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HEEF Midwest Real Estate Challenge

Roosevelt University real estate students win coveted Midwest Real Estate Challenge

Winners 2015

 Left to Right: Al Klairmont, Dennis Harder, Hubie Greenwald, Daniel Gutman, Karli Mayher, Steve Fifield, Randy Fifield, Mary Fran Gill, Ainsworth Thompson, Ken Marino, Alan Schachtman, Mike Laube, Jonathan Dennis, Jon B. DeVries (students in bold)

For the third year in a row, a team of students from Roosevelt University's Chicago School of Real Estate has won the Harold E. Eisenberg Foundation Midwest Real Estate Challenge.

Presenting the winning proposal for development known as Cap the Kennedy, the Roosevelt team of five Master of Science in Real Estate students outpaced student teams from Marquette University, the University of Illinois at Chicago and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

"The Roosevelt team did an extraordinary job of putting together a comprehensive and practical development plan and we are grateful to the Harold E. Eisenberg Foundation for hosting this event," said Jon B. DeVries, director of Roosevelt's Marshall Bennett Institute for Real Estate and an advisor to the Roosevelt student team that won the Midwest Challenge on April 11th.

"It is quite significant that our students have taken first place for the last three years in this prestigious contest," added DeVries.  "It speaks volumes about the quality of Roosevelt's real estate program and its students."

During the fifth annual competition held at the Standard Club in Chicago, student teams from the four universities, including Roosevelt were given the assignment of coming up with a plan for capping a six-block region of the Kennedy Expressway between Lake Street and Jackson Boulevard.

Effectively connecting Chicago's West Loop with the downtown central business district, Cap the Kennedy is a futuristic project proposed by the Fifield Companies to be a catalyst for growth of the downtown corridor west of the Chicago River.  Three leading executives from the Fifield Company sat on the five-member panel that judged the Roosevelt student team's plans as having the most potential for feasibility and success.

"All the teams that participated did a great job of describing what should go on the Kennedy Cap," said Mary Fran Gill, A Master of Science in Real Estate (MSRE) student and the leader of the winning team that also included MSRE students Hubie Greenwald, Daniel Gutman, Karli Mayher and Ainsworth Thompson.  The team proposed a Kennedy Expressway cap that would include a technology hub, interactive green space, a glass atrium, restaurants and retail shopping.

"What won it for us is that we really drilled down in our plan on the financials, including an in-depth look at how much money could be generated through a funding district that we combined with an upzoning plan for the area surrounding the expressway cap," Gill said.

As a result of the winning team's effort, Roosevelt's real estate program will receive a $5,000 scholarship for one of its students from Fifield Companies.  The Roosevelt team also will be recognized as the 2015 Midwest Real Estate Challenge winner at the annual Harold E. Eisenberg Foundation dinner on Oct. 6th.

Presentation coming soon