Credits and costs
Learn DEI and Leadership Principles
For many businesses, DEI initiatives are playing a greater role in day-to-day operations as well as long-term planning. Accordingly, top organizations are seeking CEOs and other senior leaders who understand the importance of DEI and how it can directly impact employee satisfaction, productivity, and the bottom line. This program can prepare leaders to proactively transform an organization into a diverse and ethical workplace by creating a positive and affirming culture.
Become a DEI Leader and Change Manager
As a student in this online diversity program, you can become a progressive leader and change manager by:
- developing and implementing a personal diversity leadership improvement plan
- learning to make mindful and ethical decisions that support positive, sustainable change in an organization
- gaining the deep understanding needed to analyze and offer solutions to complex issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion
- understanding positive organizational behavior and how it empowers employees to be their best possible selves for personal and career advancement
Why Earn an Online Leadership Certificate?
This certificate is an excellent credential for leaders and supervisors who are looking to add a DEI focus to their management style. This online DEI program fosters a collaborative academic environment where CEOs, HR managers, supervisors, and other professionals work together to learn the critical importance of diversity, equity, and inclusion in every workplace. The online program can also help HR professionals prepare for SHRM certification.
A Trusted Leader in Online Education
Penn State has a history of more than 100 years of distance education, and World Campus has been a leader in online learning for more than two decades. Our online learning environment offers the same quality education that our students experience on campus.
How Online Learning Works at Penn State
This program’s convenient online format gives you the flexibility you need to study around your busy schedule. You can skip the lengthy commute without sacrificing the quality of your education and prepare yourself for more rewarding career opportunities without leaving your home.
Information for Military and Veterans
Are you a member of the military, a veteran, or a military spouse? Please visit our military website for additional information regarding financial aid, transfer credits, or application instructions.
Penn State's 12-credit online Graduate Certificate in Leading in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion program consists of 3 required credits and 9 elective credits. All courses must be completed with a grade of C or better and an overall GPA of 3.0. Your education will blend independent study with peer-to-peer interaction. You'll complete weekly assignments, readings, discussions, and occasional group work, as well as exams and other activities designed to enhance your learning outcomes — all at times that are most convenient for you.
Required Courses (3 credits)
Leading Positive Ethical Change (select 3 credits)
Demonstrating Business Case for Diversity (select 3 credits)
Specialized Competencies for DEI Leaders (select 3 credits)
If you're ready to see when your courses will be offered, visit our public LionPATH course search (opens in new window) to start planning ahead.
Costs and Financial Aid
Graduate tuition is calculated based on the number of credits for which you register. Tuition is due shortly after each semester begins and rates are assessed every semester of enrollment.
|How many credits do you plan to take per semester?||Cost|
|11 or fewer||$1,017 per credit|
|12 or more||$12,203 per semester|
|How many credits do you plan to take per semester?||Cost|
|11 or fewer||$1,027 per credit|
|12 or more||$12,325 per semester|
Financial Aid and Military Benefits
Some students may qualify for financial aid. Take the time to research financial aid, scholarships, and payment options as you prepare to apply. Military service members, veterans, and their spouses or dependents should explore these potential military education benefits and financial aid opportunities, as well.
Paying for Your Certificate
Students pursuing a certificate are considered "nondegree," a status that is not eligible for federal student aid, including the Federal Direct Stafford Loan program. A private alternative loan may be an option to consider.
Additionally, Penn State offers many ways to pay for your education, including an installment plan and third-party payments. Penn State World Campus also offers an Employer Reimbursement and Tuition Deferment Plan. Learn more about the options for paying for your education.
Students pursuing a degree and meeting all other eligibility requirements may qualify for financial aid.
How to Apply
Deadlines and Important Dates
Your degree application, including receipt of all transcripts, should be received by the following deadlines to be considered complete.
- Spring Deadline: Apply by November 15 to start January 8
- Summer Deadline: Apply by April 15 to start May 13
- Fall Deadline: Apply by July 15, 2024, to start August 26, 2024
If you have questions about the admissions process, contact our admissions counselors.
For admission to the Graduate School, an applicant must hold either (1) a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution or (2) a tertiary (postsecondary) degree that is deemed comparable to a four-year bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited U.S. institution. This degree must be from an officially recognized degree-granting institution in the country in which it operates.
What You Need
Applications are submitted electronically and include a nonrefundable application fee. You will need to upload the following items as part of your application:
Official transcripts from each institution attended, regardless of the number of credits or semesters completed. Transcripts not in English must be accompanied by a certified translation. Penn State alumni do not need to request transcripts for credits earned at Penn State but must list Penn State as part of their academic history. If you are admitted, you will be asked to send an additional official transcript. You will receive instructions at that time.
Grade-Point Average (GPA) — GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in the final two years of undergraduate studies or in your most recent graduate degree is required.
GRE or GMAT scores are NOT required for admission. (NOTE: based on proposal)
English Proficiency — The language of instruction at Penn State is English. With some exceptions, international applicants must take and submit scores for the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Minimum test scores and exceptions are found in the English Proficiency section on the Graduate School's "Requirements for Graduate Admission" page. Visit the TOEFL website for testing information. Penn State's institutional code is 2660.
Start Your Application
You can begin your online application at any time. Your progress within the online application system will be saved as you go, allowing you to return at any point as you gather additional information and required materials.
- Choose "Certificate Admission" as the enrollment type
- Choose "WORLD CAMPUS" as the campus
- Choose "Leading in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion" as the certificate
Checking Your Status
You can check the status of your application by using the same login information established for the online application form.
Review the technical requirements for this degree program.
Start or Advance Your Career
Start or Advance Your Career
You can use the knowledge gained from this program and the support of Penn State career resources to pursue careers in a variety of fields, depending on your goals.
For general questions about the application process, please contact:
World Campus Admissions Counselors
Veronica M. Godshalk
DegreePh.D., Business Administration, Drexel University
DegreeM.S., Organizational Dynamics, University of Pennsylvania
Dr. Veronica (M. Godshalk is a professor of management and associate chief academic officer at Penn State Great Valley. She teaches courses in management, leadership, and strategy. She is the recipient of several teaching awards, including the Teaching and Learning with Technology Fellowship. Dr. Godshalk has published many books and articles; her research interests include career management and mentoring, as well as pedagogy. She recently published a fifth edition of Career Management for Life. Dr. Godshalk worked in the computer industry in sales prior to entering academia.
DegreePh.D., Industrial Relations and Human Resources, Rutgers University
DegreeM.A., Communication, University of Delaware
DegreeB.A., Speech Communication, Penn State
Dr. Denise Potosky teaches graduate courses in management, human resources, people analytics, and leadership communication. Her research advances theory, strategies, and practices in cross-cultural adjustment, leading change, team coordination, personnel assessment, and technology-mediated communication. An internationally recognized scholar, she has led numerous research seminars for faculty and doctoral students at several institutions. Her work has been published in leading journals, including the Academy of Management Review, Personnel Psychology, and Human Resource Management Review.
DegreePh.D., Chemistry, University of Florida
DegreeMBA, Penn State
DegreeB.A., Chemistry, Penn State
Dr. Cynthia Walton teaches entrepreneurship, economics, organizational behavior, and strategic management. She holds a Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of Florida, where she specialized in bioinorganic chemistry, researching metallocene modified proteins for use as anti-cancer reagents. At the University of Florida, she earned the DuPont Teaching Award twice and the President’s Outstanding Student Award twice. Prior to joining Penn State, Dr. Walton was the group leader of paper chemicals for Houghton International and a research scientist at Hercules, Inc.