LETTER FROM THE CHAIR
Dear Fellow Board Members,
I hope you are as excited as I am about the Harvard Alumni Real Estate Board. When the board took shape 12 months ago, we committed to collaborative, interdisciplinary real estate engagement across the University. This philosophy is displayed in our dual mission: enhancing the experience of students interested in real estate at Harvard, while simultaneously creating and sustaining an engaged network of Harvard alumni in real estate to foster professional and personal growth.
We have had great success with alumni engagement and participation. The Board now has almost 70 members, with 12 new members joining since our Spring ’17 meeting. I write today to highlight the student-facing contributions that the board has made over its first full year and to chart a course for the year ahead.
In our first year, we have made an impact through our work in conjunction with student leadership from Harvard’s real estate clubs, through the Harvard Student Real Estate Consortium (HSREC) - the unique, Harvard-wide student organization representing and creating cohesion among the University’s real estate clubs at Harvard College, Harvard’s Business School, Law School, Kennedy School and Graduate School of Design. The results of this collaboration are tangible; board programming has reached hundreds of Harvard students and Alumni. Programming includes:
- skills-based trainings like ARGUS and Excel Financial Modeling
- mentoring opportunities with alumni through mentoring breakfasts, resume reviews and networking receptions
- peer-to-peer and alumni networking events
- funding and support for the student-run Harvard Real Estate Weekend, a symposium produced by students across the University for the real estate community
In the current academic year, we will once again offer students skills based trainings, mentoring opportunities, networking events and funding for the Harvard Real Estate Weekend. In addition, the board has hired a senior staff member to work in concert with HSREC leadership to execute a full calendar of real estate related programming to engage students and alumni. Highlights include:
- real estate career treks to the Boston area as well as other domestic and international locales
- employment negotiation workshops
- career forums with alumni panelists
- board member student lunches
- and the November roll-out of an employment portal that will house postings for real estate jobs and internships.
These opportunities provide students with the tools and network that will bolster their success as students and practitioners. Additionally, board funded programming is a means for real estate alumni to engage with one other, students, and the University.
We will hear, in greater detail, the impact of the Board’s work with HSREC and the strides we have made toward greater alumni engagement during our upcoming board meeting. In the meantime, I want to take the opportunity to thank each of you for your service and generosity.
I would be remiss in finishing this letter without specifically thanking Kris Miller, our outgoing board chair. Kris’s strategic thinking, warmth and dedication to real estate at the University is reflected in all that the board has achieved in twelve short months.
I look forward working alongside you over the coming year.
Evan Linkner, FAS ’09 GSD ‘11
Chair, Harvard Alumni Real Estate Board