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Real Estate Project Class

The Real Estate Project Class provides students who intend on pursuing careers in real estate the opportunity to learn how to design and execute projects of professional scope and quality under the guidance of an experienced professor and a specific company sponsor. The course includes instruction in project design, scoping, strategy, research, and execution. Presentation skills both oral and written are integral to the course and project.


“The Project Class in Real Estate proved to be one of the most intense and rewarding learning experiences I had at CBS. Students leverage the tools of real estate finance and transactions, while working on a real-world, professional business plan with a company sponsor. In particular, I learned how to determine stakeholder motivations, develop negotiating tactics, and articulate complex business ideas.” — Luigi Kai ’11


“The Real Estate Project Class helps bridge the gap between the classroom and the real world. The class provides a good balance of professor instruction and project sponsor guidance and is an excellent culmination to what has been learned throughout the real estate program. In particular, I benefited from the exposure to real estate professionals and the opportunity to practice the skills taught in the classroom.”
Jaime Obletz ’09


“The Real Estate Master Class is great because it gives students the opportunity to really leverage the deep academic and professional resources at Columbia Business School in pursuit of a real world opportunity. This learning experience was one of the biggest takeaways from my time at Columbia.”
— Tom Ortinau ’09

Student groups, usually consisting of three to four students, work with an outside project sponsor to create a project presentation based on a current, real-world sponsor need.

Course Prerequisites

Students wishing to enroll in the Project Class must have taken Corporate Finance (B6300) and Real Estate Finance (B8331), and must have already taken or be concurrently enrolled in Real Estate Transactions (B8332). Previous real estate experience is highly recommended.

Project Class Final Presentations

Students explore entrepreneurial real estate opportunities through the Real Estate Project Class. In the Project Class, students work on group projects with industry sponsors. Under the founding idea of the competition, students working in groups are given an opportunity to take the kernel of an idea, develop it into a comprehensive business plan, and make an oral presentation of the plan to their class. Through their participation, students enhance their research, problem-solving, team work, and presentation skills.

The Project Class participants present their plans to a group of senior professionals, faculty members, members of the Real Estate Circle, alumni, mentors, and peers. The Project Class Final Presentation event is followed by a reception and awards ceremony. Cash prizes are awarded to top-scoring plans as judged by a panel of Columbia Business School alumni and real estate practitioners. Some winners take their plans on to further success, additional funding, or mentoring. Students may also explore the annual Lang Fund Process and the A. Lorne Weil Outrageous Business Plan Competition through the The Eugene Lang Entrepreneurship Center at Columbia Business School.

Special thanks go to Daniele D. Bodini ’72, the sponsor of the 2009-2012 competitions, and Sheldon Seevak, the competition creator, as well as to the competition judges and industry participants. Read more >

Get Involved as a Project Sponsor

If you and your company are interested in sponsoring a project for this course, please contact

Kate Kerrigan
Administrative Director