Student Housing & University Real Estate Initiative

The mission of The SHURE Initiative is to improve student lives and enhance the built environment in university neighbourhoods.


March 18-19, 2024
University of British Columbia

Featured Speakers & Advisors

Emmanuel Adegboyega
President Executive Board, Residence Hall Association (RHA), SFU Residences
David Agosti
Director – Parking & Sustainable Mobility Services, Simon Fraser University
Neena Arora
Sr National Account Executive, Starbucks Coffee Canada, Inc.
Greg Dewling
President and Chief Executive Officer, University of Alberta Properties Trust
Michael Geller
Adjunct Professor SFU Centre for Sustainable Development, School of Resource & Environmental Management, Principal, The Geller Group
Mark Goudsblom
AVP, Campus Planning and Facilities Management, University of the Fraser Valley
Kieran Janes
Real Estate Manager, Loblaw Companies Limited
Meeta Lele
Architect, DIALOG
Ajay Patel
President & CEO, Vancouver Community College
Mike Porritt
Vice President – International, Advisory Services, The Scion Group
Tayber Yastremski
President, Sustainable Projects Group
Donald Yen
Adam Jacobs
Senior National Director, Research - Canada, Colliers
My name is Emmanuel Adegboyega. I am a Political Science major with an International Studies and Criminology minor. I am the current Residence Hall Association (RHA) President at SFU and a councillor on the Simon Fraser Student Society (SFSS). My passion is to advocate for students and to be a voice for the voiceless. I am currently in my third year of my degree and I aspire to go to law school after my undergraduate studies.
Michael Geller is a Vancouver based planner, real estate consultant, property developer, and retired architect, with five decades’ experience in the public, private and institutional sectors. He is also an adjunct professor in SFU’s Centre for Sustainable Development and School of Resource and Environmental Management. He is president of The Geller Group which specializes in planning, real estate consulting, and development management for planned communities and complex residential and mixed-use projects.
Meeta is an experienced, design-oriented architect with a solid background in leading institutional and commercial projects from concept to commissioning. She has designed diverse project types across North America and has led projects across a broad range of sectors, including corporate and workspaces, science & technology, educational, industrial, retail, transit, and mixed-use developments. Meeta brings a progressive attitude to her
role as an architect, whether in energy efficiency or using technology in building design.
Ajay Patel was confirmed as president of Vancouver Community College (VCC) on January 24, 2020. He first joined VCC in May 2019 as Vice-President, Enterprise and International Development, and entered the role of interim president in September 2019.Ajay also serves as the Board Chair, for the Canadian Bureau for International Education and was honoured with the BC Council for International Education Distinguished Leadership Award in 2019. He serves on the College and Institutes of Canada’s International Advisory Committee and the Creative Technology Education Committee for DigiBC. Ajay has also received numerous other awards including the City of Vancouver Parks and Recreation’s Volunteer of the Year and the Sport BC President’s Award.
Mike Porritt has 15 years of Executive Director or Director level experience in student housing at institutions in the United States and Canada as well as purpose-built off campus student housing in Waterloo and London, Ontario. His work includes the development of academic integration programs now in place today within residential programs at McGill University (Quebec), Trent University (Ontario), Winona State University (Minnesota) and Appalachian State University (North Carolina). Combined with his experience in market analysis, planning for new construction and major renovations, he contributes a wealth of knowledge both in the Canadian higher education and residential landscape and the US student housing sector.
Tayber Yastremski was born into the world of energy and sustainability growing up in a household of entrepreneurs and clean energy innovators. Calling Tayber a highly motivated individual is an understatement, he earned his Masters of Engineering in Clean Energy Engineering, holds a CEM and EP designation, is the president of the Association of Energy Engineers (AEE) Metro Vancouver chapter, the past president of the AEE Alberta Chapter, was awarded the Directors Inspirational Award by the Provincial government, and was awarded as one of Canada's Clean50 for 2023.
Adam Jacobs is the national head of research for Colliers Canada. He has appeared in numerous publications and media outlets including BNN, the Globe and Mail and the Financial Post. He was previously in leadership positions at Cushman and Wakefield and Oxford Properties. He holds a PhD from the University of Wisconsin. His interests are the fundamentals underpinning real estate including demographics, the labour market, and the investment environment.

About: SHURE is a unique platform that brings all types of real estate impacted by the university environment into focus, including the myriad of on-campus buildings (academic, athletic, retail, self-storage, cold storage, housing, mixed-use, office) and off-campus buildings (conventional multifamily for-rent, residential, private student housing, purpose-built student accommodation, faculty housing and mixed-used).

Indeed, Canada’s population is rapidly growing, driven by general immigration and a surge in international student enrollment. Canada has become a popular destination for students in global regions due to its high quality of life, stable government, and world-renowned post-secondary institutions. Many students seek to live on-campus or near the university for these reasons. In addition, due to the above-average quality of life in many university neighbourhoods, members of the public and commercial entities are seeking out properties in the proximity of the academic institutions. For these reasons, there is a significant lack of available real estate in university environments. SHURE is the premier platform that brings together all the stakeholders in the university environment in this engaging and productive business development exchange.

With the mission to improve student lives and enhance the built environment in university neighbourhoods, SHURE Vancouver & Western Canada will convene on March 18-19, 2024, at the University of British Columbia. Attendees and participants will represent the most active university real estate executives  (including property trusts and boards of trustees), commercial real estate developers, institutional investors, capital sources, and other owners in the market. 

In addition, SHURE will bring together the most innovative firms working in property technology and campus technology. 

“SHURE is a not-to-be-missed event for professionals and executives who work in or support university real estate and student accommodation,” Andrew Parr, Associate Vice-President – Student Housing and Community Services, The University of British Columbia.

“I wanted to personally thank you for this amazing  event.”

– Jonas Emre, Founder & CEO, Harrington Housing


“Thanks for putting together a great conference.”

– Neil Murray, Development & Asset Manager, Podium Developments


“My thanks for such a wonderful event.”

– Valerie Bruce, Interim Director – Student Housing and Community Care, Toronto Metropolitan University



The following is a list of topics that will be covered in each of three separate tracks. For an in-depth look at topic breakdowns, speakers and additional learning opportunities, please request our full agendas here. Agendas are subject to change.


Thesis: Universities are often the most impactful municipal landlords, boasting a robust portfolio of academic, athletic facilities, retail and housing assets. Learn from property trust executives, university leadership and other stakeholders about master plans and campus visions.


MARCH 19 TRACK 1: Accommodation for Student Housing

Thesis: Multifamily developers and purpose-built student housing executives are approaching the housing crisis and lack of supply as unique opportunities in today’s investment environment. Learn from institutional investors, pension funds, and private developers about their plans to support new housing supply in university environments.


MARCH 19 TRACK 2: SHURE Property & CAMPUS Technology Xchange

Thesis: Technology that touches or improves the operating environment of buildings for landlords and tenants or enhances day-to-day life at the university. Learn from smart building innovators, including heating/cooling, internet connectivity, marketing/leasing executives, transportation stakeholders, and more.  

Request Full Agenda

Please note only corporate email addresses will be accepted. We will use your email address to verify that you are a real estate and/or university professional.


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