Campus Advantage Winter Advocate 2016

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The Campus Advantage Quarterly Newsletter – CAMPUS ADVOCATE WINTER 2016


Another year has come to a close and as we ring in our 14th year, I want to take time to reflect on the journey we’ve been on this past quarter and the plans we have for an exciting, bright future.

I first want to start by commending everyone at Campus Advantage for their dedication and focus. From the leadership team to our property managers, this year of growth would not have been possible without each and every one of them.

2016 was quite a year for Campus Advantage and this past quarter was a big contributor to that. We successfully disposed of 6,000 beds owned through a ten-year relationship with CalSTRS, and through a joint venture with Saban Real Estate, recycled that capital and acquired 19 American Campus Communities properties. Campus Advantage became one of less than a handful of privately-held companies in our industry to acquire over $1.2 billion in portfolio assets. This brings our portfolio of both owned and managed properties to approximately 30,000 beds, charting Campus Advantage among the top owner/operators in the United States and I am told, 10th largest in the world – that’s quite an accomplishment!

Over the next few months, we will continue our management takeover of 8 of the 19 properties in a series of phases. This takeover includes tier-one university student housing properties for the University of Missouri, Louisiana State University, and the University of Alabama.

We will then welcome the remaining 11 new properties to our management portfolio for the University of Michigan, the University of South Carolina, Pennsylvania State University, Indiana University, Florida State University, Western Michigan University, and East Carolina University. The addition of these communities allow us to showcase our premier operations department and introduce our award-winning Students FirstTM program to a new student base.

We have a handful of additional potential acquisitions queued up for 2017 and I am confident that we will set a new portfolio asset benchmark in the not-so-distant future.

The growth of our business allows us to continue to promote and hire motivated and talented people. Campus Advantage now has nearly 600 employees, all achieving excellence in helping create successful communities. We are adding dozens of new corporate team members, and upgrading resources and capabilities to the benefit of all portfolio assets. In our property spotlight, the Villas at Riverbend, you’ll see one of many examples of how the employees we have in place meet our standard of excellence. With its 98% pre-lease rate this fall and consistently meeting its budgeted occupancy rate each year, this team both meets and exceeds the high expectations we have as a company.

Looking ahead to 2017, I couldn’t be more energized by what’s in store. Our FOCUS Conference is just weeks away and is the perfect opportunity for us to empower and inspire our team to continue our mission of creating successful communities.

We’re also going deeper with the programming at our communities and beginning in early 2017, will begin hosting new pop-up career centers at our properties, offering residents the coaching and guidance they need to succeed outside of the classroom. This furthers our mission of serving and inspiring our residents to achieve their full potential.

By working together, keeping focused on our mission and putting our residents first, I have no doubt next year will be just as inspiring and successful as 2016. We look forward to making 2017 a top notch year for residents, staff, partners, and everyone who is part of the Campus Advantage team.

Happy New Year!

Mike Peter
President and CEO



Campus Advantage, through a joint venture with Saban Capital Group subsidiary Saban Real Estate, acquired 19 American Campus Communities properties and has become one of less than a handful of privately-held companies in its industry to acquire over $1.2 billion in portfolio assets.

“Our stated mission is to lead the world in creating financially successful communities that excel and providing a rewarding living, learning, and career experience,” Mike Peter, Campus Advantage’s president and CEO, told Multi-Housing News of the acquisition. “By expanding our platform, it certainly allows us to better deliver on that mission. It also has diversified our capital relationships, and it furthers our own goal of growing our joint venture assets, which of course for us means greater control over selections of the properties, the markets, the budgets, and the performance. So it dovetails very well with what our stated objectives are as an organization.”

Campus Advantage now has a portfolio of both owned and managed properties totaling nearly 30,000 beds, and according to Student Housing Business is now the 6th largest owner/operator in the United States.

Campus Advantage is taking over management of the Saban portfolio properties in three phases. In November, the company closed on the first phase which included eight tier-one university student housing properties for the University of Missouri, Louisiana State University, and the University of Alabama.

The company has budgeted approximately $30 million for capital improvements, including everything from property renovations to programs that will provide enhanced, supportive communities for students.

“We’re going to be taking a look at a number of things in the units like flooring and kitchens, and sort of put in a new look and feel in some of those,” Peter said. “As one would expect from a first-class operator, these were well-run, well-maintained assets. The properties will benefit from a fresh set of eyes, new programs, and upgraded amenities.”

In support of this growth Campus Advantage will be adding dozens of new corporate team members, and upgrading resources and capabilities to the benefit of all portfolio assets.

Trainings and Conferences


The 2017 FOCUS Conference is only weeks away, and both corporate and property staffs are already feeling the excitement. The eighth annual FOCUS Conference, which stands for “Fostering Our Communities Ultimate Success,” is being held January 23-26 at The Driskill Hotel in downtown Austin, TX. Here, General Managers from each Campus Advantage community will attend alongside Regional Managers, VPs, and Special Operations departments to equip, empower, and develop our team to continue to raise the bar in achieving our mission of creating successful communities.

The four-day agenda kicks off with a powerful keynote, “The Speed of Trust,” from the FranklinCovey group, followed by interactive training sessions, opportunities to learn about industry suppliers, dynamic team experiences, and lots of Mojo — our company’s value of taking your work and communities, but not yourself, seriously. In tradition, the conference will conclude with our annual CAmmy Awards, where all conference attendees and Campus Advantage corporate employees will come together to highlight the achievements and successes of properties, teams, and individuals during the previous year.

Learn more about this year’s FOCUS Conference at!



Our purpose is to serve and inspire our employees and residents to achieve their full potential. At Campus Advantage, we want our residents to understand that signing a lease at one of our properties is making an investment in their future. We create experiences and provide an atmosphere where students can make friends, build memories, and experience the most of their college years.

Beyond just providing amazing living environments and world-class customer service, we strive to go deeper. We provide referrals to campus resources, mediate roommate conflicts, arrange tutoring and study groups, and so much more. This is nothing new. Campus Advantage’s Students First™ program has been built on these principles since our founding in 2003.

So, what’s next? We pride ourselves in responding to the ever-changing needs and interests of our residents. Half of our residents tell us they want career development and success resources, so we are delivering! From offering professional headshots for LinkedIn profiles to workshops on building your online brand, we are equipping the next generation of entrepreneurs, business leaders, civil servants, doctors, lawyers, and more.

Campus Advantage is now hosting pop-up career centers at our properties, offering residents career coaching, resume critiques, career guidance, and exclusive internship opportunities from nationally recognized career experts.

Amazing facilities.
World-class service.
Career opportunities and coaching.

Why would a college student live anywhere else? Every single member of the Campus Advantage family, from our accounting team to our operations team, is making it possible for us to change lives and create futures. Thank you!



Eleven new properties have been added to the portfolio. In taking on these projects, we’re excited to introduce our award-winning Students First™ program to an expanding student base and showcase our premier operations department.


Located within walking distance to the University of Alabama, Campus Way offers students an updated community only minutes from class.

• University of Alabama
• 680 beds


Students can choose from a wide variety of cottage-style units featuring premium amenities located just down the road from campus.

• University of Missouri
• 513 beds


Lodge-style student apartments offer students a completely unique living experience in Baton Rouge.

• Louisiana State University
• 1,290 beds


Residents enjoy updated interior finishes and other apartment features in this ideally located student community.

• Louisiana State University
• 532 beds


Located next to the Grindstone Nature Area and only minutes away from campus, this community gives students the best of both worlds.

• University of Missouri
• 384 beds


The large swimming pool and popular outdoor gathering areas make this a great community for active students in Baton Rouge.

• Louisiana State University
• 609 beds


Formerly U Club Cottages, these villa-style units near the Mississippi River give students an inviting place to call home only minutes from campus.

• Louisiana State University
• 308 beds


This community offers students unique amenities like fully stocked fishing ponds and an on-site dog park, while still providing close proximity to campus.

• University of Missouri
• 355 units


Located in the heart of Huntsville, Texas, this modern student community provides state-of-the-art amenities designed with students in mind.

• Sam Houston State University
• 534 beds


This premium apartment community offers students independence, luxury, and proximity to campus.

• Texas A&M University-Corpus Christi
• 302 beds


These newly renovated student apartments are located just minutes from campus and are in the heart of all the local hotspots.

• University of Akron
• 578 beds



This cottage-style community serves students at Louisiana State University and Southern University and A&M College in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The spacious two-, three-, and four-bedroom cottages feature stained concrete flooring, high-end finishes, and additional half-baths — a resident favorite that no one else in the market offers. In addition to popular amenities, The Villas at Riverbend, formerly U Club Cottages, is located near the Mississippi River, where locals love to bike and run along the levee trail.

When residents aren’t practicing their group presentations in the media room, you can find them enjoying our many community events, such as Finals Week Breakfast Buffets or the annual Crawfish Run, where nearly 1,000 students will be covered in a rainbow of dust.

The Villas at Riverbend is one of the few properties in the market to meet budgeted occupancy year after year, even reaching a 98% pre-lease this past fall. The staff is thrilled to have begun a complete rebrand of the community, including a new name, logo, and brand guide.



David Pierce, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP, joins our team as Executive Vice President of Development. David has over 27 years of real estate experience, of which, the first 14 he successfully served as an architect. David joins us from University House Communities (UHC), where he most recently served as Executive Vice President of Development and delivered approximately 10,000 beds of Class A student housing, including almost 2,000 beds of urban infill high-rise product. At CA, he will lead our development team and be responsible for implementing the long-term strategic direction of our developments. David earned a bachelor’s degree in architecture from Texas Tech and a master’s degree in architecture from Syracuse University. David will be serving on the Texas Tech College of Architecture Advisory Board beginning in 2017 through 2020.


Kristen Penrod joins our team as Vice President of Development. Kristen has over 10 years of real estate experience and most recently served as Vice President of Development at UHC. While at UHC, Kristen oversaw a majority of its student housing developments from site selection, underwriting, design, and construction. At CA, she will focus on building our development pipeline and managing the process for student housing development projects from site selection through construction completion. Kristen earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Texas at Austin and is a member of the U.S. Green Building Council.


Pam West joins our team as Vice President of Operations. She began her career in student housing with The Dinerstein Companies, where she worked for over 15 years. Pam joins us from Peak Campus, where she served as Regional Manager for many years. At CA, she will oversee our third-party management portfolio. Pam earned a degree from Texas State Technical College in Waco, Texas.


Chris Semper joins our team as Director of Investments. Chris joins us from Austin-based private equity firm Virtus Real Estate Capital, where he managed roughly 20 student housing/multifamily investments. Chris earned a bachelor’s degree in business honors/finance from the University of Texas at Austin.



Scott Sedgwick


Jon Anderson
Kory Scott Goedert
Katelyn Marie Bishop
Kyle Beam
Myrna Flores
Hannah Folk
Danny Rigsby
Osmar Santos
Joshua Jennings
Harry Babcock
Daniel Siminski


Our Team IS the Campus Advantage.

Providing Exceptional Job Opportunities in the Student Housing Industry

The purpose of Campus Advantage is to serve and inspire our employees and residents to achieve their full potential. We focus on developing successful people, who help us create successful communities.