2020-2021 RREA Executive Team

April, 2020

The eruption and rapid spread of COVID-19 were a drastic shock that disrupted the entire globe. Rotman School of Management was no exception, and RREA was not immune to the impact. However, thanks to the hard work of RREA executive team and members, the association was able to successfully pivot and create new approaches for alumni and members to connect and share knowledge.

We will undoubtedly face a markedly changed industry landscape in 2021. Our hope is that we can learn from the challenges we have faced and share these lessons in our Rotman real estate community.

 

Stay safe,

Shannon Woods, President
Tony Ju, VP Finance
Andrew Ji, VP Strategic Initiatives
Kabir Sukhrani, VP External
Oleg Egorov, VP Internal
Clarence Qian, VP Communications

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RREA Branding and Marketing Strategy

August, 2020

Lead: Clarence Qian

Logo Design

Our new logo, a spatial infinity symbol, is made up of a series of cubes that represent the immeasurable and the boundless. As a symbol of infinity and eternity, the logo symbolizes the complexity of the ever-evolving built environment as well as the industry's many different, and interconnected facets. We believe it is the perfect new emblem for our club.

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Website Design

The intent of the newly designed RREA website is to provide our members a big picture of the upcoming events and important initiatives, such as development competitions and alumni mentorship program. This website also showcases the Rotman real estate community for the industry professionals who are interested in pursuing an MBA at Rotman to advance their careers,

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LinkedIn and Instagram Campaigns and Cross-Promotion

The RREA Social media accounts continue to act as the instant communication tool for both scheduled events and important announcements. The social media cross-promotion strategy allows RREA to grow our brand and help our alumni build the awareness in the industry. 

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Monthly Newsletter Initiative

Ongoing

Lead: RREA Executive Team

Every month, one member of the RREA executive team sends out a newsletter outlining RREA event updates, industry news, interesting articles and available resources that may be beneficial to our members.

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Club Fair and Promotion Video

September 2020

Lead: Shannon Woods, Kabir Sukhrani

This year a virtual club fair was hosted on Saturday September 5th from 9am-11am via BBCollaborate. A well-produced video was made to demonstrate the role that RREA plays in the Rotman real estate community:

 

What is the RREA?

 

Clarence: The Rotman Real Estate Association is a resource for MBA students pursuing a career in the real estate industry, from property development and management to real estate finance and investment. The association benefits members previously unexposed to real estate to become more interested in the industry, and provides those with a real estate background with a forum to refine and expand their knowledge. 

 

What is your favorite part of the RREA?

 

Oleg: My favorite part of RREA is that it’s a close-knit community where everyone knows each other, and it precisely reflects how real estate industry works in Canada. That really helps to build long-lasting relationships with your colleagues and industry professionals, and RREA is the best place to make the first step in this direction.

Kabir: My favourite event was the case competition co-hosted with SmartCentres REIT. We were given a weekend to create a re-development proposal for an actual Toronto-property. We put together everything from construction budget to phasing strategy to financial model, and at the end presented to members of SmartCentres’ leadership, and monetary prizes were given to winners. The best part was after presentations hanging out and drinking beers, socializing with other teams as well as SmartCentres execs that judged the competition.

Why should you join the RREA?

Shannon: You should join the RREA if you're interested in learning more about the Toronto real estate market as well as gaining exposure to career opportunities and professionals within the industry. RREA events are a perfect supplement to the real estate education offered at Rotman as they help to inform, prep and connect students. We at the RREA are excited to meet you virtually, and hopefully in person soon!

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RREA Kick-Off

September 2020

Lead: Shannon Woods, Kabir Sukhrani

Opening event intended to introduce the Rotman Real Estate Association (RREA) Executive Team and the organization's industry advisors including Ryan McKee and Will Strange. During the event, we introduced new and prospective members to the purpose of the association and to the event schedule for the year. Members are encouraged to join ULI and NAIOP to gain access to the industry events and mentorship programs.  The successful event ended with an joyful real estate Trivia.

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Development Team

September 2020

The purpose of the D-Team is to be a connection between the RREA team and Rotman students. By representing their respective sections, they will bring ideas and concerns from the student community to the team and in turn will bring more transparency and proactiveness to club's decision-making and initiatives. 

D-Team reps have a unique opportunity to share new ideas with the RREA and bring them to life. They are expected to analyze the latest real estate market trends and participate in the creation of RREA monthly newsletter. Another contribution of the D-Team will be the assistance of the executive team in organizing RREA Mentorship Kickoff. The D-Team's contribution can be in many forms all of which will employ creative collaboration to make the club better. Welcome to our D-Team members:

Section 1 - Bassel Hammad
Section 2 - Andrew Honsberger
Section 3 - Manuel Alexis Zecua Burunat
Section 4 - Sahand Chegini
Morning and Evening MBA - Huynh Long Tang

Young Alumni Panel

October 2020

Lead: Clarence Qian, Andrew Ji

The RREA Alumni panel has been designed to be an informal and candid information session between current Rotman candidates and recent alumni who now work in the field of Real Estate. The panel is intended to be a forum for candidates to ask questions about recruitment, relationship management, and future career goals. 

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Industry Night

November 2020

Lead: Tony Ju, Oleg Egorov

Industry Night is an event showcasing the position of Real Estate within the industry at large: financial services, logistics, operations management, and even creative industries. The goal is to share insight on the prevalence of Real Estate within almost every field in which a typical Rotman candidate may be interested. 

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RREA Write-Up on A.CRE

December 2020

Lead: Shannon Woods

Adventures in CRE helps educate their 90,000 monthly readers with Real Estate Financial Modeling and Education.  In their education section, the MBA programs such as those at Harvard, USC, Cornell, and UPenn have been highlighted. A profile of Rotman School of Management had been requested by the audience and a program overview with a real estate focus has now been developed for Rotman.

The writeup can be found here:

RREA Development Competition

January 2021

Lead: Clarence Qian, Andrew Ji

The RREA Development Competition offers Rotman graduate students the opportunity to demonstrate their talents and skills to senior industry members through written and live oral presentations. Teams of two to four Rotman graduate students have one week to devise a development program for a real, large-scale site in GTA.

​Congratulations to all four finalist teams that presented their redevelopment plans virtually to the SmartCentres REIT judges on January 20th. The 2021 finalists raised the level of creative thinking and technical execution delivered in the competition and the judges had a difficult time selecting a winning development proposal!

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RREA Investment Night

February 2021

Lead: Shannon Woods

The RREA presents an evening with Duncan Smith, VP of Investments at The Daniels Corporation. Hear Mr. Smith's career story and learn about The Daniels Corporation and the exciting projects they do!

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RREA Mentorship Program

February 2021

Lead: Clarence Qian

The purpose of the Mentorship Program is to help our RREA members to broaden real estate industry knowledge, explore career paths, and build rewarding and life-long relationships.

The mentor-mentee relationship will be built based on mutual trust, respect, commitment, and communication. Mentors have made a commitment and mentees should take time to prepare before sessions. Mentees should focus on discovering own passions, expertise, and areas of improvement required to achieve career goals. While finding a job may be a mentee’s immediate concern, the best thing a mentor can do is to help the mentee grow as a person and a professional.

2021-2022 RREA Alumni Mentors:

  • Gaurav Mathur, Vice President, Real Estate/REITs Thematic Analyst | Equity Research, BMO Capital Markets

  • Lindan Gill, Managing Director, The SIX Properties

  • Lisa Van Espen, TitleSenior Manager, Real Estate Finance Division, CIBC

  • Massimo Bozzo, Investment Associate, Carttera

  • Mihn Nguyen, Director, Acquisitions and Analysis, CanFirst Capital

  • Nadine Di Nardo, Land Development Manager, High Rise, Mattamy Homes

  • Oscar Piovesan, Development Manager, Real Estate, Fengate Asset Management

  • Rina Gerson, Development Manager, Morguard

  • Robin Ramcharan, Director of Development, SmartCentres REIT

Many thanks to our mentors for the effort, commitment, and generosity of the time!

RREA Meets Co-founders of Adventures in CRE

March 2021

Lead: Shannon Woods

Adventures in CRE (A.CRE) is a go-to place for commercial real estate financial modelling, education, and career advancement resources. The site was started by Spencer Burton and Michael Belasco during their graduate studies at Cornell University.

Out guests, Spencer and Michael both have great career stories. Spencer comes from the Single-Family side of the business and joined Northwestern Mutual after grad school. Michael came from the Construction side of the business and went into commercial development with Hines after grad school. At the event they will touch on their backgrounds, grad school and how to leverage your network and skills to land a job in real estate.

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Women Trailblazers with WIMA

February 2021

Lead: Shannon Woods

WIMA, in collaboration with BDC, ROMA, RREA, RSBA, and RSC, invites you to Women Trailblazers on Wednesday, February 3 from 7:30pm to 9:00pm. We have an amazing lineup of women leaders who are eager to share with you their experiences and learnings in traditionally male-dominated industries. Our speakers include Shelisa Bainbridge (Founder & CEO, ShelisaB Inc), Kellyann Festarini (Sales Recruiting & Capability Director, P&G), Jelica K. Greenwood (Former COO, Strellson), and Christina Iacoucci (Managing Partner, BentallGreenOak). 

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2021 ULI Hines Student Competition

December - February 2021

Lead: Clarence Qian

The ULI Hines Student Competition—entering its 20th year in 2022—offers graduate students the opportunity to form their own multidisciplinary teams and engage in a challenging exercise in responsible land use. As the ULI Student Committee member, Clarence organized and helped assemble five local Toronto graduate student teams for the 2021 ULI Hines Competition with the achievement of the final winner and one honourable mention.

Congratulations to our RREA member Mallika Jain and her team for winning the 2021 ULI Hines Student Competition Honorable Mention:

Entry Title: The Spine
Team Code: 2021-1920
School: University of Waterloo and University of Toronto

The Spine is a new development that is expanding Kansas City’s downtown core while being aware, ambitious, and accessible. The Greater Downtown area is expected to grow by more than 9000 residents in the next 10 years. The Spine will support this increased population with the addition of 3230 residents and 1250 jobs through the project’s 1380 residential units and 193,328 square feet of commercial and office space.

 

Jury Comments: The jury recognized the teamwork evident in the balance between the design and financial aspects of the proposal. The financial assumptions were well-researched and the design integrated Black and Native American history.

Team:

  • Christopher Hardy (Team Leader), Master of Architecture, University of Waterloo

  • Mallika Jain, Master of Business Administration, University of Toronto

  • Ryan Dunham, Master of Environmental Studies in Urban Planning, University of Waterloo

  • Natalia Horna, Master of Environmental Studies in Geography, University of Waterloo

  • Poorna Patange, Master of Architecture, University of Waterloo

 

Faculty Advisors:

  • Val Rynnimeri, Associate Professor, School of Architecture, University of Waterloo

  • Kevin Curtis, Lecturer, School of Architecture, University of Waterloo
     

Professional Advisors: 

  • Clarence Qian, Development Manager, Distrikt Developments

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RREA Development Night

March 2021

Lead: Shannon Woods

Development Night feat. Chris van de Water, Director, Development at Oxford Properties Group & Rotman MBA Alum. For this interactive session, students will be given the opportunity to learn from Chris about project-specific development processes, hear how the business has changed over the past few years and ask questions!

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RREA Handbook

April 2021

Lead: Clarence Qian

Considering many of the RREA members are international students and pivoting into real estate careers in GTA, we think a real estate focused handbook covering Rotman resources, mainstream industry organizations, and self-learning materials can be beneficial to our community. The handbook is certainly a constant work in progress. We will continue gathering feedbacks from our members and releasing revised versions.

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