Lewis, who holds an M.B.A. from the University of Southern California's Marshall School of Business, says he's seen a dramatic increase in the number of M.B.A. programs with focuses in real estate in the past 5 or 10 years.
[Read about the reinvention of the M.B.A.]
"The industry is now much more sophisticated and analytical, which is one reason behind this trend," he says. "There is a real need for the M.B.A. type skill set."
Jeffrey Rogers, president and chief operating officer of the commercial real estate consultancy Integra Realty Resources, says he's optimistic about the future for jobs in real estate, even if the commercial real estate market is the worst it has been in 30 years. In the next two years, Rogers expects commercial real estate to pick up as the economy recovers and the population continues to grow.
"Given the lag before we see a significant uptick in demand and development, now would be a great time to get an M.B.A. with a real estate focus," he says. "Considering the two year investment in time, those graduating in 2014 or 2015 will be graduating into a much better market than what we currently have, with opportunities to get development experience."
[Read more about specialty M.B.A. programs.]
Tim Nguyen, an M.B.A. student at San Diego State University's College of Business Administration, says he is driven by a long-term strategy.
"Many, myself included, consider this to be the Pacific century, and the United States is in a favorable position to lead the development and growth of Asia and Latin America. Americans—with the right mind set, determination, and skill sets—can reap the economic and social benefits of the expected and potential growth in population and trilateral investments," he says. "Real estate is an industry that could gain from these trends."
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