Skip to main content




Director, Center for Nonprofit Leadership and Development at Central Michigan University

Dr. Powell joined the Department of Political Science & Public Administration in the Fall of 2015. Her primary scholarly focus is nonprofit leadership and management; specifically the organizational design and behavior of staff and volunteers. Dr. Powell earned her PhD in Public Administration from Western Michigan University and earned her Master of Management degree from Aquinas College. Prior to her faculty position she served in executive director and administrative roles at national nonprofit organizations including  Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the American Heart Association,  and the American Lung Association of  Michigan.

Emma is the advisor for the Nonprofit Leadership Student Alliance (NLSA) of Central Michigan University and the campus director for the Certified Nonprofit Professional credential (CNP). She is the internship coordinator for Political Science and Public Administration. Emma is also the campus co-liaison for The Washington Center (TWC) Internship Program

Dr. Powell awarded as a Rising Star for Community Impact in Mount Pleasant

More about Emma Powell

  • Ph.D., Western Michigan University, Public Administration (2017)
  • M.M., Aquinas College, Organizational Behavior & Management (2009)
  • B.S., Aquinas College, Business Administration and Communication (2001)
  • Organization Theory and Design
  • Organizational Behavior
  • Nonprofit Leadership and Management
  • Qualitative Methods

Courses Taught

Undergraduate Courses

  • PAD 210 WI Introduction to Public Administration
  • PAD 211 WI Introduction to Nonprofit Leadership
  • PSC 398 B Special Topics: Nonprofits & the Public Interest
  • PAD 412 WI Nonprofit Administration
  • PAD 413 Organizational Leadership & Behavior

Graduate Courses

  • PAD 523 WI Grant Writing & Management
  • PAD 620 Nonprofit Management
  • PAD 621 Board Governance & Exec Leadership
  • PAD 622 Strategic Planning Public & Nonprofit
  • PAD 775 Organization Theory & Behavior
  • PSC 790S Seoul, South Korea - Study Abroad
  • MSA 646 Foundations of Philanthropic Orgs