Northwestern students form real estate club for undergraduates

Jonah Dylan, Reporter

For the first time, Northwestern students will be able to explore interests in real estate through a new student group debuting this fall.

Weinberg juniors Chase Parisi and Henry Anwar decided to start the club last spring and began reaching out to undergraduate students who showed an interest in real estate. Weinberg senior Connor Sharples, the club’s co-president, said there’s an assumption among economics majors that investment banking and consulting are the only career options they have coming from Northwestern.

“Real estate is just such a huge industry, but no one knows it, and because of that people are limited with their options post-grad,” Sharples said.

The group sought upperclassmen for leaders in the club who had already completed internships in the real estate and consulting world, including Sharples, who interned at JP Morgan last summer and has a full-time offer to return after his senior year at NU.

Along with Parisi, Sharples said he will serve as co-president of the club. Weinberg junior Jeremiah Hsu will serve as temporary president while Parisi studies abroad.

“We felt like we had to reach out to people that had prior internships or family or just had any kind of connection to real estate,” Hsu said. “To find people for that kind of role we looked for upperclassmen.”

Though there is a graduate real estate club in the Kellogg School of Management, there has never been an undergraduate real estate club at NU, Sharples said. The club’s founders want to give students an opportunity to learn about real estate, network within the field and be recruited by real estate firms, Sharples said.

The club has an Oct. 5 kickoff event, where the CEO of Wrightwood Financial, a real estate investment firm, will speak. The club hopes Cohen will inspire students to get excited about real estate, said Weinberg sophomore Nick Rutherford, the group’s vice president of events.

Rutherford said it doesn’t matter if students have experience with real estate, as long as they are interested in learning and engaging with the topic.

Hsu, Sharples and Rutherford all agreed they would like to see NU create undergraduate real estate classes and possibly a real estate major. For now, they just want to start educating students to get their club off the ground.

“How can you understand the whole market crash without understanding real estate?” Sharples said. “Just in general, to understand real estate and what it’s all about and the effects it can have on an economy on a global scale — it’s silly that they don’t teach it.”

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