President's Desk

Educating Designees

One of the three primary objectives of the institute's strategic plan is to "provide the highest quality education for commercial and investment real estate professionals." There's no doubt among industry professionals that our designation program fulfills this mandate. CCIM Institute offers simply the best commercial real estate education available.

However various research surveys throughout the years have shown that designees are interested in a CCIM-provided post-designation education program. It makes sense. Consummate professionals realize that education is a lifelong pursuit. Today's commercial real estate market operates in a manner that is light years away from standard practices of even five or 10 years ago. That is why the institute has worked hard to integrate technology into its education programs and member benefits and continues to look for ways to offer designees the opportunity to advance their commercial real estate knowledge.

To this end, a plan was approved at the fall business meetings to create a new non-designation education department at the institute. This exciting new venture has a multiphase agenda that will help determine how to best fill the need for non-designation education. Overseen by the volunteer CCIM designees on the Education Committee and our extremely capable education staff, the department's goal is to ultimately develop non-designation programs that will support the objectives associated with the institute's current strategic plan.

Throughout 2007 there will be extensive research to identify and recommend specific strategies for non-designation programming in subsequent years. Staff and committee members are creating a survey that will be distributed to the membership this spring. This survey will assess interest in a variety of topics and delivery formats and help guide the planning process. A work group will meet to formulate a more-detailed plan for the development and implementation of the non-designation education program; this plan will be presented at this year's fall meetings in San Antonio.

Member input is crucial to the development of program topics as well as the choice of delivery formats that are now available, which include classroom, podcasts, Webinars, and online courses.

An education program that is tailored to the professional interests of CCIM designees provides a valuable member service. The creation of a new non-designation education department focuses staff and financial resources toward the development of market-driven, timely, and relevant education programs customized for CCIM designees. These programs will give designees yet another opportunity to gain a competitive advantage in their markets.

Additionally, the education program not only will increase designees' awareness of the tools and services available to them but also will help them learn how to apply these tools in their businesses. At the same time, such a program enhances the recognition of the CCIM designation. It provides further proof to the commercial real estate industry at large that the CCIM education program meets the needs of today's professionals. This offers an important opportunity for designation promotion and has the potential to recruit new candidates into the designation education program.

I hope that you share my excitement for this new endeavor. The institute supplies us with a strong base of knowledge and non-designation education courses will allow us to build upon that throughout our careers. Watch for more information about this exciting new program as it develops throughout the year.

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