Career Day

Real Estate Agent with Foster Realty, Inc. RB-15721

Career Day at the local high school is always fun. It is a chance for professionals from various fields to inspire the next generation. One year in the 1990s, I was invited to speak about my entertaining real estate career at my alma mater, and I eagerly accepted. Little did I know, I'd be following a legend.


As I walked into the classroom, the energy in the air was palpable. Students were buzzing with excitement. They had been listening to presentations from doctors, engineers, and entrepreneurs. I felt confident, ready to share the ins and outs of managing a bustling real estate office.


Then I saw him—Mark Tuinei, Dallas Cowboys offensive lineman and three-time Super Bowl champion. He was there, towering over the crowd, his Super Bowl rings glinting under the fluorescent lights. Student’s eyes were wide with awe as he recounted tales from his NFL days. His presentation was dynamic, filled with stories of perseverance, teamwork, and the thrill of victory.


I was completely screwed. Suddenly, my presentation about handling tenant issues and maintaining properties seemed boring as hell. How could I possibly compete with this?


After Mark wrapped up his presentation to thunderous applause, I took a deep breath. "Good morning, everyone. I'm here to talk to you about property management." The eye rolls were painful as I explained the importance of maintaining property value and ensuring tenant satisfaction. Even I was bored.


I needed to grab their attention, so I launched into some of my wildest stories, featuring the craziest and grossest events over the years. I thought I had them hooked with tales of maggots and dead bodies—who wouldn't be intrigued by that? But nope, I had already lost them.


It was several years before I had the guts to attend Career Day again.

Kat Palmiotti
eXp Commercial, Referral Divison - Kalispell, MT
Helping your Montana dreams take root

I think it would have been just about impossible to regain the student's attention after that. You did great by taking that breath and just launching into it. Good for you!

Jun 18, 2024 04:46 AM
Sylvia "Elsie" Foster

Thanks Kat! You're right. It was completely impossible. Have a good day!

Jun 18, 2024 10:32 AM
Ed Silva, 203-206-0754
Mapleridge Realty, CT 203-206-0754 - Waterbury, CT
Central CT Real Estate Broker Serving all equally

That would have been very difficult. I don't know if I would have been able to offer anything except for telling them that that path to success that the star experienced had to have been one of hard work and determination as well as a little luck, as it is the key to anyone's achievements.

Jun 18, 2024 05:50 AM
Sylvia "Elsie" Foster
Foster Realty, Inc. - Waianae, HI

So true!! Thanks Ed. Wish I had thought of that!

Jun 18, 2024 10:31 AM
John Juarez
The Medford Real Estate Team - Fremont, CA

What an interesting experience, Sylvia!

Yet, as entertaining as a pro football champion would be in the high school classroom, it is important to remember that it is unlikely any of the members of the audience would replicate his experience.

Jun 19, 2024 05:17 PM
Sylvia "Elsie" Foster
Foster Realty, Inc. - Waianae, HI

So true, John! Highly unlikely. Thanks for reading!

Jun 19, 2024 05:30 PM
Adam Feinberg
Elegran - Manhattan, NY
NYC Condo, Co-op, and Townhouse Advisor

Well, that was surely out of your control. Planning is the sick joke vs. reality. At least you moved forward in spite of the challenges.

Jun 20, 2024 07:13 PM
Sylvia "Elsie" Foster
Foster Realty, Inc. - Waianae, HI

Aloha Adam! Sometimes I wonder who thought that was a good idea. Mark should have been last, right? Thanks for reading!

Jun 20, 2024 07:35 PM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Home Stager/Redesign

Hi Sylvie- what a cute story!!! I don't know how anyone could compete with an NFL player!!!  

Jun 21, 2024 08:21 PM
Sylvia "Elsie" Foster
Foster Realty, Inc. - Waianae, HI

Thanks Kathy! I agree. :) 

Have a wonderful weekend!

Jun 21, 2024 09:14 PM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Home Stager/Redesign

Jun 22, 2024 06:50 PM
Dorie Dillard Austin TX
Coldwell Banker Realty ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
NW Austin ~ Canyon Creek and Spicewood/Balcones

Good morning Sylvia "Elsie" Foster ,

I could feel your pain as you tried to capture the attention of the crowd! A learning experience for sure.... Who could compete with an NFL payer??? Loved your story.

Jun 23, 2024 05:40 AM
Sylvia "Elsie" Foster

Good Morning Dorie! It was a painful one for sure. Thank you for reading!

Jun 23, 2024 10:53 AM
Michael J. Perry
KW Elite - Lancaster, PA
Lancaster, PA Relo Specialist

It’s been awhile , but I was asked to share about RealEstate to Business majors at a local High School . I also taught Jr. Achievement at a Middle School for 3 years 

Jun 23, 2024 06:17 AM
Sylvia "Elsie" Foster

Hi Michael! How many of those do you think went on to have a career in real estate? I often wonder how many people actually plan on it as a career. Enjoy your day!

Jun 23, 2024 10:48 AM
Brian England
Ambrose Realty Management LLC - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

Property management would certainly be a difficult thing to promote at a career day, but it certainly can be a great career for those who have a knack for it.

Jun 23, 2024 06:24 AM
Sylvia "Elsie" Foster
Foster Realty, Inc. - Waianae, HI

Hi Brian! I often start with words from my mentor 30+ years ago. He said you have to be a little nuts to work in property management. I would completely agree. 😀 Thanks for reading!

Jun 23, 2024 10:49 AM
Nick Vandekar, 610-203-4543
Realty ONE Group Advocates 484-237-2055 - Downingtown, PA
Selling the Main Line & Chester County

That is a tough act to follow, but you never know who you might have influenced, some young man or woman who sat there knowing they were never going to be a football player but maybe this property management thing might work.

Jun 24, 2024 01:14 PM
Sylvia "Elsie" Foster
Foster Realty, Inc. - Waianae, HI

You never know. 😀 Thanks Nick! 

Jun 24, 2024 02:27 PM
Jan Green - Scottsdale, AZ
Value Added Service, 602-620-2699 - Scottsdale, AZ
HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN

Who could have followed that dynamic speaker anyway?  No one, unless you were a female actor with film cred!  I can't imagine how hard that must have been.  But you prevailed and can count that in your list of public presentations!  Good for you.  

Jun 24, 2024 03:22 PM
Sylvia "Elsie" Foster
Foster Realty, Inc. - Waianae, HI

I am a survivor baby! 🤣 Thanks for reading Jan!

Jun 24, 2024 03:49 PM
Jeff Dowler, CRS
eXp Realty of California, Inc. - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Aloha Elsie:

Wow that WAS a tough situation to be in but how could ANYONE truly compete. Bravo to you for forging ahead with your talk regardless of the odds.

Have a good weekend!


PS: I see you are a CRS - me too, in the North San Diego CA area (Carlsbad)

Jun 28, 2024 11:50 AM
Sylvia "Elsie" Foster
Foster Realty, Inc. - Waianae, HI

Aloha Jeff! Thank you and yay for the CRSs! I'll remember you are in Carlsbad. Have a great weekend!

Jun 28, 2024 06:33 PM