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UM’s Diversity in Spotlight as Thought Leaders Exchange Ideas on South Florida as Latin American Hub and Premier Real Estate Destination

July 28, 2014
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Pictured, left to right: Eugene Anderson, dean, UM School of Business Administration; Fernando Harb, vice president of tourism and sales, Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention and Visitors Bureau; Mel Martinez, former US Senator, chairman of Southeast and Latin America, JP Morgan Chase and Co.; and Eric Olafson, manager of Intergovernmental Affairs / Cargo Development

Gene Anderson, dean of the School of Business, was among the thought leaders who shared their perspectives about South Florida at the Forbes LATAM South Florida Real Estate Forum in Miami July 23.

The TED-style conference featured discussions on topics ranging from emerging neighborhoods in South Florida to real estate marketing in 2050. The goal was to educate the audience on trends and challenges in today's real estate market.

"Currently more than 30 percent of the revenue generated by the real estate industry in South Florida is made possible thanks to investment originating from Latin America," said Edward de Valle II, Vice President of Forbes LATAM. "I believe this forum will be key to achieving South Florida's potential in regards to this subject."

In a panel called "Why South Florida?" Dean Anderson, shared the stage with Fernando Harb, vice president of tourism and sales for the Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention and Visitors Bureau; Gisela Marti, vice president of marketing and tourism for the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau; Alyce Robertson, executive director of the Miami Downtown Development Authority; Mel Martinez, former U.S. Senator, chairman of Southeast and Latin America, JP Morgan Chase and Co.; Andria Muñiz Amador, public affairs manager for the Port of Miami; and Giraldo Gutierrez, chief operating officer of e-Merge Americas.

   
  

Sam Azar, an anchor at WSVN Fox, asked Anderson what the University does to market its educational programs to Latin America and beyond.

"We believe a world-class city needs world-class institutions and we are striving to be a world-class research university here in South Florida," Anderson said. "We try to market very heavily the message that we are America's Next Great Research University."

Anderson went on to say that UM promotes the university as a place that has risen rapidly in the world and combines diversity and student quality like no other institution of its kind. He noted 25 percent of the School of Business undergraduate enrollment is international students.

"That's an incredible figure for a U.S. school," Anderson said. "We're the only U.S. research university that comes anywhere close to that."

Drilling down into the School's student body, Anderson said another 15 percent to 20 percent of UM's students were born outside of the U.S. and were raised here. In terms of international marketing, he noted, the University has many efforts in Latin America but also targets students in the Middle East, Europe and Asia.

"We have incredible international diversity, which is a great aspect of our school that's attractive to students and parents around the world that want their children to learn from others that have lived and worked all over the world — and to start building a worldwide network," Anderson said. "We believe we are attracting a great pool of talented students, which hopefully in the long run will serve the hiring needs of the Miami business community, especially in industries like finance and logistics. At the same time, also we're doing a lot to attract their parents here. More and more of the world's elite are coming to Miami to tour the U and many end up touring the real estate market, too!"

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