A Call to Work with the Higher Ed Student Affairs Community: Creating Mentorship and Growth Programs in Our Residential Communities

Capstone Management Partners has an important role to play when it comes to diversity and inclusion.  In terms of sheer numbers, CMP employs more staff than any other division of the company.  Property management often serves as the initial entry point into their career for many real estate development and management professionals, whether that be as an RA in college or maybe a leasing team member at a local community. Our portfolio spans coast-to-coast, and includes numerous college and university-affiliated properties in major urban communities.  College campuses by their very nature tend to be more diverse and thus a typical applicant pool for our on-site service, administrative and professional positions can yield a breadth of diverse talent.  CMP is proud to provide leadership in the recruitment, selection and training of a diverse workforce. However, we have more to accomplish when it comes to developing cultural competency with our team members and promoting diversity throughout every level of our organization.

On the whole, the real estate industry is not as diverse or inclusive as it needs to, or should be.  According to Multifamily Insiders (2020), a recent benchmark study revealed that the percentage of women in senior VP, managing director and partner level positions in real estate is less than 27%. In addition, there are still persistent wage gaps when it comes to women and people of color.  So, how does CMP create a plan and a path to improve representation across all levels? First, we are working with Capstone’s DEI Council to develop a foundation for what mentorship and growth programs could look like in our communities.  We have all benefited from mentors at some point in our career, and it is essential that we identify high-potential individuals from under-represented populations and provide the mentoring that will help them achieve their full potential and advance in their career.  This is a new initiative for CMP, and one we look forward to fully implementing in 2022.

Let’s start the conversation. We’d love to hear from you on ideas for building out this program. What has your campus done successfully? What are some ideas that you have that maybe a larger group could help you accomplish? I’d like to setup an initial dialog where we can share ideas and most importantly hear from the higher ed community on what you would like to see the private sector implement for cultural competency, promotion of diversity and mentorship programs on a community-level. Contact me at mbrown@capstonemail.com.

Author: Matthew Brown, President Capstone Management Partners