Wanted to do this since I have recently seen a trend of more CRE posts in general, and quite a few about REPE specifically. Brief background:
-Not really sure if there's such a thing as a 'target' tranche for CRE/REPE in undergraduate schools, but I went to what would probably be grouped as a semi-target, majored in finance/econ, got a 3.6+ GPA. School didn't really have much of a RE program at the time, but did take a few classes.
-CRE hiring market was not great when I graduated, so worked in F500/corp finance for a couple of years before making the jump to CRE. Was networking literally the entire time I was at said F500 before I got a few interviews at different firms. Don't want to expand on this that much as what I was doing at the company was really specific/niche, so it would be hard not to out myself.
-Networking finally paid off and I got a gig at one of the large brokerages as sort of a hybrid generalist/econ/research analyst. Did this for a little under 1.5 years, worked my ass off and got offered to join an investment sales team at the same firm as an analyst. Worked in that capacity for two years, got promoted during that stint.
-Had a 'come-to-Jesus' meeting with the team at the end of the stint, the option was to a) stay on the team, which I considered because I genuinely liked them all and the job itself was not too shabby; or b) go to a buy-side shop. Obviously chose the latter since it was better for me personally. Interviewed a bit and ended up as an acquisitions guy at a REPE firm. Been doing this for about 1.5 years now. Ask away. This might be a pretty busy week so I apologize in advance if there's a delay in responding to anyone.