Real Estate Club Spends the day in NYC Learning From Alumni
The newly established Real Estate Club had its first official field trip, planned by students with the help of faculty advisors, to New York City on November 11 where members visited four firms: Howard Hughes Corporation, Thomson Reuters, Related, and Structure Tone.
During the early stages of planning, Dr. Katsiaryna Salavei Bardos, associate professor of Finance, introduced John Freel, ’85, to the president and vice president of the Real Estate Club - Joseph Pisano, ’18 and Anthony Crasto, ’18. With John’s experience in the real estate industry Pisano and Crasto were able to make connections with many other alumni in the field in order to make the trip a reality. The Club was also able to develop vital relationships through connections that Associate Professor of Finance Dr. Walter Hlawitschka has in the finance world.
The day started early in the morning as Club members took the train to Grand Central and hopped on the subway to arrive at their first stop: Howard Hughes Corporation. At Howard Hughes, George Giaquinto, vice president of Development, presented the company’s projected 3-D model of their Seaport District project. Club members were very engaged and fascinated by the project and the details behind it. The Club then made its next stop at Thomson Reuters where Jaime Fuertes ’88, global head of Portfolio Management and Workplace Strategy, gave an informative presentation on how Thomson Reuters operates its office locations globally. Fuertes also discussed the advantages of buying versus leasing property.
Next up was Related Companies. The Club was very excited to visit Related because of the company's new development, Hudson Yards. The Hudson Yards project on the west side of Manhattan is one of the biggest and most expensive developments in Manhattan’s history. Vice President Steve Winter presented the Hudson Yards project to Club members from a leasing perspective. This was significant because the Club was able to understand the development end of leasing from Related Companies, and the tenant perspective of leasing from Thomson Reuters.
After some Q&A at Related, Club members made it to their last stop at Structure Tone. There, Vice President of Estimating Paul Crilly and Account Executive Lou Ottrando presented the Club with an overview of Structure Tone’s mission and work process. Later on, Structure Tone held a reception hosted by Eugene White ’96, principal client liaison, where fellow Fairfield alumni came for a meet and greet with Club members. Alumni and students spoke about different career paths and opportunities in the industry.
When asked about the success of the trip, Club advisor Dr. Bardos replied: “The trip to NYC organized by the Fairfield Real Estate Club was an excellent opportunity for students to learn firsthand about some of the most exciting real estate projects in the industry. It helped translate what students learn in the classroom to a real world experience. And it also broadened their understanding of the many potential career paths they will have after they graduate from Fairfield. We were especially grateful to the Fairfield alumni we met who generously shared their time and knowledge with us.”
Written by Joseph Pisano ’18, president of the Real Estate Club