PNY Core: Philanthropy 101

Informing the Context for Philanthropic Work

Philanthropy 101 is a five-part series that helps all staff new to philanthropy better understand the sector. It is for PNY members only. The curriculum was developed in partnership with the Dorothy A. Johnson Center for Philanthropy's Grantmaking School team. It is a part of our PNY Core offerings.

This interactive course will provide a historical overview of philanthropy, review a foundation's leadership and governance, provide an overview of grantmaking, debate the current big issues in philanthropy, and explore the various roles within philanthropy.

Philanthropy 101 takes place over five Friday morning sessions across Fall and Winter and is relevant to staff in any position at a grantmaking organization. The series was piloted in 2016-2017 and is a cohort-based program similar to our long-standing and successful Essential Skills and Strategies for New Grantmakers (ESS). The five modules will build on each other, and participants are expected to commit to attending all five

Who should attend?

Anyone who has joined the philanthropic sector within the last 1 to 2 years or is interested in a refresher. The course is available for ALL roles. 

2021 series

Friday, October 1 - So You're Working For A Foundation... Power and Your New Community
Presenters: Yi-Ching Lin, Philanthropy New York; Marlon Williams, Philanthropy New York

Helps to ground you in the role you play within your new organization and within your professional and personal networks.

Friday, October 15 - Speaking the Same Language
Presenter: Jason McGill, Justice Associates, LLC

Provides a broad overview of the philanthropic sector, from what motivates philanthropies to give to identifying the types of grantmakers, to discussing the role of the nonprofit sector as a service provider, and its relationship with both the private and public sectors.

Friday, October 29 -  Fundamentals of Grantmaking
Presenters: Danielle Pulliam, The Pinkerton Foundation; Tarik Ward, ELMA Philanthropic Services

Offers a look into the core cycle of how foundations make grants, as well as provides an overview of how foundations give, ways to manage relationships with grantees, and discuss where implicit bias plays a role in grantmaking.

Friday, November 12 - Foundation Governance and Legal Issues
Presenters: Kenneth Austin, The Wallace Foundation; Nick Hodges, Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors

Takes a dive into what is a 501(c)3, identifying who philanthropy is accountable to, foundation board responsibilities, and reviewing key legal and ethical issues in grantmaking through scenarios and guiding principles.

Friday, December 10 - The Big Conversations in Philanthropy
Presenters: Rini Banerjee, Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation; Doug Bauer, The Clark Foundation

Pits seasoned philanthropists, one-on-one, in robust debates around the philanthropic topics of the century.


For any questions, comments, and/or recommendations, please contact Carolyn Peters, Manager of Learning.