About The Program
The B.S. degree in the Blackwood Program in Real Estate is a comprehensive, interdisciplinary academic program that builds on existing strengths in five colleges. The major offers real estate courses that integrate the material students learn in disciplinary courses such as finance, law, and property management through practical experiences within the academic program. The integration occurs through a university-industry partnership where real estate professionals are actively involved in students’ education through guest lectures and mentoring experiences and by providing internship opportunities.
A signature component of the academic program is a junior-level course where university professors and industry executives teach students about the development process from initial conceptualization through construction and management of a developed site. This is followed by a senior capstone course where students work as a team on a real estate development case study. The capstone course is a student-led, experiential learning class where students work in teams and faculty and industry professionals serve as consultants whose knowledge students can draw upon on while carrying out their case studies.
In additional to learning about the broad field of real estate and the entire development process, students are encouraged to find their niche in the field. Students develop an area of expertise by adding a second major, completing a minor, or creating an area of concentration with the approval of their academic advisor. Graduates of the Blackwood Program in Real Estate will be prepared to enter the real estate industry upon graduation and make immediate professional contributions.
The Blackwood Program in Real Estate is a unique and comprehensive, interdisciplinary academic and industry collaboration that develops real estate industry leaders by transcending boundaries and building on university strengths in building construction, business, design, economics, engineering, entrepreneurship, environment, law, planning, and property management. The program provides the best interdisciplinary education in the country from project planning through management of properties, conducts cutting-edge research, and provides relevant outreach for the real estate industry.
- Provide a high-quality learning environment for students to gain fundamental and specialized real estate knowledge, while they develop skills in critical thinking, communication, teaming, and leadership
- Create opportunities for students and faculty to conduct research that contributes to society
- Provide leadership, outreach, and service to the real estate industry throughout the state and the nation
The mission of the undergraduate Blackwood Program in Real Estate is to prepare students to enter and succeed in the wide variety of professions that encompass the real estate industry, to engage in life-long learning, and to understand ways in which real estate professionals contribute to society.
The goal of the undergraduate program is that, within a year or two after program completion, graduates should be able to combine skills gained through academic preparation and post-graduation experience so they can:
- Exhibit competence through application of knowledge, problem-solving skills, and modern tools from multiple areas of real estate practice in the analysis, evaluation, planning, financing and management of real estate;
- Apply skills of effective communication, teamwork, leadership, and professional and ethical behavior as complements to technical competence;
- Incorporate economic, environmental, and social considerations into the practice of real estate; and
- Continue their professional development, which may include professional licensure, graduate level education, continuing education courses, self-directed study, and participation in conferences and industry service activities.
The Blackwood Program in Real Estate received approval from the State Council of Higher Education May 22, 2013.
The real estate program started from contact with two key people, Mike Miller and William Park. Miller has an appraisal firm in Richmond, Va. He is a Virginia Tech graduate and former Board of Visitors member. He has hired many Virginia Tech students who had minored in Real Estate. Park, another Virginia Tech graduate, has a construction and property management business in Charlottesville, Va. They wondered, with all of the assets that Virginia Tech has, why couldn't it have the best real estate program in the country? It has construction, finance, planning, economics, and property management, among other strengths. Their thought was that if Virginia Tech could bring these academic areas together to integrate the curriculum, real estate graduates could be the best trained in the country.
Graduates of the program will be prepared to:
- Lead complex real estate projects that require consultation with people who have specific professional expertise in planning, developing, or managing a project;
- Research and analyze financial feasibility, market conditions, and cash flow for real estate projects;
- Execute data analysis skills and sound working knowledge of Excel, ARGUS, and other relevant software;
- Oversee site selection and prepare documents for project approval;
- Prepare financial and written reports for clients;
- Successfully work in a team environment;
- Motivate and lead employees and teams; and
- Communicate effectively with clients.
Did you know there are many career opportunities in real estate in addition to being a real estate agent or broker? Visit our Employment and Internships page to find out about career paths in Real Estate.
The Program in Real Estate has been ranked in the Top 5 Most Popular Real Estate Schools in the Country. The Program in Real Estate has also been ranked #3 Best Real Estate Degree Programs for 2020. Virginia Tech is also consistently recognized for its value and the quality of its educational programs.