The 2015/2016 school year is well underway, and activity at the CU Real Estate Center is brisk. There are currently 125 undergraduate students enrolled in the RE Certificate program, and over 315 seats filled with interested students in offered classes this fall. In the MBA program there are currently 19 students taking Real Estate Finance and Investments and 15 students in Real Estate Economics. There is no shortage of questions to be answered or careers to be shaped. Fortunately for all our students, the real estate industry is in generally good shape, so internships and jobs are available in many areas of finance, marketing, leasing, sales and development.
We are offering a new class in Risk Management, which will be beneficial for anyone who wants to better understand the various areas of risk in the real estate world. Weighing the various risk elements in portfolios and individual assets, from portfolio balancing, construction risk, interest rate risk, lease-up risk, and general overall economic risk, is critical in the decision-making process in buying, selling, holding, financing and developing real estate assets.
We are rapidly approaching our fall National Advisory Board (NAB) meeting, where key real estate practitioners from around the country come to Boulder to discuss and debate current topics in the industry, and to help direct the growth and direction of the Real Estate Center. In this session, we will be hearing from Mr. Tom Clark, the Executive Director of the Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation, who will brief us on the state of the real estate market in Denver and the Rocky Mountain West. Tom has a wealth of experience in the economic development arena, and we are certain to gain valuable insights from his presentation.
We are currently tabulating the results from our first-ever member/stakeholder survey at the Real Estate Center. Our goal is to make sure we are providing the best value possible to our various constituencies. From our students, to our Council, NAB and Board of Governors members, we want to make sure that the Center is relevant, effective, and growing. We want to maintain our already strong reputation in the industry, and grow our stature beyond the Rocky Mountains, to ensure our students and faculty are recognized and rewarded for their efforts and expertise.
On the hiring front, we have commenced our search for a full-time Executive Director. The position is highly desirable and prominent, and we want to make sure we find the best possible individual to move the Center forward. A search committee is being formed, and the job description is being finalized. We hope to identify and secure a new Executive Director by the end of the calendar year. We are also searching for a replacement for Professor Liang Peng, who departed in June to take a post at another top-notch program in the eastern US. We wish Liang well, and thank him for his years of service to CU.
Finally, we are pleased to announce that we we now have two meaningful endowment funds that will help support the Center financially, and will ensure its growth and stature for years to come. Bill Reynolds, a longtime supporter of the program, has made a generous donation which, with the help of matching funds from the Chancellor, has created a $2.1MM fund to support general Center operations. In addition, our Experiential Learning Endowment is now approaching $900,000, which will help support student activities beyond the classroom, including student treks, case competitions and other hands-on learning opportunities that compliment our formal academic curriculum.
No matter how you look at it, the current and future state of the Center is exciting and growing. We are looking forward to continuing our great tradition of providing top notch experiences for our students and Center supporters. Much more to come soon!!
Interim Executive Director
There are two Real Estate related positions available at Leeds School. First, Dean Ikenberry has approved a full-time position to replace Sherm Miller as the Executive Director of the University of Colorado Real Estate Center. A search committee is being formed to identify qualified candidates. The expectation is that a qualified candidate can be identified during the fall and begin leading CUREC in January 2016. In the meantime, Kim Koehn is doing an outstanding job as the interim Executive Director. Kim has agreed to continue as the interim Executive Director until January 1, 2016.
Second, the Provost of the University and the Dean of the Leeds School have approved a faculty position to replace Associate Professor Liang Peng. Liang left the Leeds School in May to become an Associate Professor of Risk Management at the Smeal College of Business at Penn State University. The faculty position may be at any rank: Assistant Professor (without tenure) or Associate or Full Professor (with tenure). The Finance Division is advertising this position in the usual academic publications. The Division plans to solicit interest in the faculty position and begin interviewing qualified candidates during the fall semester. If all goes well, CUREC will have another tenure-track real estate faculty member on board for the Fall 2016 semester.
Finally, I would like to thank Linda Kaboth for taking on additional teaching responsibilities at Leeds. Linda is currently teaching two undergraduate real estate courses for us: Real Estate Principles and Real Estate Finance and Investments. In addition to these two classes, Linda plans to teach the MBA Principles of Real Estate couse and an undergraduate Real Estate Finance and Investments course for us during the Spring 2016 semester. Thank you Linda.
Academic Director of the University of Colorado Real Estate Center
The undergraduate real estate certificate students will again be competing in two real estate case competitions this year.
First up in the fall is the annual showdown between CU, CSU and DU: the ICSC Real Estate Competition. CU will be defending its victory over its in-state rivals last fall at the inaugural competition held at CU Boulder. The competition is made possible through the generous support of ICSC and will be hosted this fall by CSU on November 6th.
In the spring we will again field a team for the annual USC International Real Estate Case Competition in LA. We plan to continue our winning ways having won the competition in 2013 and placed highly year after year over the best undergraduate real estate programs in the U.S. and abroad.
The undergraduate real estate program at CU Boulder continues to grow and will graduate its largest ever class of Real Estate Certificate recipients in the spring thanks in part to great experience these competitions afford our undergrad students. Thank you to the CU Real Estate Council leadership and members, ICSC and all the industry professionals who support and participate in these great programs.
For more information about the undergraduate real estate case competitions, please contact the CU Real Estate Center or the faculty sponsor, Curtis Sears (email@example.com).
The RE Certificate Program and RE Club continue to show solid growth. Forty-five seniors earned their Real Estate Certificate and graduated in either May or August. Right now, 93% of the new graduates are working in real estate jobs around the US as financial analysts, commercial brokers, market researchers, etc. at companies such as CBRE, Colliers, HFF, Jones Lang LaSalle, Lennar, Bellwether Asset Management, Tebo Development, FirstBank and Redwood Trust among others.
We currently have 125 seniors and juniors signed up to earn the Certificate. This fall we are offering 8 sections of real estate classes (Principles, Finance, Law and Development) and have filled over 315 seats with interested students.
The RE Club is off to a great start this fall. Our first meeting had 45 students attending who heard industry speaker Scott Trench from BiggerPocket.com talk about house-hacking and investing in your first real estate property. Our second meeting was a construction site tour of PearlWest conducted by Dan Schuetz at Nichols Partnership. The Club has 4 outstanding officers this year: seniors Andrew Hanna and Davis Niederman and juniors Katie Rose Gurkin and Sam Nourafsan. The officers are planning a Habitat for Humanity volunteer project this fall plus 4 more Tuesday night meetings before the end of the fall semester.
A graduate of CU Boulderandof the University of Chicago's MBA program, Kim enjoys a very successful career in the real estate industry. He has held positions with national developers and, at one point, led the Denver office of Equity Office Properties (the largest public office REIT in the country). Kim currently operates his own development and investment entity, K2Ventures.
In addition to Kim's breadth of industry experience, Kim is no stranger to Leeds. For the past four years, Kim has taught the Real Estate Challenge graduate course - a course that in many ways exemplifies the experiential learning opportunities our students benefit from. He is a tireless volunteer, supporter, and leader within the CU Real Estate Center and has done so for many years. I am thankful for his willingness to step into this interim position and for the leadership I know he will bring to the Center.