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Real Estate Masters, International Development

April 12, 2017

I am writing on behalf of my application to your distinguished Masters in Professional Studies in Real Estate Program at XXXX with a concentration in the area of International Development. A very hard working young man whose parents immigrated to America from Nigeria, I am currently enrolled in an MBA Program at XXXX University College. While I enjoy learning about business generally speaking, I have been most passionate about and engaged with real estate for the past several years and so I want very much to transfer into your program where I might be able to focus my studies exclusively in the area of real estate development. XXXX is my ideal program because of the international nature of your program, your focus on development, and perhaps most of all your mission of service to the needy as part of the historical orientation of your university.

Raised in Clinton Maryland, I went to Pittsburgh for my undergraduate studies and then moved home to Maryland. Being an international citizen is very much a part of my professional identity and self-understanding, which has been enhanced by my study abroad in Beijing, China for a full month, May 2013, helping me to adopt increasingly global perspectives and ways of seeing. I also traveled to Boznia-Herzgovinia in November of 2009 for two weeks for a function of my church; coming from a long line of Catholics dating back generations in Nigeria, my intense religious faith is one of my foremost assets in the quest to further cultivate m professional identity.  I have been back to Nigeria twice, once when I was two, and again when I was 12 and I was able to stay for 6 weeks. This experience was especially critical as it enabled me to become much more bicultural. I have also been to Canada for one month, when I was 11.

XXXX's Jesuit tradition asks for men and women to engage their communities in finding ways to help the underserved and disadvantaged member of our society. What excites me most these days, under the leadership of Pope Francis, is the increasingly international sense that we attach to the word ‘community’ in progressive Catholic circles. Day before yesterday, for example, Pope Francis has directed Catholic facilities worldwide to begin receiving and caring for refugees fleeing for their lives from Syria. I want to make my mark in life in the area of real estate development for the working poor, on an international level, in keeping with these dynamic advances in our religious faith and commitment to social justice and equality worldwide. I am drawn to XXXX’s emphasis on the importance of celebrating cultural pluralism. I also very much appreciate the thoroughgoing nature and multifaceted character of your curriculum. The way in which I see XXXX as unique is summed up by the fact that the first course every student is required to take in your program is Real Estate Ethics. I have labored mightily as a volunteer so as to be worthy of entering your program. In Pittsburgh I was part of an organization called the XXXX, tutoring, mentoring, the inner city youth of Pittsburgh. I was a public speaker for events on the XXXX Campus, seminars, sleep-ins for the homeless. I was also the economic/financial chair of the organization. XXXX Kitchen was down the street from my residence and I was a regular visitor helping out with kitchen duties and collaborating with fund drives. I see my soup-kitchen experience as at least indirectly relevant to my central, long-term goal; building affordable yet dignified communities for individual of scant resources, alongside, as part of wealthy or middle-class communities.

I am already an accomplished networker and I am engaged along with colleagues in the building of networks of socially conscious boys and men, helping our young ones to cultivate great respect for themselves as well as others, giving back energy to our communities. I also have experience in real estate, working with investors in Pittsburgh. Completing an internship with XXXX selling life insurance helped me to learn a lot about business organizations, marketing, financial models, sales and closure cycles, etc. Working at XXXX University as an Investment Center Lab Aid gave provided me with a platform to grow by helping others, students and teachers, in the management of computer programs to manage financial and investment information including the building of comprehensive reports/business plans. At TD Bank, my current employer, I have gain valuable practical experience in building long tern relationships with clients to assist them in their banking needs.

Both of my parents were born in Nigeria and came to the U.S. in the late 70's (dad) early 80's (mom). I have 5 siblings, four sisters, one brother, and I am the oldest male. In our culture the oldest son is the one who is the head of the family in the case anything happens to the parents. On top of this responsibility, my mother has instilled in me a great passion for social service, giving something back to our community. Thus, my work ethic is something that was instilled in me as a young child by my mother and this helped me early on to develop refined time management and organizational skills. Nevertheless, my grades suffered as a result of my extra-curricular activities: a Division 1 athlete, co-founder of a start-up investment company (which is now thriving), and my internship at a Fortune 500 company. On top of this, my mother became gravely ill. My mother’s illness made me stronger in many ways, my football improved, and I proved myself enormously successful at managing finances and operations for a moving and storage company. My experience as a founder of a start-up company is another driving force behind my optimism and high level of motivation. I joined with another member of my football team who was already a real estate investor and together we were able to learn from a variety of real estate investors in the Pittsburgh market, assisting them in rehabs, construction, and market research, finding properties that represented excellent investment opportunities. Real Estate is now my life. I read constantly, go to seminars, and I am now buying and selling my own real estate as well as assisting other buyers.

I look forward to a lifetime of research, examining, in particular, the technology and its applications that drive real estate investment and development and rehabilitation, making for "smarter living". Everything that is sustainable and green is the principle constant in my philosophy, constantly negotiating with the environment around us in pursuit of the right thing to do, the right way to live.

God is the leading force in my life and I want to express my religious faith and exercise the joy that I find in loving God by building low-cost, sustainable schools, hospitals, shelters, and learning centers, especially in Nigeria. My family’s country of origin, my home as well, Nigeria is undergoing one of the most sustained and widespread states of social disintegration and indiscriminate violence in the history of Africa if not the world as a result of a fundamentalist insurgency known as Boko Harem, now in partnership with ISIS and Al-Qaeda. Our country is in need of a great deal of assistance and this will be true for a very long time. I rejoice that our Lord has plans for me.

I want to advance the cause of clean energy adoption at the same time what I contribute to meeting the ethical imperatives of dignified housing for all, especially the working poor and their families. I seek not to overcome disparities, but to build bridges in sustainable ways that enable commerce to thrive and industry to flourish, at the same time that workers are able to live with their families in secure and dignified housing in a sustainable fashion that helps them to educate their children for new tomorrows.

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