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Nonprofit Business & Social Enterprise major launched

May 9, 2012 | Ian Richardson


Evangel University’s Department of Business will launch a new and unique Nonprofit Business & Social Enterprise major beginning in the fall 2012 semester.

The major will include six new courses specifically focused on the ways in which administration of nonprofit organizations often differ from for-profit organizations.

“This new program will appeal to a lot of students who enjoy business and also have a passion to serve others,” said Bernie Dana, Department Chair. According to Dana, there are only a few universities that offer this kind of program as an undergraduate major.

Initial funding for the new program will come through a $45,000 grant from the Vetter Foundation, based in Omaha, Nebraska.

See local news coverage of the new program

“I was intrigued when Bernie approached me about how this new business major at Evangel will enable students to apply business concepts to improve the management and promotion of humanitarian, missions, and social enterprise endeavors,” said Jack Vetter.

The Vetter Foundation was established in 1992 as a private foundation to provide material support for sustainable missions and humanitarian projects.

The $45,000 grant will be paid in equal installments over the next three years.

“This grant will cover the cost of subject matter experts to serve as adjunct faculty for the new courses, as well as to help students in the major with travel expenses for the required field experience,” said Dana.

New courses in the Nonprofit Business & Social Enterprise major will include:

  • The Theory and Practice of Philanthropy
  • Nonprofit Financial Management
  • Nonprofit Governance and Law
  • Volunteer Engagement and Resource Management
  • Nonprofit Marketing and Promotion
  • Introduction to Social Enterprise

“These courses will dovetail with Evangel’s traditional business curriculum and electives,” said Dana. “The new program is designed to enable students to integrate business courses into a wide range of vocational areas such as social work, criminal justice, intercultural studies (missions), digital arts, music or even recreation.”

Evangel’s Department of Business offers majors in accounting, finance, management, marketing, public administration and business education. They also offer a master’s degree in organizational leadership.


Vetter’s involvement at home and abroad

Vetter and his wife, Eldora, are the founders of Vetter Health Services, a for-profit group of 32 nursing homes and retirement living facilities in a five state region of the Midwest — including Creekside at Elfindale and the Manor at Elfindale in Springfield, Missouri.

Vetter has also developed and operates Water for the World, a nonprofit water drilling and development company in Kenya, Africa.

“Our Foundation also provides support for organizations like Convoy of Hope, because the way in which they operate is good business,” said Vetter.

“We see this opportunity to help develop Evangel students, with these skills and interests, as a good investment of the God-given resources that we have reserved for this purpose.”

Jack and Eldora Vetter began Vetter Health Services (VHS) in 1975 with the acquisition of one nursing home in rural Nebraska. Their 32 facilities are located in Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, Wyoming and Missouri.

Bernie Dana served as the executive vice president of VHS until his retirement to join the faculty at Evangel University in 2001.

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