Real Estate with a Purpose

When Leslie Voegtlin was laid off from her job in information technology due to outsourcing, she decided to boost her career with a Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) degree to go with her years of professional experience. She chose Stuart School of Business.

“I had been working as a manager but always felt that moving up the corporate ladder was out of reach,” she says. “Working in the IT field, it especially appealed to me to go to a business school that had technology at its core.”

The program’s personalized, interactive environment was a good fit. “The professors are brilliant, highly educated yet down to earth,” she says. “They are able and ready to help us with everyday questions that came from the students and their current workplaces.”

In her final semester, Voegtlin had the chance to pursue a project of great personal importance through independent study with Coleman Foundation Clinical Associate Professor of Entrepreneurship Nik Rokop. “For a few years I have been seeing segments of our society that we leave behind,” she says. “I wanted to figure out the feasibility of supplying housing to people with a felony record. Professor Rokop helped me create a framework with what I had learned in my other classes to apply to analyzing properties.”

“I now have a solid plan to apply to properties and a charity ready with individuals [to move into the housing] when I acquire the right property,” Voegtlin says, including a system to help the renters improve their credit scores. “This is very meaningful to me, as I want to play a part in helping our city become a better place to live for everyone.”

“With an M.B.A., I have the knowledge and experience to move into upper management, whether in my current job or in my own business,” she says, “while I look for opportunities on the side to implement my plans for real estate with a purpose.”

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