My education has been and continues to be my central, most important investment. As a Russian-American immigrant, who moved to the United States at the age of 4, I was fortunate enough to learn this valuable lesson from a young age. Hungry for success, I took advantage of every educational opportunity available. By the time I had finished high school, I had completed every advanced math course my school had offered, including Calculus, Statistics, Linear Algebra, Differential Equations, and Multivariable Calculus.
I have maintained a conceptual continuity in my academic and professional career. Located at the heart of one of the most significant metropolitan cities, NYU provides an unparalleled learning atmosphere from the Real Estate industry’s leading professionals; therefore, I see NYU’s MSRE program as the most beneficial step for my continued professional advancement.
My parents had always wanted me to become a doctor, and I saw the pre-dental pathway as a safe investment. While I flourished in math and science, scoring in the 99.97th percentile nationally on my DAT (Dental Admission Test), I naturally gravitated towards business, finance, and investing. I took this opportunity to enroll in the business adjunct program offered through Binghamton's School of Management. For the first time, I was introduced to the science of finance - a dynamic yet delicate system that has governed civilizations throughout history; I became obsessed with its complexity. Although giving up my scholarship at NYUCD was no easy decision, it was a necessary risk to follow my passion and reach professional fulfillment.
My interest in real estate sparked in my second year of college when I first moved into off-campus housing. My landlord was an alumnus who was not much older than me at the time. By then, he had already established a respectable-sized portfolio to accommodate the growing student body. Fascinated by his success, I took it upon myself to learn from his experiences. He became my mentor and eventually allowed me to help manage several of his properties. The more I became involved with the business, the more I learned about the market on a macro level, and my fascination for real estate deepened.
Nothing excites me as much as the idea of making significant contributions to the revitalization of communities by creating affordable housing opportunities, which ultimately benefit the entire city. As Binghamton University’s student body grew, a window of opportunity emerged for a value-added investment approach: renovating foreclosed properties into affordable student housing. In the short span of 4 years, I witnessed Binghamton’s economic revamp as more businesses emerged in the once desolate city center.
During the cryptocurrency boom in 2017, I invested in the decentralized finance space. I took a role as an ICO consultant to help new blockchain projects raise investor funding through active networking. I believe that blockchain technology can optimize property sales, streamline payments, and increase access to real estate investment opportunities through tokenization. I am incredibly excited by PropTech startups; I am most passionate about big data and how it can be harnessed to create new tools and dynamic business models for real estate professionals. I look forward to staying abreast of technological developments and pushing my frontiers in this area as a graduate student at NYU.
Shortly after the cryptocurrency market collapsed, I took a position at Timberline Financial LLC to gain more exposure to various financial instruments in the debt servicing industry. Through this experience, I gained a solid foundation in sales, negotiations, and relationship-building skills. Following my entrepreneurial spirit, I later left to form an LLC partnership to create deals for multi-family properties in impoverished communities, mainly targeting Bridgeport. Through persistent networking, we secured rights to an off-market 60-unit agreement and are still in the process of finding investor funding. Earning my MS in Real Estate will provide me with the tools, knowledge, and network necessary to successfully manage a Real Estate holding company, one that will focus on investing in projects necessary to revitalize critical communities.
As a student, I bring meticulous attention to detail, unwavering determination, and a demonstrated professional and academic success track record. I believe that my non-traditional background in science will provide a unique analytical scope for tackling challenges in Real Estate. More importantly, I am eager to have the opportunity to share a classroom with an accomplished student body, as I have always thrived in collaborative environments. Nothing is more important than a deep, well-established professional network, and I plan to make the most of our global interconnectedness at XXU.