Build Your Future: The Michigan Realtors® Scholarship Trust

Michigan Realtors® is proud to offer scholarship opportunities for those interested in pursuing a career as a real estate professional. Attracting and retaining future members is one of our top priorities. The Michigan Realtors® Scholarship Trust provides scholarships to full-time, college students majoring in finance, marketing, business, law, or other such fields of study applicable to a career in real estate.

If you are a college student seeking a career in the real estate field, you may be eligible to receive up to $3,000 in awards. The application deadline is July 31 for the following academic school year. 

Applications now closed for 2020-2021 cycle.


Scholarship Questions:

Michelle Williston



Eligibility Requirements

  • Awards range from $500 to $3,000 and are distributed over two semesters.
  • Must complete and submit applications by July 31st for the following academic year.
  • Must be a resident of Michigan and a full-time student entering your junior or senior year at an accredited university or college; post-graduate applicants are also considered.
  • Must have at least an average grade point of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale or equivalent of a "C" average.
  • Must be taking courses which are related to the real estate field, such as real estate, business, marketing, finance or law.
  • Must provide a copy of current college transcript
  • Must provide a cover letter, resume and personal or professional reference letter
  • Must exemplify character including demonstrated evidence of good citizenship.
  • Must participate in an interview with a REALTOR® to discuss future aspiration and individual interest in the real estate industry. 
    To Find a Realtor® in your area – click here 
    Interview template – PDF link for interview examples


What Past Recipients Are Saying

MARST has helped me reach my academic goals by allowing me to attend Michigan State University. I was able to take the classes I needed in order to be successful. I am currently working for the Healthy Homes Coalition of West Michigan, where I work on strategic communications. Our mission is to improve children’s health and wellbeing by eliminating harmful housing conditions. MARST has helped me get where I am today and I am proud of where I am today.
- Abby Rogalke, 2015-2016 recipient

The scholarship allowed me to complete my degree quickly while maintaining a full-time job. No one can take your education away from you. This led me to a very fulfilling career in the real estate industry serving as the Communications & Marketing Director for the Michigan Realtors® since 2008.
- Joe Kras, 2007-2008 recipient



2019/2020 Recipients

Justine Burt
Ms. Justine Burt is a rising Junior at The University of Michigan and is pursuing her Bachelors of Business Administration with a focus in Real Estate and a minor in Entrepreneurship. She is a licensed REALTOR®, working part-time in sales at Lakes Reality and works in the marketing and sales division at Better Built Homes. Outside of work, Justine is active in the Barger Leadership Institute, her sorority Gamma Phi Beta and participates in Ann Arbor Roller Derby.

Press Release

Mac Carron
Mr. Macklin Carron is a junior honors student at Michigan State University, expecting to graduate with a degree in finance in 2021. Mac actively participates in many extracurricular academic clubs such as the Finance Association and the Student Investment Association. He is also a member of Michigan State University's Financial Markets Institute. He has worked at MHT Housing Inc., an affordable housing developer, for the past two years. These experiences sparked Mac's interest in real estate development and management. After graduation he plans to continue his efforts in the industry.

Press Release

Christian Fairbanks
Mr. Christian Fairbanks is a second-year law student on the Dean's List at Western Michigan University Cooley Law School. Prior to this, he studied finance and real estate in the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University. His passion for real estate began with his father, John, a commercial real estate broker and developer out of Indianapolis. Christian is currently directing his study of law toward real estate contract negotiation and litigation. Christian works with the Michigan Realtors® as their Public Policy Intern.

Press Release

Jack Vaglia
Mr. Jack Vaglia is a senior at Michigan State University, expecting to graduate with a degree in Finance from the Eli Broad College of Business. He is a member of the Honors College, where he has made Dean’s List all semesters. He is actively involved in various organizations on campus such as the Financial Markets Institute, the Student Investment Fund, and the Alternative Investments Group. He was introduced to the world of real estate through interning at ValStone Partners on their Acquisitions and Investments team. He has followed up this internship with another excellent experience interning in the Capital Markets division of Wells Fargo Securities. After graduation, he is looking to join a real estate investment firm in an Acquisitions and Investments role.

Press Release

Group Press Release

2018/2019 Recipients

Brendan O'Brien 
Hometown: Kalamazoo
Attended: Michigan State University

Michael Kelley 
Hometown: Kalamazoo
Attended: Michigan State University

Maggie Benjamin 
Hometown: Kalamazoo
Attended: Saint Mary’s College/Notre Dame

Carl Rasmussen 
Hometown: Traverse City
Attended: Michigan State University

2017/2018 Recipients

Dylan Bennett 
Hometown: Huntington Woods
Attended: The University of Michigan

McKenzie Mathewson 
Hometown: Lewiston
Attended: Northern Michigan University

Brendan O’Brien 
Hometown: Kalamazoo
Attended: Michigan State University

Daniel O’Brien 
Hometown: Kalamazoo
Attended: Michigan State University

Jacob VanCuren 
Hometown: Rockford
Attended: Grand Valley State University

Make a Donation

The scholarship program continues to grow. Many local associations and individuals have made a commitment. Trustees hope that they can help even more people reach their goals of becoming Realtors® next year. Call 517.372.8890, to make a tax-deductible donation. You can also make a donation in the memory of a family member or friend.


Trustees oversee and administer two funds: the Russel A. Pointer Fund and the Barney Harkins Scholarship & Educational Fund.

Russel A. Pointer (1897-1971) served the real estate profession for more than forty years. He was an adviser and counselor to both Michigan Realtors® and the National Association of Realtors® real estate education programs. Pointer served as past president of Michigan Realtors® (1950) and the Saginaw Board of Realtors® (1951). He also served as a NAR director and as executive director of the Real Estate Extension Program at the University of Michigan.

The Barney Harkins Fund was established in 1976 through the generosity of Barney Harkins (1893-1986), an active real estate professional in Washtenaw County from 1915 to 1975. He was instrumental in founding the Ann Arbor Area Board of Realtors® in 1919, served as president five times, served as president of Michigan Realtors® and was one of the first Realtors® to be named “Realtor® Emeritus” by the National Association of Realtors®.


The Real Estate Alumni of Michigan (RAM) Scholarship Fund, founded in 1953, developed a scholarship program in 1955 to promote professionalism in the real estate industry. RAM recognizes extensive participation in real estate education courses offered through the MAR and NAR, institutes, societies and councils, colleges and universities.