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New MBA in Real Estate Launched in Tobin

Female student looking out windows
Thursday, December 6, 2018

Within a few miles of St. John’s University sits some of the most valuable real estate in the world.

The island of Manhattan alone is worth, by some estimates, upward of $2 trillion—to say nothing of New York’s other four boroughs and Long Island.

Beginning this academic year, The Peter J. Tobin College of Business is putting students on track to make their mark in this exciting market, offering M.B.A. candidates the chance to concentrate in real estate or real estate finance.

“New York’s economy is built on FIRE—finance, insurance, real estate,” said Biagio Pilato, Esq. ’87CBA, ’97L, LL.M., Associate Professor of Accountancy. “The Tobin College of Business offers courses in finance and insurance, and now we are adding the missing component, which is real estate.”

“The program presents an exciting opportunity for students, who will benefit from New York’s uniqueness as a real estate market in which there is a finite amount of space and millions of people who want to live here,” said Jason P. Berkowitz, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Finance, who helped launch the new programs.

Andrew Piekarski, a Real Estate Director at Wafra Investment Advisory Group, who also teaches an undergraduate course on real estate finance at St. John’s, said the location of the University gives St. John’s students unique access to talented adjunct faculty members and hands-on experiences. “The pace and feel of being in New York is going to be different from the experience anywhere else,” he said.

Robert J. Sein, Esq., Director of the Mattone Family Institute for Real Estate Law at St. John’s University School of Law, calls New York “the world’s best training ground” for real estate professionals. “It is hypercompetitive, and the deals are sophisticated and heavily negotiated,” said Mr. Sein, who anticipates partnerships between the emerging M.B.A. programs and the Mattone Center. “If you can practice real estate law or succeed in the real estate business here, you can succeed anywhere.”

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