The ICSC Blog

ICSC Student Comments About RECon

What are you doing for your future and how are you assuring your success?

If you are looking for opportunities, connections and knowledge, read on.

In real estate, it is not always what you know, but who you know. Business transactions are done with mutual trust and established relationships. When you are in college the opportunities to meet professional are not always available. Being a student member of the ICSC provides you with a door, it is up to you to open it and explore the priceless and endless opportunities.

Going to ICSC RECon was without a doubt an invaluable experience. ICSC RECon puts the industry into a perspective, you have individuals from all different areas of the industry willing to share their experience and offer great advice. The opportunities at RECon are not available anywhere else. Over 30,000 individuals from every part of the real estate industry are gathered together for few days. Where else would you have an opportunity to have a mentor appointment with a marketing director, lunch with VP of sales, coffee with a developer and dinner with a broker?

This was my first year being a member of ICSC and going to RECon, I wasn’t really sure what to expect. Starting at the first timers orientation everyone was welcoming and full of great advice.

I thought to myself, people are here to do business, not to meet with college students, after all what do we have to offer to their million dollar deals? 60% of all retail real estate deals are done within those few days at the convention! To my surprise, the convention and people were not like anything I had ever expected!

Networking always scares me at the beginning, but I made the brave decision to go to one of the networking speed session. I was able to meet with over 20 professionals that met with me for a few minutes and talk to me about what they do, how they got started and what I should do as an incoming graduate to be successful in the business.

One of my favorite parts of the convention was the mentorship appointments. With the help of ICSC, students have the opportunity to sign up and meet with experts in their desired fields. My mentor was truly amazing; she had great advice and we still keep in touch. The relationships you build at RECon and through the ICSC are invaluable.

Florida State University was able to bring 10 students to the conference. Many of us were first timers; some had been coming back for years. I am proud to say that two of our recent graduates were able to secure jobs through the conference; others were given great opportunities to shadow and intern.

If you go to one conference this year, make sure it is the ICSC RECon. I graduate this August with degrees in marketing and management and I continue to meet and network with professionals that I have met through the ICSC.

By building your network, you are building your future. Take this opportunity to explore the different areas of real estate and find your best match.

Kristina Gekov
www.linkedin.com/in/kristinagekov
Florida State University

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