strengthening the leadership capacity of individuals and teams responsible for delivering public and not-for-profit programs in New Jersey and beyond.  In addition to its Leadership Certificate Series, CELG offers the Mini-MPA™ program in New Brunswick.  CELG, in collaboration with the Department of Public Policy and Administration at Rutgers-Camden, also offers an Executive Master’s in Public Administration (EMPA), with classes at Mercer County Community College in West Windsor.

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