More schools placing emphasis on real estate development programs

  • Real estate development is being offered at more colleges.
    Real estate development is being offered at more colleges.

    More schools placing emphasis on real estate development programs

    It’s becoming easier for those interested in real estate development to hone their knowledge on the subject. More schools are beginning to place emphasis on this field that was once largely dependent on professionals learning as they go. Despite the industry’s popularity, there isn’t a wide variety of advanced degrees that could benefit these professionals.

    Sternberg noted that more than 300,000 professionals work in this industry and, while skills can be learned while in the field, it’s extremely valuable for an individual to start his or her career equipped with the tools to succeed. There are currently only about 40 graduate schools that teach real estate development, and the goal of the program is to offer a formal education for the large number of interested professionals.

    More funding for schools
    The University at Buffalo isn’t the only school addressing the gap. The Massachusetts Institute of Technology recently received one of its largest grants to build up its real estate development offerings. According to the school’s Web site, alumnus Samuel Tak Lee donated $118 million to the school to build a lab for students to meet and discuss social responsibility within real estate. It will do so by researching sustainable urbanization and sharing its curriculum online.

    “By cultivating a long-term perspective, real estate professionals can create even greater value for themselves and for society based on responsible, sustainable strategies,” Lee said in a statement. “I am eager to connect ambitious, talented students with the skills and knowledge that will help them succeed.”

    According to the Real Estate Developer’s Handbook, professionals often focus on a specific niche, whether it’s residential, commercial, industrial or retail. They must perform extensive analysis on a building or stretch of land according to their niche to decide whether the project will be profitable and feasible. By earning a degree in this field, professionals will be equipped with the skills necessary to make the right decisions and succeed in their field.

    By Monique Smith

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