Real Estate MBA Opportunities in Philadelphia

With 2.7 million payroll jobs, Philadelphia ranks as the eighth-largest job market in the nation. And recently, the city has shifted to a service-based economy, making it an excellent location for MBAs looking for a job in real estate.

As for the real estate market in the City of Brotherly Love, it’s showing positive signs of health. While the medium home price is below average for the city, its home affordability, employment rates and new housing construction were all up, according to Fortune Builders.

So, what about getting a job in real estate in Philadelphia?

Real Estate Job Market in Philadelphia

Unfortunately, the Philadelphia job market isn’t having its best year. According to a study by WalletHub, Philadelphia is one of the worst cities to find a job, ranking low on job-market health and the socioeconomic environment. However, the unemployment rate in the city has lowered to 5.9 percent, from 8 percent, and there’s more good news.

The growth in downtown Philadelphia is surging, according to Forbes. Almost 200,000 people now live in the Center City neighborhood, and it’s continuing to grow. In 2015, the city issued more than 2,500 building permits for multi-family units, which is just barely below the city’s record high. Plus, earlier in 2016, a penthouse apartment in the city sold for $17.85 million—the most expensive residential sale in the history of Philadelphia.

So, what about real estate jobs?

A quick look at Indeed reveals quite a few opportunities in commercial and residential real estate. One example is Amtrak’s position for a senior real estate development manager. The position requires a master’s degree and ten years of experience but is perfect for an MBA looking to work on the re-development of the Baltimore Penn Station and Washington Union Station. Another example is Robb Capital’s position for a director of commercial real estate finance. The position requires an MBA and 5 to 10 years of experience.

Best Philadelphia MBA Programs for Real Estate

Now, that you know that you can find a real estate job in Philadelphia, where should you go to school for your MBA? If you want your best chance for success, we recommend attending one of the following programs.

The Wharton School

U.S. News & World Report has repeatedly ranked Wharton’s real estate MBA program as the top in the nation. The Wharton program stands out in Philadelphia because of its extensive class options. MBAs can choose between eleven unique courses focused on real estate, ranging from “Urban Fiscal Policy” to “Real Estate Entrepreneurship.”

In addition to courses, the Wharton School also offers a few unique opportunities, including:

Rutgers Business School

MBA students at Rutgers have the opportunity to take a concentration in real estate. The concentration consists of four core courses including “Real Estate Finance,” “Real Estate Development,” “Aggregate Economic Analysis” and “Real Estate Law.” Beyond the coursework, MBAs enrolled in the concentration receive unparalleled access to industry leaders, as well as a deep understanding of the real estate profession.

Beyond the concentration in real estate, MBAs at Rutgers also have the opportunity to visit and use the Center for Real Estate. The center consists of a 70-member advisory board comprised of some of the most influential real estate firms in the tri-state area. The center also provides mentoring, internships and career opportunities.

Villanova School of Business

At Villanova, MBA students have the chance to specialize their curriculum with real estate courses. In particular, there are five courses available covering everything from “Commercial Real Estate Investment” to “Sustainable Real Estate Development” and “Strategy Real Estate Decisions.”

In addition to coursework, MBAs at Villanova also have the opportunity to use the Daniel M. DiLella Center for Real Estate. The center provides both academic and professional development opportunities within real restate. It also supports faculty research and teaching, while mobilizing the Villanova real estate community.

Fox School of Business at Temple University

Temple University is home to the Real Estate Institute, located in the heart of Center City. The institute is the largest program for real estate education, not just in Philadelphia but in the entire tri-state region. As for MBAs at the Fox School, while there’s no specific real estate concentration, students can take courses like “Commercial Real Estate Analysis” and “Real Estate Investment and Finance.”

Another unique opportunity that stands out for MBAs interested in real estate is it the Temple Real Estate Organization. TREO encourages interaction among all disciplines that relate to real estate. It brings students together to discuss urban planning, land economics, real estate and more.

LeBow College of Business at Drexel University

For MBAs at Drexel University, there’s an opportunity to also obtain a Graduate Certificate in Real Estate from the school’s Construction Management Department. The certificate is online and provides coursework in project finance, operations, development law, architecture and more.

Beyond the certificate, MBAs at LeBow can attend specific MBA Career Services Panels to discuss job opportunities in real estate development and project management. The panels provide MBAs with an opportunity to gain valuable knowledge about real estate while also interacting with industry leaders.


About the Author

Kelly Vo    

Kelly Vo is a writer who specializes in covering MBA programs, digital marketing, and personal development.

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