Below is an interview with Ashleigh Coaxum, the Senior Program Manager for Real Estate for SEO.
What is SEO and who is it for?
SEO Career is the nation’s premier professional development program providing Black, Hispanic, and Native American undergrads with pre-internship development, training, and internship support across multiple lines of business. SEO Career currently partners with 60+ organizations offering summer internships, and has a 35+ year track record of matching talent with opportunity.
What is the SEO program like? Where is it and when does it take place?
The SEO Career program is accomplished through two phases: 1) Edge and 2) Success. Participants receive the coaching and technical training needed to compete for paid internship opportunities with SEO partner organizations, with the goal of landing a full-time job offer at the conclusion of the internship. SEO Career launched in 1980 and has over 6,400 alumni to date.
In the Edge phase, participants receive:
- Industry exposure to SEO partners
- Coaches who are invested in student’s success
- Mock-interviews prepare students for what interviews are really like in their desired fields
- Hand-selected industry resources and a custom on-line training curriculum
Students who perform well and complete Edge are recommended to our partners for internship opportunities. No matter where their path leads, Edge sets students up for internship success.
Once an Edge Participant accepts an internship offer at one of SEO Career’s partners, they move on to the Success phase of SEO Career. All accepted Success Interns must attend the Career Summit, a full week of pre-internship immersive training and networking in New York City. Success Interns have the exclusive opportunity to learn from industry titans, attend partner-hosted events, learn technical skills from expert instructors, and build a professional network that will last a lifetime.
Tell me more about the Real Estate Track
In 2017, SEO Career partnered with the Pension Real Estate Association to create the Real Estate Track, to increase diversity in the industry. Founded in 1979, the Pension Real Estate Association (PREA) is a non-profit trade association for the global institutional real estate investment industry. PREA currently lists over 700 corporate member firms across the United States, Canada, Europe and Asia. Its members include public and corporate pension funds, endowments, foundations, Taft-Hartley funds, insurance companies, investment advisory firms, REITs, developers, real estate operating companies and industry service providers.
In the 2018 Summer, SEO helped 47 Black and Latino students secure real estate internships in the most competitive private equity firms, financial institutions, investment management firms and public pension funds in the country. Students interned in roles such as Acquisitions, Asset Management, Corporate and Business Services, Development, Portfolio Management, Property Management and Brokerage.
REFM was integral in providing both online and in-person financial modeling training to the interns. Many students commented their REFM training helped them understand key real estate concepts and gain an competitive edge amongst their peers.
How can eligible students apply to SEO, and what is the deadline?
SEO Career applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. The next deadline to apply is December 1 & January 1. The SEO Career Application, along with our Frequently Asked Questions, can be found on our website here:
- Completing online technical training coursework specific to your industry/internship to enhance your technical skills and knowledge
- Maintaining contact with your Career Coach, an excellent resource to help you with any advice on how to navigate corporate culture and the offer process
- Participating in interview preparation for potential partner interviews
- Attending required Career events (including the week-long Career Summit in NYC)
- You must be a Black, Hispanic or Native American student enrolled in an accredited, four-year, U.S. college or university
- Freshmen, sophomores and juniors are welcome
- All majors
- GPA of 3.2. or above required for competitive candidates; Candidates with a GPA of 3.0 will be considered