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Partnership to offer scholarship and career opportunities for real estate students

Business, Real Estate
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Jim Connor
Jim Connor, President and CEO of Duke Realty
We are committed at Duke Realty to promoting diversity and excellence in our workplaces and being a leader in this important area for the overall industry. Jim Connor President and CEO, Duke Realty

A groundbreaking program aimed at comprehensively preparing women and minorities for success in the real estate industry will begin in the fall at Roosevelt University in Chicago through an exciting new partnership with Duke Realty Corp., one of the nation’s leading commercial real estate companies.

(Jim Connor, the president and Duke Realty CEO who conceived of the program, is pictured above.)

Beginning in September, four graduate students in Roosevelt’s Marshall Bennett Institute of Real Estate will receive scholarships and be matched with Duke Realty mentors and internships that could lead to job opportunities at Duke Realty offices across the nation.

“This is not your average scholarship program,” said Marshall Bennett Institute of Real Estate Director Jon B. DeVries of the new Duke Realty scholar program that is intended to prepare primarily female and minority scholarship recipients for careers in the commercial real estate industry.

“Not only will our Duke Realty scholars receive help while they are at Roosevelt, but they will also be well-positioned for career success after they graduate. This is an amazing opportunity for both our students and our program,” said DeVries.

One of the nation’s leading real estate companies specializing in the ownership, management and development of industrial and healthcare properties that are located in 21 major metropolitan areas around the country, including Chicago, Duke Realty has been a leader in promoting diversity in the real estate industry.

“We are committed at Duke Realty to promoting diversity and excellence in our workplaces and being a leader in this important area for the overall industry,” said Jim Connor, President and CEO of Duke Realty, which is headquartered in Indianapolis.

 “We see this partnership with Roosevelt as an opportunity to expand on this commitment, particularly with an eye toward helping those who have a keen interest in industrial real estate,” Connor added.

Known as the Duke Realty Fund for Education and Advancement of Minorities and Women in Real Estate – The DREAM Fund, the program is part of a nationwide push by Duke Realty to educate and recruit women and minorities for leadership positions in the real estate industry.

Specifically, the program will pave the way for four Roosevelt students to receive $5,000 scholarships annually for two years toward their studies for a Master of Business Administration in Real Estate or Master of Science in Real Estate degree. While at Roosevelt, each scholar will be mentored by a Duke Realty senior executive and will be considered for internship opportunities at Duke Realty in Chicago. Upon graduation, DREAM scholars will be made aware of job opportunities at Duke Realty offices across the country.

As part of the program, Duke Realty leaders will present case studies during Roosevelt real estate classes. In addition, the company will sponsor an annual luncheon for DREAM scholars, alumni, mentors and leaders.

“We are proud to be selected for this cutting-edge program that promises to fully  develop and shape tomorrow’s leaders for success,” said DeVries, whose Marshall Bennett Institute will honor Connor during its 15th annual real estate gala being held in Chicago on Nov. 10.

For more information about the program, and/or to apply to become a Duke Realty scholar, contact DeVries at or 312-281-3358.

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