Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)


School of Education


Leadership Studies


Organization & Leadership EdD

First Advisor

Desiree Zerquera

Second Advisor

Genevieve Negrón-Gonzales

Third Advisor

Rosa Jiménez


The nonprofit sector has grown from a few charities, based on religious affiliation, to a multi-billion-dollar sector that supports the United States of America’s economic stability. As a result, the need for nonprofit management education has increased over the last three decades from 1990 to 2019 (O’Neill, 2005; Mirabella, 2014). However, most of the classes taught in nonprofit programs across the US focus on the transactional aspect of nonprofit leadership (Mirabella, 2014; Wang & Ashcraft, 2012). The purpose of this study is to gain a better understanding of the ways critical perspectives are engaged within nonprofit management education programs by critical scholars of color and how these Critical scholars of color navigate through the neoliberal tensions of higher education that limits or support their research, scholarship, and teaching. This study advocate for the incorporation of critical perspective while shedding light on how Critical scholars of color navigate and negotiate the pressures of neoliberalism to incorporate critical perspectives to understand their struggle, determination, and resistance. Through qualitative research of semi-structured interview inquiry, five critical scholars of color were interviewed over one year to explore their background and lived experience. From their stories, the data shows (1) criticality in nonprofit management education exist on a spectrum influenced by multi-disciplinary scholarships and lived experiences of the scholars (2) participants expressed extreme pressures to teach, do service, and publish, and these pressures present themselves in both formal and informal ways, and (3) a safe and inclusive environment is key to faculty member’s productivity.