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George Mason Student-Managed Real Estate Fund Scores a Solid Win

Student fund managers of Patriot Real Estate Fund I, a real estate investment fund run by second-year students of the George Mason University Masters in Real Estate Development (MRED) program, recently sold its first investment. The students successfully achieved strong returns for fund investors and benefited from a unique experiential learning opportunity.

In January, the fund sold its equity investment in the Heathcote Professional Building, a 53,000 square foot office building which offers for-lease and for-sale medical office condominiums in Gainesville, Virginia. The building was developed by Buchanan Partners, a leading real estate developer in the Washington DC area. The property is a part of the 100-acre mixed-use master-planned Heritage Hunt Commercial Park and is 2.5 miles from the 60-bed Novant Health Hospital. The investment achieved a return to investors that was well above normal market returns.

The student-managed fund was established in 2017 by supporters and members of the Advisory Board of the Center for Real Estate Entrepreneurship (CREE) with $750,000 in investor commitments. The fund’s goal is to provide students with a real-world experience of the real estate industry in the Washington DC metropolitan area. Students analyze, invest, and monitor a range of projects at different stages of the life cycle of real estate investment including acquisition, entitlements, planning and design, development, management, and, ultimately, disposition. There are few graduate real estate programs in the country that offer this unique practice-based educational program.

There are currently eleven student fund managers serving a term of one year ending in August 2020. The students remain hard at work evaluating new opportunities for the fund and applying lessons learned in the classroom to the field.

“Our student-managed investment fund not only teaches you how to underwrite real world investments, but also allows students to put the knowledge they have gained through the MRED program to the test while working with senior executives who have decades of real estate experience,” said Bobby Klancher, one of the student fund managers. “I would encourage others who are interested in property investment to consider becoming part of the George Mason MRED program and the student investment fund.”

Applications for the Fall 2020 semester of the George Mason MS in Real Estate Development program are now open. Applications to the program can be accessed HERE.

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