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Story on newly minted MBAs snubs leading universities

The May article — titled “Perfect Timing for Class of '06” — that focused on the job market for newly minted real estate graduates with MBA degrees was interesting, even if it failed to capture comments from many of the leading higher-education programs in real estate.

The publication failed to ask sources one crucial question: How many full-time professors in real estate and/or construction management are involved in your program?

According to the Urban Land Institute, there are some 115 real estate programs at universities around the country. But there are only a handful of schools that have full programs, with regular full-time real estate professors. As an example, our program at the University of Denver has 536 majors and is housed in the College of Business, as opposed to a “trades” program.

Our program at the University of Denver has been in existence since 1938 and includes five full-time real estate and construction management professors, with many adjuncts and professors in other areas that teach courses in real estate. We are now advertising to hire three more full-time professors for our program.

A failure to ask that important question about the number of full-time staff members means that a university could claim a real estate program with only one professor devoted full time to the area of real estate. In fact, one might be a finance professor that “heads up” the real estate program.

If you review the schools noted in the article, you will find that some of them fit within this area of no full-time real estate professors. Those schools are not the best sources of information when inquiring about real estate and/or construction management programs.

The article raises good issues, but it fails to focus on some of the key criteria for a strong real estate and/or construction management program.
Dr. Mark Lee Levine
University of Denver

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