Frequently Asked Questions

Check out detailed information regarding MSAI eligibility, registration, requirements,  pricing and payment.


Eligibility | Registration | Requirements | CMSM Requirements | Pricing & Payment


Who can participate in the Main Street America Institute (MSAI)?
The Main Street America Institute’s new online and onsite training opportunities are open to all who are interested in gaining a deeper understanding of preservation-based community transformation and leadership development.

Do I need to pursue a certificate program or the Main Street America Revitalization Professional (MSARP) credential to participate?
No. All workshops and online courses can be taken á la carte!


How do I register for online courses and workshops?
You can register for all online courses and workshops at http://mainstreet.inreachce.com/

When can I register for online courses and workshops?
Registration for the Main Street America Institute coursework opens at least 45 days before the start of each online course and three months in advance of workshops. Courses will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis! The Main Street America Institute does not guarantee the availability of any course listed; however, it will use its best efforts to ensure the up-to-date accuracy of its course offerings in a timely manner.

Will these courses fill up?
Yes! There is a limit to the number of people who can register for each course. Registration operates on a first-come, first-served basis. Once a given course has reached capacity, registration for that course will close.

What if the course I’m interested in is full?
You may opt to be put on a waiting list for that course by sending an email to MSAI@savingplaces.org. Depending on the number of interested participants, new sections of the course may be opened.

What happens if I sign up for a course or workshop and am unable to participate?
Registrants must cancel at least 15 days in advance of the start date of an online course and 30 days in advance of a workshop to receive a full refund minus a $25 processing fee. Please note: Each session will be recorded so that registrants who are unable to attend will be able to view courses on demand starting 48 hours after each live event.


What requirements do I need to fulfill to receive credit for coursework?
To receive credit for the online courses, participants will be required to submit an assignment or pass (75% or higher) a 10–15 multiple choice quiz each week. Assignments and quizzes may vary course to course, but typically do not require more than 30 minutes each week to complete. To receive credit for the workshops, participants will be required to complete and pass an essay examination. Participants must also submit an evaluation at the end of each online course or workshop administered through the InReach platform.

Do I need to take courses in a certain order?
No – courses can be completed in any order. There are no prerequisites for any MSAI courses and participants can begin coursework at any time during the year.

Do I need to complete the coursework within a certain timeframe to receive either certificate or the MSARP credential?
Yes. If you are pursuing a certificate or the MSARP credential, you must complete all requirements within 24 months of when you begin the first course.

Are there continuing education requirements to maintain MSARP credential?
There are no continuing education requirements, but we encourage participants to continue to strengthen their skill set and knowledge base by completing additional coursework that will be developed and rolled out annually.

Certified Main Street Manager Requirements (those who completed the former Main Street Certification Institute before 2008)

I’m already a Certified Main Street Manager, what do I need to do to add Main Street America Revitalization Professional to my credentials?
If you completed the former Main Street Certification Institute before 2008 and are interested in achieving the MSARP credential, you are required to complete a reduced course load of any five online courses from the MSAI catalog. You must also complete both the Leadership Development Workshop and the Community Transformation Workshop within a 24 month period. 

Please note: If you are interested in the individual certificate programs for Leadership Development or Community Transformation, you must complete all the required coursework for that certificate.

Can I continue to use my Certified Main Street Manager credential?
Yes. However, we encourage Main Street professionals to pursue the new MSARP credential to continue to strengthen and enrich their skill set.

Pricing and Payment

If I am interested in achieving the MSARP credential, do I need to pay for the entire cost in advance?
No. Participants will register and pay for each course á la carte as they roll-out. Registration will typically open at least 45 days in advance of each course.  If you are interested in paying for the full cost of the MSARP credential or a certificate program upfront, please contact MSAI@savingplaces.org for more information.

Are there additional fees to receive a certificate or the MSARP credential?
There are no additional fees to receive either certificate. To receive the MSARP credential, there will be an additional $150 fee for the final examination.

Are hotel and travel costs included in the price of the onsite workshops?
No, but some meals will be provided.

Will there be grants or scholarships available?
The National Main Street Center is not able to provide grants or scholarships at this time.

About MSAI

Download a one-page overview of our targeted professional development training program aimed to equip downtown and commercial district leaders with the tools they need to lead results-oriented and preservation-based community revitalization organizations.


Focus Areas

The MSAI is comprised of two distinct certificate programs – the Leadership Development Certificate program and the Community Transformation Certificate program. Expand your capabilities and begin on your professional development journey today!


Course Offerings

The Main Street America Institute offers a comprehensive, intensive, and yet convenient curriculum structure that supports professional career development and growth through lifelong learning opportunities. Check out our online and in-person learning opportunities.