NAIOPWA Foundation: Building Community, Advancing the Industry, and Supporting the Future of CRE

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Through the NAIOP Washington State Foundation, NAIOPWA is able to apply the skills and resources of our membership to initiatives that give back to our community, engage students and foster their careers, and help create a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive commercial real estate industry. These initiatives are possible because of the generous support of our Foundation Committee Sponsors. Click on any committee name below to learn more about these sponsorship opportunities:

Community Enhancement
CE Blog 2The NAIOPWA Foundation annually partners with a deserving organization for Community Enhancement, a day of service that provides much-needed upgrades and maintenance to a selected project site. In 2023, we partnered with YMCA of Greater Seattle to revitalize Camp Kilworth in Federal Way. Click here to watch the event highlights.

The Community Enhancement Committee is excited to partner with Northshore School District for our 2024 project, Shelton View Elementary School. Located in Bothell, Shelton View hosts general education, highly capable, and elementary advanced programs for a diverse student population. One of the District’s older elementary buildings, Shelton View has not received any substantial improvements in over a decade. With the help of NAIOPWA members and sponsors, Community Enhancement hopes to bring some much-needed improvements that will help create a safe, healthy, and vibrant campus for the students, staff, and community to enjoy. 

The number of projects we complete is directly related to the amount of funds we raise and volunteers who come out to support us on event day. Click here to review sponsorship opportunities and save the date for Saturday, September 28!

Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion (DEI) Intern Program
Intern 1The DEI Committee started their Summer Intern Program in 2019 with a mission to attract and inspire students of diverse ethnicities, genders, abilities, and sexual orientations to seek careers in CRE. The six-week program is open to current college students and interns at member companies and provides the students opportunities to interact more closely with NAIOPWA, connect with peers, and experience the breadth of the CRE industry. The Program gathers students weekly for panel discussions with a group of industry leaders (developers, engineers, GCs, HR representatives, etc.) who discuss their roles in CRE, provide insight into their day-to-day lives, and offer advice for starting a career. The Committee also organizes property tours for students to see firsthand the contributions of CRE in Seattle.

The 2023 Intern Program was the largest and most engaged class to date. Since the program closed, multiple intern participants have continued to engage with NAIOPWA, taking advantage of their free student membership to attend events and participate in other member programs. Some students have done the Program multiple years in a row and went on to start careers with member companies.

With the support of our DEI sponsors, we hope to continue this success into 2024. Intern applications will open by May with the program scheduled to begin in late June.

DEI Scholarship
In 2023, NAIOPWA partnered with University of Washington to create a scholarship to their Commercial Real Estate Certification Program, an eight-month course that prepares students for a career in CRE by providing insight into best practices and trends and helping them build industry connections. The NAIOPWA DEI Scholarship is dedicated to women and underrepresented minorities looking for ways to strengthen their place in the CRE industry. By lowering the financial barrier of entry to the certification, we can help diversify the UW class and by extent our industry.

Each scholarship winner receives a free student membership and is asked to participate on the DEI Committee for one year. The intention is to not only aid with their education costs, but also provide mentorship and networking opportunities within the NAIOPWA community to further their careers beyond the certification. Thanks to the support of our DEI sponsors, NAIOPWA was able to award scholarships to two students, covering 84% of their tuition costs. We hope in the future to be able to expand the program to cover the entire cost of tuition for more students. 

The success of our DEI Intern and Scholarship Programs received national recognition by NAIOP at the 2024 Chapter Leadership and Legislative Retreat where we received Chapter Merit Awards for Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion and Membership. Click here to learn more and support these award-winning programs

Real Estate Challenge
REC 2The Pacific Northwest Real Estate Challenge is an annual development case competition in which teams from University of Washington and Portland State University real estate programs compete. The Challenge provides students hands-on, real-world experience in addition to connecting them with local professionals, some of whom may one day be their employers or colleagues.

This year’s Challenge is asking students to explore the world of adaptive reuse. The teams have been introduced to a hypothetical scenario in which an owner is looking to sell an iconic building in downtown Seattle. They will be provided with site information and work with local market experts to craft a feasibility proposal that maximizes investor returns. On March 7, the students will present their proposals to a panel of judges, and the winning team will be announced at that evening's networking event hosted by the Developing Leaders.

The Real Estate Challenge relies on sponsorships and individual donations to help cover event costs and student travel expenses. Click here to learn how you can support these student teams. 

Student Memberships
NAIOPWA is proud to offer free membership to students, paying their NAIOP Corporate dues fees out of the Foundation. These free memberships offer students access to all NAIOPWA events and programming (most at a reduced registration rate). Over the last few years, we have greatly increased our student membership (79 in 2021, 127 in 2022, and 195 in 2023) thanks to growing partnerships with local universities and student-focused programming such as our DEI Intern Program and Real Estate Challenge. We value our student members as an investment in the future of NAIOPWA and the CRE industry at large. 

If you are a current student interested in NAIOPWA membership, please email [email protected] for a student member application. 

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