The Corcoran Center supports undergraduate education in Real Estate and Urban Action at Boston College. Classes are designed to develop the knowledge, skills and experience necessary to explore the field of Real Estate. Courses contributes to students understanding of the business of real estate and each course incorporates considerations of the economic social and political impacts of real estate. The following is a list of courses offered through the Carroll School of Management. Students from all schools and disciplines are welcome and eligible to take these courses.
The course Real Estate and Urban Action was initiated in 2010 by Joseph Corcoran based on his experience transforming a failed public housing project into a successful, transformational, mixed-income housing development. The course uses the history of this transformation as a core teaching tool, while also exploring broader concepts of real estate and neighborhood revitalization, including the intersection of financial viability and social, cultural, political, and supportive service factors critical to transforming distressed neighborhoods into safe, desirable neighborhoods. Classes include presentations by developers, community partners, public planning officials, and others who have “hands-on” experience transforming communities. The class also includes scheduled field trips. At the end of the semester, students apply their skills and knowledge with a practical neighborhood transformation project.
This course serves as an introduction to the acquisition, development, financing, leasing and management of income-producing real estate. The course employs various teaching and learning methods: class lectures, videos of interviews with experts and about illustrative projects, case study discussion, homework exercises and guest lectures. The course covers the following topics: important terminology unique to the real estate industry; how to use Excel for investment analysis and property valuation; the different types of leases that provide the foundation for property cash flow; building and site design for successful projects; market research methods unique to real estate; how developers and investors identify projects and determine land value; the public approval process with regulatory bodies and community groups; financing of real estate in the debt and equity markets; how tenants make leasing decisions; how projects get into trouble and strategies that owners and lenders use to work-out distressed properties; and, real estate as a catalyst for neighborhood improvement, addressing low income and affordable housing and local economic development.
This course is focused on what real estate development is and what it means to be a real estate developer. In this class, students gain an understanding of the process of real estate development, including design and construction; how developers engage with the public sector and the surrounding community to obtain approval for a development; how projects are financed; and, other important elements that contribute to completing successful real estate projects. We will also learn about the legal aspects of development; the ways that development is a catalyst for neighborhood improvement and local economic growth; and, trends in sustainable development. The course employs various teaching and learning methods: class lectures; videos of interviews with experts and about illustrative projects; case study discussion; guest lectures; team-based virtual tours of Boston neighborhoods that have been transformed by large-scale real estate development; and a final project of teams preparing a development plan for an actual site in the Boston area.
This course focuses on debt and equity financing of income-producing real property, primarily in the U.S. market. The course will look at both the private debt and equity and public securities markets for real estate finance. Using case discussion, lectures, videos, readings and problems in the text, simulation of negotiations and guest speakers, the course considers real estate finance from the perspective of the users of capital (developers and property owners) and the sources of capital (lenders and equity investors). The course also considers the role of the public sector in using taxpayer funds to advance public purposes by offering various kinds of subsidies to developers, and evaluating the relative success of such programs. The primary student outcomes are the ability to discuss and present a professional financing request for debt and equity, understand risks and how to structure a financing of commercial real estate, and appreciate the diverse ways financing can be used to influence community and neighborhood improvement.
Real Estate, Community Development, and Planning is a course focused on helping students understand the complicated process of discourse within and between the public and private sectors that precedes physical change in our communities. By the end of the course, students will have both a theoretical and practical understanding of how cities and towns grow and change through a creative process, strengthened by the interchange of ideas between citizens, government officials, and private interests. Particular attention will be paid to the vibrant but challenging regulatory environment of Massachusetts. Guest speakers and field visits throughout the semester will bring this process to life. There will also be an opportunity for simulation and role-playing as students explore a case study for the master planning of a city block. Time will also be spent on the history of planning and development, the processes that have physically shaped the cities and towns that students witness firsthand today, and how planning will be critical to ensuring appropriate land use for future needs.
This course is a complement to in-class learning and provides an experiential learning component to real estate education at Boston College. The course consists of teams of 4-5 students each working on a field project for a real estate developer/investor, not-for-profit organization or government agency. The field projects are “real world” real estate-related challenges that involve extensive data collection/analysis, interviews with a range of experts and others that can influence the conclusions and recommendations of the team. The projects conclude with presentations to management of the sponsoring companies or organizations. The field projects typically include development proposals for a property; re-development plans for an existing property; and, real estate market research to assist an investor considering expansion into new geographic markets.
The Urban Action Seminar provides an experiential learning opportunity aimed at seniors seeking to work in high-impact social change organizations. The Corcoran Center will place students in organizations focused on urban issues and economic development. Students will work 6 hours per week at their selected organization, attend a discussion every two weeks with guest discussants, reflect on their progress through writing assignments, utilize assigned reading materials, and conduct an exit interview as their final. This course will give students the opportunity to discover their personal mission, identify their skills, and produce work products that can be shared with future employers.