There is a rich diversity of third-sector organizations—co-operatives, credit unions, non-profits, charities, community associations, social enterprises, and more—working alongside the public and private sectors to provide goods and services to individuals and communities. Some of these organizations, such as locally-owned financial services and grocery providers, have operated for decades. Others, are relatively new and work in areas ranging from renewable energy to affordable and supported housing, to mental health and addictions, and more. However, they all share a commitment to inclusive decision-making and concern about larger social-economic problems.

Offered in partnership with the Canadian Centre for the Study of Co-operatives, the Graduate ­­­­­Certificate in Social Economy, Co-operatives and Nonprofit Sector (GSECN) is designed for mid-career professionals interested in improving their understanding of the third sector.

NOTICE: After completing one online foundational course (JSGS 846), you will have the option to specialize in one of three possible streams (1) Non-profit stream, (2) Co-operative stream, or the (3) Social Economy and Government stream. Both the Non-profit and Co-operative streams can be completed entirely online, while the Social Economy and Government stream is offered through a combination of online and in-person classes.

If you are interested in the Social Economy and Government stream and live outside Regina or Saskatoon, please contact us about options that may be available to you.

Learning Objectives

Comprised of three graduate-level classes, the certificate covers a range of topics and issues, including:

  • Organizational forms in the social economy sector (including co-operatives, nonprofits, social enterprises and more);
  • Principles of good governance in the social economy;
  • Management and leadership excellence;
  • The interplay between the social economy and public policy;
  • Emerging forms of sector-led initiatives and inter-organizational governance; and
  • Public and community engagement strategies.

Courses

JSGS 846: Cooperatives in the New Economy Institutions Governance and Policy

All students registered in the certificate program must complete the following foundational three-credit hours course, before specializing in one of three streams:

Students interested in the Non-Profit Stream must also complete the following two three-credit hours elective courses:

Students interested in the Co-operative Stream must also complete the following two three-credit hours elective courses:

Students interested in the Social Economy & Government Stream must also complete two of the following three-credit hours elective courses:

Course Delivery Modes and Schedules

Both the Non-profit and Co-operative streams can be completed entirely online, while the Social Economy and Government stream is offered through a combination of online and in-person classes. If you are interested in the Social Economy and Government stream and live outside Regina or Saskatoon, please contact us about options that may be available to you.

Click here for the course schedule and delivery modes for the above courses.

Laddering Option

Students who have successfully completed this program may have their course work count towards a full master's degree within JSGS. Please talk with an academic advisor for more details.

Admission Requirements

University of Regina campus

Standard Admission Option

Applicants interested in this program must have completed a four-year undergraduate degree from a recognized university, with a minimum overall GPA of 70 percent in the final two years. Proof of English proficiency may be required for international applicants and for applicants whose first language is not English. 

Mid-Career Admission Option

There is also a mid-career option for admission, through which prospective students with at least five years of government or non-profit organization management experience may be admitted without an undergraduate degree. Proof of English proficiency is required.

University of Saskatchewan campus

Standard Admission Option

Applicants must have completed a four-year undergraduate degree from a recognized university. A cumulative weighted average of at least 70 percent must be maintained during the final two years (60 credit units). Proof of English proficiency may be required for international applicants and for applicants whose first language is not English. 

Non-Standard Admission Option

Applicants who do not meet the standard admission requirements can apply using the non‐standard application process. In this case, applicants must have completed at least one year (18 CUs) of higher education, taken a minimum five-year break from formal higher education, and possess a minimum of ten years of work experience with at least five years of management experience.

NOTICE: JSGS does not recommend graduate certificate programs to international students for the following reasons:

  • The certificates are only 3 courses (9 credit units) in length, and to be considered a full-time student, you must register in 6 credit units (2 courses) per term.
    • For example, if a graduate certificate student wants to maintain full-time status, the maximum time in the graduate certificate program would be 6 months if starting in January (encompasses Winter and Spring terms), or 8 months if starting in May (encompasses Spring and Fall terms) or September (encompasses Fall and Winter terms), and a student would need to take a fourth course and pay additional tuition to have full-time status in each term.
  • JSGS cannot guarantee that courses required for our graduate certificate programs will be available each term.
  • If a required course is unavailable, it can affect the opportunity for full-time studies.

Non-Refundable Deposit

If you are offered admission into the Social Economy, Co-operatives, and the Non-Profit Sector Graduate Certificate program, a non-refundable tuition deposit of $1,000 CAD is required to save your seat. The non-refundable deposit must be paid within 30 days of the offer of admission being made. If you enroll in the program consistent with the terms of the offer, the $1,000 deposit will be applied to your student account. If you do not enroll, the deposit is retained by JSGS.

Funding Opportunities

Value: $1,500

Offered through the Canadian Centre for the Study of Co-operatives, the Leo and Bruce Thordarson Social Economy and Co-operatives Award is offered annually to a student who is enrolled in the school's Graduate Certificate in the Social Economy, Co-operatives and Non-Profit Sector program.

The goal of the award is to support students in becoming the next generation of leaders in the co-operative and social economy sector. The successful applicant will be chosen based on: academic performance, demonstrated financial need, and the merits of the written submission.

Application procedure: Submission of a statement of no more than one page providing personal insight into the role(s) played by co-operatives, non-profits, and social enterprises in shaping your professional and/or academic career, and how this award will assist you in advancing your career. 

Application deadline: October 28, 2022

Completed applications can be submitted to jsgs@usask.ca

Value $5,000

Offered through the Canadian Centre for the Study of Co-operatives, the Hartley and Margaret Fredeen Scholarship is offered annually to a student who is conducting research on co-operatives, either entering or continuing studies in a master’s or doctoral program at the University of Saskatchewan. Students who are currently enrolled in the Graduate Certificate in the Social Economy, Co-operatives, and Nonprofit Sector (GSECN) are also eligible to apply.

The goal of the scholarship is to support students in creating and sharing knowledge about co-operatives. The successful applicant for the Hartley and Margaret Fredeen Scholarship in Co-operative Studies will be chosen based upon the applicant’s proposed research exploring the ways that co-operatives can make our lives better, whether that be locally or globally.

Application Deadline: November 1, 2022

Completed applications can be submitted to the Canadian Centre for the Study of Co-operatives at coop.studies@usask.ca 

Please note that the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy does not administer these grants. Any questions about the Canada Job Grant should be directed to the respective provincial application offices.

The Canada Job Grant (CJG) is a Canadian government funding program designed to support the upskilling of new and existing employees so that they can become more valuable to their organization. The funding program:

  • Helps public sector employers, non-profit organizations, industry associations, Indigenous government or organizations, and others train new or existing employees for available jobs; and
  • Covers 2/3 of the total training costs for existing employees (to a maximum of $10,000 per person per fiscal year). Training costs include tuition fees, mandatory student fees, textbooks, software and other required materials, and more.
  • Provides more opportunities for unemployed and underemployed workers to receive training.

CJG maintains a provincial stream for each province, except for Québec. Each individual stream has varying funding amounts for multiple grant applications and eligibility criteria. Please note that to qualify for funding, the employee will need to complete their program within a 52-week period.

Refer to the following CSJ provincial stream pages for specific eligibility criteria and application information. 

Some provincial and territorial stream grant programs have closed. Please refer to the following programs instead: 

Please note that the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy and Canadian Centre for the Study of Co-operatives do not administer these scholarships. Any questions should be directed towards Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada, the administrator of these scholarships.

Alexander Fraser Laidlaw Fellowship

Open to graduate students only, this award is sponsored by the Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada. 

The Co-operative Housing Federation of Canada established the Laidlaw Fellowship to honour Dr. Alexander Fraser Laidlaw, the father of the non-profit co-operative housing movement in Canada. The Laidlaw Award, valued at $1,000, is available to graduate students only. The award is based on the applicant’s academic record, as well as on the importance of the proposed research activities to the development of the co-op movement in Canada or abroad. 

Click here for more information on the Alexander Fraser Laidlaw Fellowship.

Amy and Tim Dauphinee Scholarship

Open to graduate students only, this award is sponsored by the Ontario Credit Union Foundation.

The Ontario Credit Union Foundation established the Amy and Tim Dauphinee Scholarship in recognition of the outstanding contribution these two leaders made to the development of the credit union movement and the Ontario Credit Union Charitable Foundation. Tim, a retired scientist from the National Research Council, and Amy, who passed away in 2010, had a strong commitment to co-operatives, education and research. Both served as local directors on a number of organizations. Amy was the first woman elected to the board of directors of Credit Union Central of Ontario and served for 22 years. The award, currently valued at $3,000, is available to graduate students only. The award will be based on the applicants' academic records and on the importance of the proposed research activities to the development of the co-op movement in Canada or abroad. 

Click here for more information on the Amy and Tim Dauphinee Scholarship.

Lemaire Co-operative Studies Award

Open to undergraduate and graduate students.

Louis Lemaire, a co-operative pioneer, dedicated much of his life to organizing co-operatives in Saskatchewan and willed part of his estate to the Co-operative College of Canada (now Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada) to support co-operative studies. Available to both undergraduate and graduate students, the Lemaire awards are intended to encourage students to undertake studies and research which will help them contribute to the development of co-operatives in Canada or elsewhere. These awards are also intended to support students who have been involved in co-operatives, preferably in leadership positions as volunteers or employees. Eligible candidates will have been involved with co-operatives, must demonstrate reasonable knowledge and understanding of co-op principles and their application, and be able to indicate how the proposed studies and research will contribute to the co-op movement. Full-time or part-time students, taking full- or partial-credit courses at any university or university-equivalent college are eligible to apply. Eligible candidates must take a minimum of one course about co-operatives. The bursaries will be awarded in multiples of $1,000 to a maximum of $3,000. The amount of the awards will be proportional to the significance and contribution of the studies to the advancement of co-operatives

The Ian MacPherson Legacy Fund

The Co-operative Development Foundation of Canada (CDF), in partnership with Co-operatives and Mutuals Canada (CMC) and the Canadian Association for Studies in Co-operation (CASC), has established a scholarship fund to commemorate Ian MacPherson and his outstanding contribution to the study and promotion of cooperatives. This fund supports student participation in research conferences, co-operative research, and co-operative involvement. Students at post-secondary institutions under the age of 35 will be given priority, with a preference for those studying or researching co-ops and presenting at an event. Applications are accepted year-round, but we recommend that you apply at least 60 days prior to the date of an event you wish to attend. 

Click here for more information on the Ian MacPherson Legacy Fund.

Tuition

Tuition and fees are subject to change. Should there be a discrepancy between the information posted on the institution's website and information posted on the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy website, the institution website should be viewed as accurate.

University of Regina campus

The tuition rate for the master’s certificate program at the University of Regina campus is approximately $1,507.50 (per 3-credit unit course) for the 2022/23 academic year (September 1, 2022, to August 31, 2023). Students must also pay mandatory graduate student fees.

University of Saskatchewan campus

The tuition rate for the master’s certificate program at the University of Saskatchewan campus is  $1,507.56 (per 3-credit unit course) for the 2022/23 academic year (September 1, 2022, to August 31, 2023)Students must also pay mandatory graduate student fees and an international surcharge (if applicable, $1,264.58 per term).

Contact Us

For more information on the Social Economy, Co-operatives, and Non-Profit Sector Certificate, please contact: