Real Estate

  • Tom Thibodeau
  • 303.735.4021
  • Koelbel S350K

MBA Admissions

  • Andrea Young
  • 303.492.8712
Contact Us
Yes, send me more information about the MBA Track on Real Estate Development.
This form does not yet contain any fields.
    • “The students that come out of the CU Real Estate Center are as good as it gets. They are extremely well prepared for the real estate business.”
    • Mary Sullivan
      Senior Managing Director

    MBA Track in Real Estate Development Management

    Dan Ivanoff (MBA ’86, MS ’87), Managing Partner of Schnitzer West, made a generous investment to establish the new Dan & Laurie Ivanoff MBA Real Estate Development Management track. This program spans business and engineering in both academic and professional settings. We are excited to enroll our inaugural class of Real Estate Development students.

    Jump start your real estate career with the MBA Real Estate Development Management track. Our program fosters skill development and knowledge creation in the areas of real estate, finance, and engineering—the combination of which promotes a more robust understanding of construction management.

    Our curriculum is specially designed and our network of professional mentors is unlike any in the nation. We offer MBA students an experiential learning program that gives them a decided advantage when competing for highly sought-after real estate positions. We’re proud of our 90% placement rate for MBA students affiliated with the real estate program.

    Info Sheet

    Meet Dan Ivanoff


    Dan Ivanoff is the founder and managing investment partner of Schnitzer West LLC, one of the region’s premier fastest growing real estate investment, development and property management companies. “Outperform The Expected” is Schnitzer West’s philosophy, which is reflected in a unique combination of research and analytics, highly disciplined management and entrepreneurial spirit. Under his leadership, Schnitzer West has become recognized for creating innovative workplaces and living spaces, for delivering superior-to-market returns and for its value-creation approach to investment management.

    MBA Admissions

    Students interested in being a part of the Real Estate Development track must meet admissions guidelines as set by the Leeds MBA Program. Applications for admission are accepted for the fall semester only.

    More Info


    Our Real Estate Development Management faculty includes Tom Thibodeau, one of the nation’s top real estate finance professors and academic researchers, and Amy Javernick-Will, renowned researcher in the area of project-based organizations in the architecture, engineering and construction industry.

    Thomas G. Thibodeau
    Department of Finance

    Amy Javernick-Will
    Assistant Professor
    Department of Civil, Environmental and Architectural Engineering



    The Leeds MBA program presents robust offerings in the functional areas of business - finance, management, marketing, and operations and information management. Specializing in Real Estate Development Management provides industry expertise and networking opportunities that place you at the leading edge of real estate. In addition to core MBA classes, the Real Estate Development Management track includes the following coursework:

    MBAX 6600: Principles of Real Estate

    The course will introduce MBA students to real estate, with an emphasis on the commercial sector. The lectures will survey topics in real estate development, economics, finance, valuation, law, planning, brokerage, management, investment, deal structure, and sustainability. The course begins with broad overviews of real estate property and capital markets. It will then explore the subject areas of planning and development, market research, acquisitions, law, brokerage and asset management. We will cover major real estate topics, including office, retail, industrial, multifamily and mixed use. Included in our study will be the increasingly important aspect of sustainability. Other key aspects we will study will be the public sector’s regulatory role, and capital and financing requirements and execution. Additionally, if requested by the class, the instructor will make himself available either before or after class to discuss other aspects of real estate, business, careers, and so forth.


    MBAX 6640: Real Estate (Transactions) Law

    This course is intended to cover many of the basic legal concepts relevant to, and inherent in, the real estate business. While many traditional real property law concepts will be covered in the course, the course is intended to introduce the student to the transactional legal aspects of the real estate business, including acquisition, disposition, development, investment, management, leasing, and workouts, including tax implications. At the conclusion of the course, students are expected to have acquired a basic understanding of these principles so they will have the ability to function with respect to these matters in many of the various aspects of the real estate business. In order to facilitate this process, examples and cases will be utilized in order to illustrate the principles being covered.


    MBAX 6610: Real Estate Finance and Investments

    The primary objectives of this course are to: (1) conduct income property investment analyses; (2) develop the technical competence necessary to structure real estate transactions; and (3) understand the financial assets securitized by real estate. The student will analyze income properties using Excel and ARGUS-DCF®. Techniques for structuring real estate transactions examined in this course include lender participations, sale-leasebacks, joint ventures, and real estate syndications. Students are required to use ARGUS-DCF® in this class. ARGUS-DCF® is widely used throughout the real estate industry by equity investors, lenders, commercial brokers, appraisers, and property managers to analyze and manage income-producing (e.g., apartments and commercial) properties. The students will receive instruction on how to use ARGUS-DCF® during class. The instructor is also willing to schedule additional sessions for ARGUS-DCF® training. The take-home portion of the mid-term exam will require students to use ARGUS-DCF® to analyze an income-producing property. The secondary market for mortgages and mortgage backed securities (MBSs) will be examined in some detail. Topics covered include a survey of the private and public institutions that participate in the secondary mortgage market; pooling mortgages to create a MBS; and pricing MBSs. The course will examine both single-family property MBSs and commercial property mortgage backed securities (CMBSs). The homogeneity of the mortgage pool, prepayment risk, and default risk are examined in some detail. The course will also examine real estate investment trusts (REITs) and returns to real estate investments.


    MBAX 6630: Real Estate Economics

    The course begins with an overview of residential and commercial property markets. We will identify the underlying economic determinants of real estate supply and demand, market equilibrium and short- and long-run adjustments to disequilibrium (e.g., cycles). The course then describes the three major approaches to estimating real property value: market (or sales) comparison, the income approach, and the cost approach. These techniques will be used to estimate market values for both residential and commercial properties. The course will then examine real estate market behavior. We will examine various theories of land price determination and use these models to understand how the private market allocates land to competing residential, office, retail, industrial/warehouse, hotel, and other end users. This course draws heavily from topics taught in traditional urban and regional economics courses and treats real estate like any other scarce resource allocated in a market-oriented economy. The student will examine how factors influencing the demand for real estate interact with the factors influencing the supply of real estate to determine market rents and how the flow of future expected income is capitalized to yield the market price of the property. The course will also examine the roles that local, state, and federal governments have in real estate market outcomes. Finally, the course includes an examination of three special topics: affordable housing, resort markets, and transit-oriented development.


    One of: MBAX 6500: Management of Organization Change, MBAX 6530: Negotiating and Conflict Management, or Elective

    MBAX 6620: Real Estate Project Competition

    Develops skills in real estate decision making. Teams design, complete, and present a real estate project in a competition forum. Team members organize and assign responsibilities, interact with real estate professionals, and apply appropriate quantitative and qualitative tools and procedures.


    BADM 6940: Land Use Law

    This course examines the Federal, state and local regulations governing land use in the United States and surveys the basic principles of urban planning and public finance. The course describes the basic tools that governments use to control land use: Euclidean zoning, nuisance law, police power, eminent domain and takings, planned unit developments, historic preservation, wetlands and flood zones, airports, endangered species, view restrictions, and environmental law. The course then reviews the literature on growth management and sustainable real estate development. Finally, the course examines the techniques that governments and real estate developers use to finance new construction: public finance, urban renewal and special districts.


    CVEN 5836: Construction Engineering & Management Fundamentals

    The purpose of the course is to provide an overview of the construction industry to establish a foundation for subsequent graduate courses in construction engineering and management. The intended audience for this course is a student with limited prior construction experience or education. Students will be exposed to projects of varying funding sources, contracts, scope and complexity. Project phases will be established including planning, funding, design, construction, turnover, operation and maintenance. The course will focus on fundamental construction cost estimating, scheduling, delivery systems, contractual relationships, key contract clauses, risk allocation, building materials/systems and project controls. Special attention will be paid to emerging technologies and industry trends.


    CVEN 5206: Design Development

    Developers must bring together multiple parties (i.e. contractors, architects, engineers, lawyers, bankers, city planners, etc.) to take a project from conception through development. In many ways, they are the conductor of an orchestra. Because the development process is a critical and necessary component to building, engineers and contractors working in the AEC industry should have a basic knowledge of the process. Whatever your future plans, gaining an understanding of the teams, phases, financial elements and building components will enable you to better understand how your specialty relates to the overall project, how to manage the design/build components of a development project, and should enable you to better communicate and understand the concerns of the other team members during the project.


    CVEN 5246: Legal Aspects of Construction

    Anyone who is planning a career in construction, design, project management or real estate should be familiar with construction law. Construction is perhaps the most litigious industry in the country and virtually everyone working in construction will sooner or later become involved in a legal dispute. This course will not turn you into a lawyer, but it should provide you will enough knowledge to spot legal issues when they arise during your work.

    This course is designed to acquaint the students with the basic principles and practices of construction law. Although construction law isn't normally considered a single, identifiable body of law, there are a large and growing number of attorneys who practice as construction lawyers and there are many engineers (claims consultants) who specialize in supporting the litigation process. Generally, construction law consists of contract law, professional liability issues, land use issues and tort law. We will not spend any significant time on land use issues. Rather, we will concentrate on the more common areas of construction loses and disputes.



    LEED Certification

    In partnership with the U.S. Green Building Council Colorado Chapter, the CU Real Estate Center offers students a unique opportunity to prepare for and take the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, or LEED, Green Associate exam.

    We're serious about sustainable real estate development practices. So are our students. Regardless of the role a graduate student will play in the broader real estate industry, becoming LEED certified is a significant plus for our graduates and speaks to their commitment to sustainable practices.

    ARGUS-DCF® Certification

    ARGUS-DCF® is a widely used income property investment/valuation real estate software package. We are proud to offer the ARGUS-DCF® Certification class to our MBAs, undergraduates and members of the CUREC community. According to ARGUS®, our high pass rates are unprecedented among ARGUS-DCF® Certification classes offered by either ARGUS or other universities.

    Prerequisite: MBA students must be currently enrolled (or have completed) MBAX 6610: Real Estate Finance and Investments or have obtained instructor permission.