Friday, February 6, 2015

Tucson Association of REALTORS® (TAR) awards CAPLA scholarship for its Master of Real Estate Development Program (MRED)

Recently, the UA College of Architecture, Planning, and Landscape Architecture (CAPLA) received its first leadership gift for the Master of Real Estate Development Program (MRED) to support scholarships, teaching, and research.

The Tucson Association of REALTORS® (TAR) has generously awarded $50,000 to this innovative program.

CAPLA launched the MRED program in the fall of 2013 to educate real estate leaders for the new economy, with a focus on sustainable and responsible development practices. With an exemplary interdisciplinary faculty led by Director Lauri Macmillan Johnson and Dr. Arthur C. Nelson, FACIP, the MRED program has been embraced with enthusiasm by students and industry professionals. The program has already exceeded enrollment expectations, and TAR’s gift is yet another indication of success.

“TAR became interested in this educational program because its intent is to develop the future leaders of our industry. In addition, the focus on studying, analyzing and understanding the best practices in sustainable development is a high-value benefit for the future of real estate in our community. Those forward-thinking approaches correspond perfectly with our association’s long-term vision for the region’s housing sector,” said TAR President Nicole Brule-Fisher.

“Another key benefit is the schedule of late afternoon and evening classes, making it more accessible for working professionals to attend. That accommodation is important to our members who want to pursue an advanced degree which could elevate their careers to the next level and ultimately contribute to the community in a very significant manner,” she added.

CAPLA leaders have worked closely with TAR in establishing a stronger, more meaningful relationship between the University of Arizona and TAR. This partnership will benefit both institutions, as well as the real estate industry and greater community. The Dean of CAPLA, Janice Cervelli, FASLA, FCELA, expressed delight: “The real estate industry is vital to the economy and quality of life of the citizens of Arizona, and this degree helps to advance valuable real estate development. It is an honor to have the Tucson Association of REALTORS® take such generous notice of our efforts to inspire an educated yet experienced workforce. Higher education depends heavily upon the professional community’s close involvement with the access students have to programs like MRED; it provides opportunities for talent, which might otherwise be stinted, to expand. With this contribution, TAR has shown tremendous insight. We are thrilled to have their support and proud to partner with them in launching the first Master of Real Estate Development scholarship in 2015.”

TAR’s scholarship coincides with Brule-Fisher’s initiative as 2015 president. Her theme is Sustainability: the Next Step in Real Estate. She plans to accomplish this through education and the implementation of technology, science and common-sense practices.

“It starts with implementing innovative green business initiatives that impact the built environment. TAR and its members can help clients make sound real estate decisions with sustainability in mind. Our scholarship partnership with CAPLA will advance that mind-set,” she said. “We are proud to have this important collaboration with the UA College or Architecture, Planning, and Landscape Architecture. It is simply an obvious true partnership and a win-win for our members, the UA and the community at large.”

Now, more than ever, the real estate development industry needs skilled leaders with a rigorous practical and academic background in the areas of real property, urban design, construction, site development, sustainable practices, as well as real estate asset management, finance and law. CAPLA’s Master of Real Estate Development program delivers a solid, broad-based graduate-level education that produces students with outstanding leadership skills and substantial professional knowledge. The program emphasizes best development practices related to environmental sustainability, social responsibility, economic resilience, financial feasibility, deal structuring, and design excellence.

It is clear why TAR’s generosity was directed toward the MRED program; students can fulfill its requirements in a 21-month part-time capacity or full-time in 16 months. The part-time program is designed so that professionals may continue to work in their fields while attending school. MRED students include practicing professionals with experience in real estate development or a related field such as mortgage banking, construction, or planning, as well as recent graduates with a BS/BA in a related field. The program recruits students who have demonstrated excellence in their professional or academic careers and who have the potential to become industry leaders.

About the UA College of Architecture, Planning, and Landscape Architecture
The UA College of Architecture, Planning, and Landscape Architecture (CAPLA) leads the nation in sustainable design and planning for arid regions. Faculty members work at the forefront of sustainability and regenerative development, alternative energy, water conservation, landscape ecology, climate change adaptation, affordable housing and heritage preservation. Inspired by a strong passion for place and its people, CAPLA produces practitioners and scholars that champion the importance of regionalism in design and planning. The curriculum is highly integrated across the professions of architecture, landscape architecture and urban planning, and is delivered within a small, caring and diverse community strongly rooted in practice. CAPLA alumni are recognized internationally for modern desert architecture, landscape architecture and urban and regional planning and design, comprising what is known as the "Arizona School." For more information, please visit or

About the Tucson Association of REALTORS®
The Tucson Association of REALTORS® (TAR) represents the interests of some 4,800 professionals in the real estate industry in Southern Arizona. As a trade organization, it promotes enhanced communications, high business and ethical standards, a positive regulatory climate, and the professionalism and public perception of members. TAR supports the healthy growth of Southern Arizona's real estate market and is dedicated to improving our community. It was founded in 1921. For details:

The Tucson Association of REALTORS® Multiple Listing Service (TAR/MLS) is a wholly owned subsidiary of TAR. It is a reliable, cooperative database of real estate listings and sales information in Southern Arizona. TAR/MLS facilitated over $2.7 billion in real estate transactions during 2014. For details:

Media Contacts:
Bill Davidson
Communications Specialist, UA College of Architecture, Planning, and Landscape Architecture or 520-626-9935

Roger Yohem
Communications Director, Tucson Association of REALTORS® or 520-382-8796