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Hampton University takes home the win at Philip Payton Society Real Estate Case Competition

Authored by Baker Program in Real Estate alumnus Ali Daye, ’19, Cornell University

The Philip Payton Society for Minority Real Estate Professionals, a club established by students at Cornell University’s Baker Program in Real Estate, is pleased to announce that a team from Hampton University is the winner of the second annual Philip Payton Society Real Estate Case Competition.

The case competition targets undergraduates at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and is designed to expose underrepresented minorities to the commercial real estate industry. This year over 40 students from 13 schools participated, with teams comprised of roughly four students. The teams were each given a case study to examine and submit a final analysis. The top five presentations were selected for a final round run-off, where teams delivered a +synopsis of their recommendations and answered questions virtually in front of a panel of distinguished industry judges and prominent Cornell alumni. In addition to Hampton University receiving first place, North Carolina A&T received second place and Tuskegee University placed third.

“We were highly impressed with the students’ talents, skills and enthusiasm at the competition this year,” said Alex Susskind, associate dean at Cornell’s School of Hotel Administration. “The competition continues to grow in popularity, and we’re very pleased with the outcomes. With this strong momentum, we’re hoping for an even larger turn out next year.”

In addition to honing the participants’ analytical and presentation skills, the case study competition also included educational programs to introduce underrepresented minorities to the wide range of career opportunities available in commercial real estate, expand their knowledge of the various property types within the industry, and explore the variety of roles in the value creation process, from ground-up development to leasing, property management, financing and investment.

“The case competition was designed to promote a deeper understanding of commercial real estate opportunities within underrepresented minority students,” said Victor Younger, SHA director of diversity and inclusion. “The event is geared toward college undergraduates who want to learn more about the inner workings of commercial real estate and come away with a renewed excitement about how to advance their interests and aspirations.”

Schools participating in the final round of the case competition included Tuskegee University, Florida A&M University, Morgan State, North Carolina A&T and Hampton University. The students represented a range of academic majors including business, economics, construction management, accounting and architecture. Winning teams received cash prizes (1st place – $2500, 2nd place -$1500 and 3rd place $1000) and all participants received a special Cornell swag bag, sponsored by the Cornell Real Estate Council (CREC).

“As a three-decade old, 2,000-member non-profit organization with a robust Diversity, Equity and Inclusion initiative, the Cornell Real Estate Council was thrilled to partner with the Philip Payton Society in sponsoring this case competition and funding prize money. Our industry will certainly benefit if we can encourage these bright and ambitious students to pursue real estate careers and contribute to solving critical challenges in the years ahead” said David Rupert, President of the Cornell Real Estate Council and a Cornell alumnus.

The case competition was coordinated by Cody Perez – President of the Philip Payton Society, Amanyi Richardson – Vice President of the Philip Payton Society, Ali Daye – Baker ’19 and Victor Younger –Director of Diversity and Inclusion at the School of Hotel Administration.

The Baker Program is a two-year master program jointly administered between the School of Hotel Administration in the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business and Cornell’s College of Art, Architecture and Planning.

Watch a recap of the student presentations here: 2021 Philip Payton Society Case Competition


Winning Teams:

Hampton University

Jovaan Volcy – Junior – Economics

Jordan Durham-Wallace – Senior – Accounting

Ja’Quan Fraiser – Sophomore – Economics

Kharis Jones – Senior – Management


NC A&T State University

Quincy Sandaire – Sophomore – Economics

Randolph Washington – Junior – Construction Management

Jahwonna Jones – Senior – Management/Entrepreneurship


Tuskegee University

Denisha Underwood – Senior – Accounting

Taylor King – Senior – Accounting

Jazymin Balous – Senior – Sales & Marketing

Matthew Kenty – Junior – Finance


Other Participating Schools:

Florida A&M University

Spelman College

Morehouse College

Tennessee State University

Jackson State University

Delaware State University

Fort Valley State University

Northern Virginia College

Morgan State University