Despite current state of affairs, 2020 has been a good year for MBA student Crischell Bacarro. Crischell has been awarded the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) Foundation Graduate Diversity Scholarship. This $5,000 scholarship includes a mentorship program and a trip to RECon in Las Vegas in May 2021. Even more impressive is this is the third real estate industry scholarship she’s received this year. Crischell is also the recipient of The Eric J. Almquist Nexus Scholarship and the NAIOP and Prologis Inclusion in Commercial Real Estate Scholarship.
“I’m beyond ecstatic and so grateful to be representing LMU for these industry scholarships,” she says.
Crischell is a senior associate at Tishman International Companies, where she oversees operational strategy, project management and transactions coordination. Her responsibilities include due diligence, underwriting, investment analysis, investor reporting and corporate entities compliance. Prior to joining Tishman in 2013, Crischell conducted research in the Philippines as a Fulbright Scholar where she studied the country’s indigenous culture and its influence on contemporary feminist art.
A first-generation immigrant, Crischell was born in Manila and is a fluent Tagalog speaker. She’s a member and/or volunteer for ICSC, NAIOP, ULI, Pacific Council on International Policy, Filipinos in Institutional Real Estate (FIIRE), Project REAP, the Fulbright Association and the Sierra Club Los Angeles Chapter.
Crischell is eager to use the knowledge and network she continues to gain from Tishman, LMU and her professional affiliations to develop projects and lead investments with a focus on increasing awareness and encouraging cross-sector partnerships on topics such as community development and workforce housing. She shares how the LMU MBA is getting her closer to this goal.
Why did you decide to pursue your MBA and why did you choose LMU?
Transitioning into a different industry was the main reason why I decided to pursue my MBA. I’ve worked in commercial real estate since 2012 and I wanted to bridge this experience with the operational and strategic skills necessary to implement projects that have a socially-responsible impact. My plan is to apply for the Asian Development Bank’s Young Professionals Program as soon as I graduate. I want to support ventures that will secure private investment, enhance infrastructures and generate economic growth within the countries that ADB serves.
As an LMU undergraduate alum, I had firsthand experience of the university’s intimate class setting, strong sense of community and collaborative learning environment. The LMU faculty were instrumental in helping me establish a career and find my purpose. Now in my pursuit for professional growth, CBA’s graduate staff – and especially Dean Dayle Smith – have continued to support me and help me develop the moral courage and confidence to assist communities, locally and beyond.
What class/professor has stood out so far and why?
Dr. Kala Seal’s classes, both “Business Statistics” and “Business Analytics,” have been the toughest classes for me. His courses are very challenging, but they’ve also provided the most insights, and the Excel skills I’ve learned have been very useful at work. Dr. Seal’s knowledge and passion about these subjects make him a good professor. But what makes him exceptional is his genuine interest in students and his sincere desire to teach.
What’s the biggest takeaway you’ve learned in your first year as an MBA candidate?
This COVID situation reminds us that things don’t always go according to plan. For me, it was having this whole action plan of transitioning into a different industry, only to have my passion for commercial real estate renewed. The classes that I became really immersed in were the ones which had components that were directly related to commercial development, whether it was looking at eco-efficiency in buildings during Dr. Trevor Zink’s “Environmental Strategy” course, or evaluating capital structures in Dr. Julian Zhang’s “Corporate Finance” class. But that’s the thing about an LMU education: it gives you options and provides opportunities beyond what you initially envisioned.