Spring 2019 Real Estate Finance Competition at Cleveland State

May 13, 2019
Written by: CREW Cleveland
On Monday, May 13, 2019, our own CREW Cleveland President, Jennie Church, of Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease LLP, participated as a judge in the Spring 2019 Real Estate Finance Competition held at Cleveland State University’s Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs.  She, alongside representatives of the Urban Land Institute, NAIOP, Marous Brothers Construction, Project Management Consultants, and Sustainable Communities Associates, evaluated and judged presentations from the top five graduate students enrolled in the graduate Urban Real Estate Finance Course at CSU. 

CREW, along with the other judges, collectively donated $4,500 in scholarship funds towards the competition, and the funds raised were disbursed to the presenters.  The top presenter, Matthew Keri, received $2,000 for his proposal for a mixed-use housing and retail development project in Slavic Village.  The close runner-up, Jazmyn Blockson, received $1,750 for her proposal for a retail center in northeast University Circle.  Other finalists included Dro Sohrabian, who proposed a mixed-use project at East 55th and Euclid; Jennifer Chandler, who proposed a housing development with a grocery in the Clark-Fulton neighborhood; and Ellen LaFleur, a non-competing finalist who proposed a transit-oriented development along the Red Line in the West Cudell neighborhood of Cleveland. 

The competition was the culmination of a year-long graduate real estate sequence where students learn the fundamentals of the development process, market analysis, and evaluating real estate feasibility, with a focus on weak market urban development finance.  CREW members and their colleagues were active in providing one-on-one mentoring to all sixteen students in the class on their final projects leading up to the competition. This event is a highlight every year at CSU, providing partnerships between students, faculty, and the real estate community, and fostering connections for the newest members of the industry. 

For more information and to volunteer to assist with next year's program, please contact CREW member Lori Crow at Lcrow@byredwood.com.