John Sullivan: Real Estate and Public Policy

John Sullivan
Real Estate and Public Policy

B.S., Sept. 2012, cum Laude
Home College:  Queens
Faculty Mentor:  Prof. Jeff Maskovsky, Urban Studies, Queens
Thomas W. Smith Academic Fellowship
Harriet Brows Scholarship
Dean’s List

John Sullivan started out as a musician, graduating from the New England Conservatory with a Diploma in Jazz Studies in 1999, having also studied music at the University of Wisconsin, Lawrence University, and the University of Colorado.  For several years, he enjoyed a successful career as a recording and performance artist.  After moving to New York and exploring broader interests, his focus began to shift away from music as a profession and toward affordable housing development.  His area of concentration was designed to pursue that subject.

[Find out what makes CUNY BA a great degree route for performing artists at this link:]

Sullivan has worked for various affordable housing developers since 2004, learning the programs and policies that benefit vulnerable populations in need of housing.  Specifically, he worked as a property manager in housing developments serving the formerly homeless, mentally ill, individuals with HIV/AIDS and other serious health issues, and other low-income New Yorkers.  His interest in affordable and supportive housing programs grew and he decided to commit himself to this field; that is when he returned to college, finding CUNY BA the perfect route to explore these issues and also helping him prepare for a future MBA program in Real Estate.  He says, “I believe it is my obligation to understand the sociological issues that impact and are affected by housing, namely, poverty, racism and segregation, classism and capitalism, chronic physical and mental illness, and ex-offender re-integration.”

Sullivan drew his area classes from Baruch, Hunter and Queens Colleges.  He distinguished himself in all his courses, taken both on the undergraduate and graduate levels, producing high level academic work on topics from gentrification and urban revanchism to the philosophical rationales for urban justice.  His broad and ambitious course of study exploring real estate markets, urban redevelopment and public policy making have set him on the path to create more effective public and private solutions to the current housing crisis as we know it.