A gift of $105,000 from Barry Mandel, president of Mandel Group Inc., will fund Marquette University’s Associates in Commercial Real Estate (ACRE) program for the next three years.
The program will also undergo changes aimed at enhancing students’ experience. The three-year-old program, started by Mark Eppli, Bell Chair of Real Estate in Marquette’s College of Business Administration, educates, trains and prepares minorities for careers in commercial real estate throughout southeastern Wisconsin.
"We really feel strongly that there should be more minority representation in commercial real estate in the Milwaukee area," Mandel said. "Fundamentally, there is not enough opportunity for minorities in commercial real estate and I felt as a company we were in a position to offer a path toward this profession.”
This year the program will incorporate changes to its curriculum. The class will be smaller and all students will work on an actual commercial real estate deal with guidance from the program’s industry partners, Eppli and his colleagues. Additionally, the industry partners will serve as mentors to the ACRE students.
"I feel this could be a national model for other commercial real estate programs," Eppli said. "The ACRE students will be immersed in commercial real estate by actually working on a real development deal, which will really bring the classroom to life. It’s not hypothetical. People like Barry Mandel have been tremendously instrumental in the program’s success so far and his gift will ensure its future success."