Fitzgerald Institute for Real Estate announces winners of inaugural student case competition

Ten undergraduate student teams competed in a new University of Notre Dame real estate case competition over the 2020-2021 winter session. Hosted by the Fitzgerald Institute for Real Estate (FIRE), the goal of the competition was to give students the opportunity to showcase their financial knowledge, creativity, and understanding of real estate valuations by analyzing a complex acquisition and investment project. 

Each team of five students prepared an investment presentation for a project based in London, which included a complete financial model, investment highlights, market overview, risk analysis, and written justification for their team’s decisions. Teams were also matched with a Notre Dame graduate working in real estate to help guide them, which also served as a networking opportunity. 

Students presented their findings to a mock investment committee composed of industry leaders with experience in making investment decisions. Two teams were selected as finalists and were provided additional instructions to refine their findings in preparation for a final pitch to the mock investment committee, followed by a question-and-answer session.  

“Our case competition format provided students a learning opportunity that mimicked what they would experience out of school, while surrounded by top professionals serving as mentors and judges to guide and support their growth. This allowed students to display their work ethic and abilities to our industry leaders and sponsors on the mock investment committee,” said Eugenio Acosta, program director of FIRE and director of undergraduate studies for the minor in real estate

The inaugural case competition's winning team included Dylan Briggs, Joseph Duggan, Edward Moriarty, Thomas Romano, and Padraic Walsh. The second-place team included Patrick Heffernan, Kelly Koons, Michael Lynch, David McMurtrie, and Alec Vasquez. Both teams received prizes for their achievement.

“We were grateful for the demand from our real estate students to participate in this inaugural competition,” said Acosta. “With such overwhelming interest, we plan to expand the case competition program, increase access for our students, and introduce other interdisciplinary projects. We welcome the support and participation of our alumni network and their firms to help us grow and improve upcoming competitions.” 

FIRE aims to host another student case competition this coming academic year. For those interested in supporting the competitions, please contact Eugenio Acosta at


Eugenio Acosta / Program Director

Fitzgerald Institute for Real Estate / University of Notre Dame / 574.631.6242 

The University of Notre Dame is a private research and teaching university inspired by its Catholic mission. Located in South Bend, Indiana, its researchers are advancing human understanding through research, scholarship, education, and creative endeavor in order to be a repository for knowledge and a powerful means for doing good in the world. For more information, please see or @UNDResearch.

Originally published by Brandi Wampler at on April 26, 2021.