Spring 2013 Newsletter

National Marquette Day recap

On March 2, more than 70 alumni and friends of the program came together for a post-basketball game networking event at Buck Bradley’s. The event, which also took place on National Marquette Day, was one of the most successful alumni events in the program’s history. The Marquette men’s basketball team added to the success by beating the Notre Dame Fighting Irish 72-64.

This was the fifth year the real estate program has held an alumni post-game event. If you missed the action this year, don’t worry – we plan to continue the tradition in the spring of 2014.

Fundraiser success

From February 11 to March 2 the Center for Real Estate held a fundraiser for young alumni of the program (graduates from 2004-present). More than 21 percent of our alumni donated to the CRE, and gifts averaged upwards of $115 per person. The results: 45 donations totaling nearly $5,200 in funding that directly supports our students and their trips to national conferences like NAIOP Development, ICSC RECon and the ULI Fall Meeting.

And which class had the most donors? The class of 2008! Thanks to everyone for their generosity; we’re proud to work every day to increase the value of your degree.


1991 Greg Warsek
2003 Garritt Bader
2004 Brian McGuire, Andrew Schoene
2005 Dan Leising, Jon Mulcahy
2006 Allison Kuchny, Adam McCostlin, Jeffrey Urbanski, Ben Weiland
2007 Peter Adreani, Stefanie (Heiden) Bachrach, Michael Kelly, AJ Manas, Theron May, Jim Packee, Evan Reed
2008 Patrick Biernacki, Amy (Allendorf) Elston, Andy Hunt, Robin Meyer, Patrik Modig, Neal Papajcik, Nina (Nicklas) Schuerman, Carson Stratman, Patrick Van Milligan, Patrick Wallace
2009 Kevin Boraca, Kaitlynn Koeppler, Robert Mueller, Joe Powers, Mike Riopel, Ted Stratman, Mike Wanezek
2010 Colleen Boyle
2011 Alex Brackman, John Feeney, Robert Jay Matuska, Francis Richie, Kevin Stratman
2012 Maggie Brueggen, Brooke Kellaher, Regan Kennedy, Brian Konyn, Erin Nagle

Curriculum changes

After several years of work, the Center for Real Estate is pleased to announce several changes to the real estate program curriculum.

A committee, led by David Krill, worked with a diverse group of board members representing employers, experienced alumni, young alumni and faculty to research and develop a white paper that outlined the academic and non-academic skills graduates need to be successful professionals. Dr. Mark Eppli and professors in the program worked together to ensure that these more than 120 skills were included in courses, and that these skills built upon one another. Courses were altered to meet these standards; they will be implemented in fall 2013.

The biggest change to the curriculum is the addition of an Introduction to Real Estate course. Now available to all students in the College of Business Administration, the course fulfills a legal course requirement that each student must complete. This not only gives students an introductory course in real estate, but it will also help recruit students.

The curriculum will be reviewed and revised at the end of each spring. Additionally, the Center for Real Estate Advisory Board will continue to review the needs of employers and alumni and give feedback to professors on curriculum adjustments moving forward.

APC back from sabbatical; research update

Dr. Anthony Pennington-Cross has returned from his sabbatical. During that time, he was inducted as a fellow at the Homer Hoyt Institute and engaged in the following major research projects:
Single-family home mortgages: Using econometrics, Pennington-Cross found that, not surprisingly, homeowners tend to default in locations with high permanent unemployment. Cyclical unemployment does increase the rates of 30-day delinquency but does not affect defaults. These results imply that locations and time periods with high unemployment rates may not increase default rates.  It depends on the relative magnitude of the cyclical and permanent components.   
Industrial Rent Index Chicago: In collaboration with Dr. David Clark, professor of economics, Pennington-Cross created a constant quality rent index for industrial property in the Chicago area. The results show that compared to asking rents and simple averages miss the turning points of the industrial property business cycle, overstate the run-up in rents during boom periods and understate the decline in rents during the recession and downturn in rents. He says this is because over the business cycle the quality of the space transaction changes leading to inaccurate average rents.
Irish mortgage finance issues: Thanks to Tim Keane, Pennington-Cross met with Ireland’s Consul General Aidan Cronin and Minister Joan Burton in March to discuss options to deal with their dramatic drop in house prices (prices are down approximately 50 percent down from their peak). Pennington-Cross presented two potential solutions to remove or soften the incentive to default: 1) Copy Denmark, who issues loans that can be prepaid at market value, or 2) copy commercial property loans and to involve financial institutions as partial equity holders along with the owner/resident. The government officials seemed very interested in these innovative approaches to reducing the sensitivity of mortgages to price changes.
Chilean shopping center study: In collaboration with Sergio Garate, a Chilean student at Marquette, this research looks at how the spatial density of different types of stores affects store level productivity and ongoing work is examining how entry of large international firms, such as Wal-Mart, affect sales and store productivity.

Two new adjunct professors hired

The Center for Real Estate and Real Estate Program are excited to introduce two new adjunct professors, who have already helped teach courses during the 2012-2013 academic year:

Steve Wagner, Continental Properties Company, Inc.
Steve, a senior vice president of retail group and co-founder of Continental Properties, began teaching the fall Real Estate Development course to a group of mostly junior and senior students. His deep knowledge of development and leasing, especially in the area of retail real estate, was extremely well received by students. Steve received his B.A. from UW-Whitewater and his M.S.R.E. from UW-Madison.

Kris O’Meara, Irgens (retired)
Kris, a former principal at Irgens in Milwaukee, came aboard in January 2013 to lead the Advanced Real Estate Analysis course this spring (also known as the real estate case competition course). As a feasibility expert, Kris has been a perfect fit in this role, assisting student teams in understanding the real estate development and feasibility process at a detailed level. Her deep network of contacts in the Midwest has especially helped the students as they prepared their competitions and, more importantly, their entrance into the professional world. Kris received her B.S. in real estate from UW-Madison.

Case competitions

Smart. Creative. Practical. Realistic. These words describe our student case competition teams during their recent events this April. Both teams, the Harold E. Eisenberg Midwest Real Estate Challenge team and the NAIOP Minnesota University Challenge team, placed well at their events and once again made Marquette proud.

Midwest Real Estate Challenge, Chicago, April 6: Defending champions Marquette took runner-up at this year’s challenge, with the top honors going to a team from Roosevelt University in Chicago. The site, which was owned by Sears, consisted of 38 acres on Chicago’s south side adjacent to a CSX rail yard. The Marquette team proposed a sale-leaseback of the land from Sears and addition of a Wal-Mart to anchor the site and draw additional traffic to the area. Redevelopment of an old theater and the development of a new community-based medical office building highlighted improvements to the area and the community. Overall, the Marquette team was excited about their performance and even received praise after the event from a representative from Sears, who also asked to get a copy of their report and presentation. Other schools in the competition included Indiana University, University of Pennsylvania, University of Notre Dame, DePaul University, University of Illinois at Chicago and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

University Challenge, Minneapolis, April 18: Defending runners-up Marquette once again took second place by a slim margin, getting edged out by the University of Northern Iowa. The University of Wisconsin-Madison took third place. The downtown site included a .89 acre parking lot one block from Nicollet Mall and the center of the city. Marquette’s proposal included a stacked 18-story building with luxury apartments, a boutique hotel, and both above and below ground parking. According to the judges both the Marquette and UNI teams had excellent reports and presentations, but UNI edged out Marquette with an especially strong written report. Other schools in the competition included St. Cloud State University and the University of St. Thomas.
Special thanks to all the team advisors and mentors who helped our students maximize their learning throughout this process, as well as first-year instructor Kristine O’Meara for being an incredible source of knowledge and support to the students throughout the competitions.

Harold E. Eisenberg Midwest Real Estate Challenge Team: Matt Fahey (senior, real estate and finance); Brian Jones (MSAE student); Dan Klister (senior, real estate and finance); and Tom Shea (senior, real estate and finance)

NAIOP Minnesota University Challenge Team: Pat Savoie (captain, senior, real estate and finance);  Max Schultz (senior, finance and entrepreneurship);  Nathan Weingart (senior, engineering, construction management); and Thomas LeNoir (senior, entrepreneurship and information technology).

Alumni deal-making

Completed any deals with Marquette alumni recently? We want to hear about it! The Center for Real Estate is hoping to highlight some of our alumni success stories in our summer newsletter. If you have completed a deal with a fellow alum please let us know, and we may feature you in the next newsletter. Please contact Center for Real Estate Assistant Director Andrew Hunt with your stories.