The Next Generation of Real Estate Leaders

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Since he was 12 years old, Joseph Quansah knew he wanted to be in real estate.

It was a dream that he and his best friend from middle school had meticulously built year-after-year. Last Thursday, another huge building block fell into place for the rising senior at Auburn High School after he attended a lecture on diversity in real estate given by the Alabama Center for Real Estate’s (ACRE) Executive Director Grayson Glaze. The lecture was a part of the week-long Diversity in Business Bridge Program (DBBP) hosted by the Culverhouse College of Business at the University of Alabama and made possible by the support of the Protective Life Company.

ACRE’s Executive Director Grayson Glaze poses for a photo with two students from the Diversity in Business Bridge Program. From left are Joseph Quansah, Grayson Glaze and Daniela Hidalgo. Photo by James Benedetto


“I really wanted to ask him a lot of questions,” Quansah said. “I got infatuated with the idea of real estate. For a long time I’ve watched a bunch of real estate videos like ‘Bigger Pockets’ because I’m just trying to expand my knowledge. … This week has been really good for me opportunity-wise and just seeing all of the possibilities of what I can do within real estate.”

Quansah along with 26 rising high school seniors along with six incoming freshmen at UA were introduced to ACRE’s CORE program. CORE is a free eight-module credential course that combines live and self-guided real estate career content along with building skills necessary for graduates to succeed in the industry.

Like Quansah, rising senior at Austin High School, Daniela Hidalgo, also had her interest piqued about the CORE program and the real estate industry.

“I had a lot of questions going in and now I have even more questions,” Hidalgo said. “That’s what he said was learning, you learn one thing and then you want to know more. … I wanted to learn everything that I could so I can decide which part of the industry I want to go into.”

Since its inception in Fall 2021 the CORE program has helped students in 45 states from 309 different schools explore careers within real estate and to teach them the tools for success in the field. The program has an 84% completion rate, doling out 516 credentials in a two-year span, with 91% of students who take the course stating they are more interested in the field as a result of CORE.

ACRE’s Executive Director Grayson Glaze hosted a lecture with students from the Diversity in Business Bridge Program last Thursday. Photo by James Benedetto


CORE’s success is the reason why Director of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Initiatives at Culverhouse, Marcus Cotton, invited Glaze to come speak to the DBBP for the third year in-a-row on Thursday.

“While we’re teaching them their opportunities in business, nobody does it better than Grayson,” Cotton said. “We have several students whose families are in construction, in real estate and even though they may be the first generation to go to college, they are taking what their families have taught them and collaborating with Grayson. They are finding ways to take their college education and what their families have taught them to another level.”

For more information about CORE, visit or check out the ACRE website at

“It’s an honor to speak to the students who are in the Diversity in Business Bridge Program,” Glaze said. “I look forward to working with the newest members of CORE and the next game-changers in the real estate industry including many that will one day become part of the nation’s largest real estate here at the Capstone”.

More than 30 Diversity in Business Bridge Program students attended ACRE Executive Director Grayson Glaze’s lecture on the CORE program. Photo by James Benedetto


About ACRE

The Alabama Center for Real Estate (ACRE) is housed within the University of Alabama’s Culverhouse College of Business. ACRE’s vision is to be a valued resource that supports Alabama’s real estate industry and promotes economic and workforce development. The Center is organized to provide relevant resources in the areas of teaching, research, and service.

Since its founding in 1996, the heart of ACRE is advancing relationships by providing servant leadership with a passionate, adaptable and humble spirit. The relationship between ACRE and industry stakeholders is one of the center’s greatest strengths. Stakeholders partner with the center to enhance and enrich the center’s resources shared within the state’s real estate community.

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