The Commercial Real EstateFinance Council and the Schack Institute of Real Estate at the NewYork University School of Professional Studies have announced thecreation of the CREFC Center for Real Estate Finance at the SchackInstitute. 

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An endowment gift from CREFC toNYU supports the venture. It was shared at the association'sJanuary 2020 conference. 

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"The idea came from CREFC's boardabout a year and a half ago," says Lisa Pendergast, executivedirector of the CREFC. "The board was very focused on expandingCREFC as a resource for the entire commercial and multifamily realestate industry. While many amazing universities and colleges wereconsidered, the association's decision was based on NYU's razorfocus on commercial real estate finance, its robust ties to theindustry and its location in the heart of New York City, where manyof our members are based."  

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CREFC says the center will serveas a hub for industry collaboration on research initiatives, novelprogramming and student engagement. It anticipates that theendowment will expand the pipeline of students that enter into thecommercial real estate and CRE finance fields.

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"The center will convene membersof academia and industry in addressing issues of criticalimportance for the commercial real estate finance sector,"Pendergast says. "Educating the next generation of commercial realestate finance professionals and providing cutting edge content andresearch are issues we take very seriously, and we could not thinkof a better partnership than NYU's Schack Institute of RealEstate."

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Programming for the upcoming yearincludes a certificate program for CREFC members, standalonecourses responsive to current market conditions and a researchpaper series with contributions from faculty and CREFC IndustryFellows.

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"This will be a national effortthat provides for Schack Institute scholarships, senior CREFCmember fellowships, quarterly classes hosted by the center and theopportunity for CREFC's members to take part in the many-coreconferences hosted by Schack throughout the year, including theAnnual Conference on Capital Markets in Real Estate, now in its53rd year," Pendergast says.

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While the Center for Real EstateFinance is not the only solution to diversity and inclusion issuesin the CRE finance field, CREFC says it is taking steps to ensureand support diversity and inclusion with the creation of the CREFCCenter for Real Estate Finance at the Schack Institute.

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"CREFC Center will providescholarships to deserving students with a focus on minorities,"Pendergast says.

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The center has an inauguralresearch symposium, which will serve as a premierinformation-sharing endeavor, planned for Summer 2021.

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"The center's collaborativeapproach to applied research will support the industry whileproviding important guidance for regulators and policymakers," saidSam Chandan, Larry & Klara Silverstein Chair in Real EstateDevelopment and Investment at Schack in a statement.

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Leslie Shaver

Les Shaver has been covering commercial and residential real estate for almost 20 years. His work has appeared in Multifamily Executive, Builder, units, Arlington Magazine in addition to GlobeSt.com and Real Estate Forum.