Professional Certificate in Grant Writing

With a Professional Certificate in Grant Writing from SDSU Global Campus, you’ll learn how to research and construct grant proposals that are clear, persuasive, and aligned with the priorities of your funders.


About the Program

San Diego and California are home to thousands of nonprofit organizations. These organizations must compete for funding in an increasingly challenging funding environment. Grant writing is a key component of securing funding for many of San Diego’s most dynamic organizations. Nonprofits, school districts, and local governments regularly seek staff and consultants with comprehensive writing, research, and strategic skills to obtain grant funding.


Total Estimated Cost

10 weeks

Min. Completion Time

Online + Asynchronous

Course Format

Build your grant writing skills and learn how to market yourself to employers by earning a Professional Certificate in Grant Writing from SDSU Global Campus. In as few as 10 weeks, you’ll learn how to develop compelling grant proposals that will help your organization obtain the funding it needs.

Is This Program Right for Me?

Are you an SDSU Alumni Lifetime Member? If so, click here to learn more about how you can receive 20% off registration for this program.

Your organization needs funding. SDSU’s Grant Writing Certificate program can help you get them. Whether you’re new to grant writing, or you’re taking on a new role in your organization, our program can show you how to develop compelling, effective grant proposals in just 10 weeks.

SDSU’s online grant writing courses will show you how to get funds for a variety of organizations, including:

  • Community Food Banks
  • Mentoring Programs
  • Health Clinics
  • Art Organizations
  • Environmental Organizations
  • School Districts
  • Local Governments
  • Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs)

This program is ideal for current and aspiring grant writers working full-time and freelancing, as well as:

  • Employees from nonprofit organizations
  • Employees from city and county governments, chambers of commerce
  • Individuals working in education (private and public)
  • Public health professionals
  • Social workers
  • Independent consultants/ grant writers

This program is focused on nonprofit and tax-exempt organizations that provide charitable or public benefit services. The course is not oriented toward research grants or grants for individuals or businesses.

SDSU is a State-approved provider for the Federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). If you’re unemployed or underemployed, you may be eligible to receive full or partial tuition assistance on this program. Click here to learn more.

What Can I Learn?

SDSU’s online grant writing courses will show you how to craft grant proposals that will help your organization compete in an increasingly competitive funding environment.

Employers look for both training and experience in their grant writers. This grant writing program will help you:

  • Build the foundational knowledge you need to identify and research grant prospects.
  • Write a proposal.
  • Work to help nonprofit leaders strategically position their organizations to succeed.
  • Learn how to interview staff and volunteers to get the information you need to develop highly-effective grant proposals.
  • Combine your technical writing skills with the ability to understand guidelines, communicate clearly and persuasively with your audience.
  • Develop a compelling program narrative and budget.
  • Gain a deeper understanding of nonprofit management and programming.
  • Learn how to strengthen an organization to better compete for funds.

The program consists of two 25-hour online courses:

  • Introduction to Grants and Funding Research is designed for those with no or little prior experience developing grant proposals. This course requires approximately 3-4 hours of work per week, including homework.
  • Grant Proposal Development will provide you with an opportunity to practice and develop grant writing skills. This course requires approximately 4-6 hours of work per week, including homework.

Lessons in both courses are pre-recorded, which means that you can watch them on your schedule. You’ll also connect with your instructor one-on-one via email and the course’s discussion board.

To earn your Professional Certificate in Grant Writing, you’ll need to complete both courses.

Meet Your Instructor

More about Jay KatzLearn how to craft winning grant proposals from grant writing expert Jay Katz. In 1995, Jay founded Grants West a San Diego-based organization that provides grant proposal writing services in California, Colorado, and all over the country. Over the past 25 years, he’s helped hundreds of organizations raise $190 million through 1,300 funded grants and awards.

Get Help from the SDSU Writing Center

When you join the program, you’ll be able to get valuable feedback on your writing from the San Diego State University Writing Center. Click here to learn more.

Career Outcomes

Labor Analysis

Fundraising Manager — Nationwide

Job Postings
Job postings in the last 12 months

Projected Growth
Projected job growth in the next 10 years

Salary Range
Average salary of graduates

Source: Burning Glass/Emsi, 2022

With budget cuts and revenue shortages across the country, today’s funding environment is fiercer than ever before. As nonprofit organizations compete for funds, they’re seeking well-trained grant writers to research and develop highly-effective grant proposals.

Nationwide employment opportunities for grant writers are projected to grow by more than 10% over the next decade. Compensation is varied — according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, many grant writers are self-employed, and they usually charge a flat fee or an hourly rate for their services.

According to Glassdoor, the national average salary for a grant writer is $51,395, and can range from $33,000 to over $80,000 per year, depending on your experience level, location, and other factors.

Why Should You Choose Us?


All courses are 100% online, self-paced, and accessible from anywhere in the world, which makes this grant writing program ideal for working professionals and busy students. You can complete the program in as few as 10 weeks, or take up to two years to complete all your courses.

Highly-Experienced Instructor

This grant writing program is led by expert grant writer Jay Katz. He brings over 25 years of professional grant writing experience to every virtual lesson. Through his expertise, you’ll learn what works — and what doesn’t — for today’s grant writers.


As one of the top 100 public colleges in the country, when you earn a certificate from San Diego State University, you’re putting a name on your résumé that will help you stand out in the professional world.