The study of real estate at the Wisconsin School of Business includes more than just classroom learning. Our goal is to challenge you to reach your potential as a talented, passionate, and socially responsible leader, ready to make your mark on the urban environment.
Strategic Partnerships with Industry
Students are connected with professionals in industry through the Graaskamp Center Board of Advisors. The board is comprised of senior executives in areas related to real estate and urban development such as asset management, brokerage, consulting, corporate real estate, development, real estate finance, investment, law, planning, regulation, syndication, and design. Students attend biannual board conferences featuring top-level speakers on big picture real estate issues, discussion of real world business decisions, and the chance to network with board members.
Prominent developers, consultants, and other industry leaders also contribute as guest speakers, advisors, and mentors, including:
- Allianz Real Estate of America
- Behringer Harvard
- Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board
- CB Richard Ellis
- Equity International
- Falcon Real Estate Investment Co.
- Principal Global Investors
- Real Capital Analytics
- Strategic Hotels & Resorts
- Tishman Speyer
- Toll Brothers Inc.
The Graaskamp Center and the Real Estate Club jointly present the Innovator Award each semester to recognize outstanding individuals who have made a creative mark on the real estate industry. Recipients of the award are invited to present at a club meeting. Previous Innovators include Nicholas Billotti of Turner Construction, Laurence Geller of Strategic Hotels and Resorts, David Brain of Entertainment Properties Trust, Hersch Klaff of Klaff Realty and Michael Ashner of Winthrop Realty Trust.
Unique Global Connections
Global awareness is central to the Wisconsin Real Estate program. Real estate may be local, but opportunities are increasingly global. Students can participate in international study trips, including participating in the international real estate and investment conference MIPIM in Cannes, France. Not only do the trips like this help prepare Wisconsin real estate students for global business by enhancing their knowledge and professional skills, they also provide an outstanding cultural experience and, in some instances, business contacts for future jobs.
Real estate case competitions are tremendous learning experiences: They challenge students to analyze a scenario and make a cogent and attractive proposal to a high-stakes panel of judges within a short timeframe. Wisconsin students have had success at case study competitions around the country. They have finished first or placed highly in competitions at ULI, NAIOP, University of North Carolina, the University of Texas at Austin, and others. The experience can be rewarding, giving students the opportunity to combine and apply principles learned in the classroom and the confidence to tackle similar high-pressure situations on the job.
Real-World Real Estate Tools
Financial modeling is a fundamental tool in real estate. At Wisconsin, students gain not only skills in constructing and using real estate models in Excel but also the critical thinking and analysis skills to use models appropriately. ARGUS training is included as a part of the curriculum for real estate MBA students in their first-year. Students also use real-time financial information from Bloomberg Professional as part of their coursework and other projects.
Specialized REIT Management Training
Wisconsin recognizes the increasing dominance of the capital markets in real estate and provides state-of-the-art education in understanding not only real estate as an asset class, but also the emerging capital markets associated with the asset. The Applied Real Estate Investment Track (AREIT) is a unique opportunity within the real estate MBA program that truly sets Wisconsin apart. A select team of students manage a live $1 million portfolio invested in real estate assets. They work together as a team to form an economic outlook, an investment philosophy, and a disciplined strategy that will be executed throughout the year with the guidance and approval of a board of investment professionals. This demanding and highly-selective program accepts a limited number of students to participate during the second year of the MBA program.