Professor Albert Saiz Leaves for Sabbatical, Steps Down as CRE Director
Letter from Former CRE Director Albert Saiz
Dear friends of the MIT Center for Real Estate,
The “MIT CRE 2014-2018: Rising to New Heights, Cementing the Future”, relates the work and achievements of the staff and faculty at the Center over the last four years.
The Center has made remarkable strides. We have more than doubled the pool of applicants to our MSRED degree, thoroughly improved the educational experience, and increased student satisfaction. Eleven new Fellowships now assist deserving students. Financial help targets include US veterans, domestic applicants in non-coastal US states, and women and minority applicants.
Students, alumni, and Faculty are better connected to the industry and its job market, with a full-time Head of Industry Relationships and a full-time Career Development Officer. We have developed and funded a brand new industry speakers’ series at MIT, hosted and participated in a multitude of industry events, and established the World Real Estate Forum (WREF). This annual event—with more than 480 in attendance this year—has become a focal point for thought leadership and networking in global real estate and issues relating to technology in the built environment. The WREF also includes an annual RE-Connect event for alumni. We have grown the Center’s industry partnership and the innovative programs that engage them in experiential learning opportunities on campus.
Our new Professional Education two-week Certificate program is enormously popular and sold out its last two editions; we have participated in new joint Executive Education programs with Sloan, provided customized professional classes worldwide, and will be launching new online courses. The Center for Real Estate has been at the helm in the creation of an innovative multimedia case-study concept at MIT.
We have now four research labs, and a large number of ongoing sponsored research projects. Our research and thought leadership features prominently in academic journals and the press, including Bloomberg, Le Figaro, and The New York Times. Our communications online on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn are further powering the MIT CRE brand.
Rising to New Heights is a comprehensive overview of the work of the CRE team over the past four years, and an opportunity to share more Center news with you: my four-year contract as Director of the Center has come to an end. This coincides with the starting date of my sabbatical year. Having achieved all the strategic objectives I established at the outset, it is time for me to move on, and keep innovating and engaging in alternative efforts in new research and educational projects.
Rest assured that the CRE is in excellent hands, under the leadership of genial Professor Dennis Frenchman as the new Director, assisted by the outstandingly professional Lisa Thoma continuing her role as Associate Director. I am looking forward to the new and exciting initiatives and achievements that the new leadership team will no doubt successfully bring to fruition. With these two at the helm, the Center’s momentum is unstoppable.
It has been a great personal pleasure to be of service to the Center and its constituents. I am grateful and humbled by the opportunity. It will be nevertheless a great honor also to keep contributing toward our common mission as a Professor and researcher in the future.
With very best wishes to all,
Director of the Center for Real Estate, June 1st 2014-June 30th 2018.