CBRE Group and Project Destined have launched a first-of-its-kind program to help Black students bridge their education to real-world experience in the commercial real estate industry.
Project Destined’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Bridge Program, sponsored by CBRE, is a holistic approach that connects students with CBRE leaders and exposes them to industry career paths. At least 100 students from select HBCUs will receive scholarships to participate in the program each year, starting this spring. Leaders from select HBCUs will serve as academic advisors to help facilitate student participation.
“Through this program, Project Destined is empowering the next generation of Black leaders in commercial real estate by providing the tools, knowledge and resources to prepare them for rewarding careers,” said Tim Dismond, CBRE’s Chief Responsibility Officer. “Thanks to our comprehensive partnership, CBRE is gaining access to a rich pipeline of future talent from underrepresented communities of color so our workforce reflects the communities where we live and work.”
The six-week bridge program gives students more than 40 hours of first-hand exposure to careers in commercial real estate, including an executive speaker series with CBRE leaders, specialized workshops, and career development sessions. Students will focus on networking, leveraging LinkedIn, technical competencies, such as financial modeling and ARGUS, as well as interviewing, and presentation skills. Participating academic advisors will receive a fellowship stipend and collaborate with Project Destined to share program resources.
“Too many groups have felt more victim than participant in change through real estate in their communities,” said Cedric Bobo, Co-founder of Project Destined. “This partnership gives us a chance to demystify real estate, create a pathway and provide the training that’s necessary. CBRE’s incredible global network will create great opportunities for these students.”
At the onset of the pandemic in 2020, CBRE launched a partnership supporting Project Destined’s 8-week virtual commercial real estate internship program, one element of the company’s multi-faceted effort to hire and develop diverse talent. More than 350 students have been trained through the program, resulting in 76% of participants landing jobs or internships. The HBCU Bridge Program partnership is part of CBRE’s Community Impact Initiative announced in December 2021.