The Immokalee Foundation Students are a Vital Part of Southwest Florida’s Business Future

Immokalee Foundation’s Students onsite at their internship at Legal Aid

NOEMI Y. PEREZ, President & CEO, The Immokalee Foundation

Southwest Florida business leaders take note: MORE Immokalee Foundation students and alumni are on the way.

Since opening our doors in 1991, The Immokalee Foundation has empowered over 15,000 of Immokalee’s best and brightest—from kindergarten through postsecondary education.

Southwest Florida’s business community is a passionate ally that not only places a premium on community support, but also recognizes the value of our time-honored focus on education, career readiness, and professional development.

The bottom line: The Immokalee Foundation is preparing Southwest Florida’s workforce of the future. At the center of this transformation is our award-winning Career Pathways program, which provides students with new pathways to success and financial independence—preparing motivated young people for well-paying, in-demand careers in four specific pathways: Business Management& Entrepreneurship, Education & Human Services, Engineering& Construction Management, and Healthcare.

Every time an organization champions one of our activities or events, a community of like-minded benefactors takes note. As a variety of volunteer and sponsorship options exist, we work with local business leaders to determine the best fit for their mission and goals for community engagement.

Here are some great examples of community business collaborations that have helped support our students’ pathways to success: Physicians Regional Healthcare System stepped up for the second consecutive year to provide funding and hands on experiential learning opportunities for students following The Immokalee Foundation’s Healthcare Pathway.

Once again, Physicians Regional has underwritten 100% of the costs for the Foundation’s Healthcare Summer Camp at Florida Gulf Coast University. Beneficiaries included 36 Foundation students, ages 14-17, interested in pursuing careers in medicine, nursing, and related fields.

The healthcare system also hosted 17 interns at its Pine Ridge and Collier Boulevard hospitals. Students had the extraordinary opportunity to shadow healthcare professionals in various specialties while participating in medical-office-support activities.

Plus, in support of the Foundation’s robust mentor program, three Physicians Regional staff members will serve as mentors to three Healthcare Pathway students this year.

“As the go-to healthcare provider for a significant percentage of Southwest Florida, we have a responsibility to invest in our community’s future. There’s nothing more important than investing in the next generation of healthcare leaders—such as the talented young people of The Immokalee Foundation,” said Scott Lowe, Market CEO for Physicians Regional Healthcare System.  “It’s a privilege to support the Foundation’s educational summer camps, participate in their life-changing mentor program, and host dedicated Foundation interns. I sincerely hope others will read about our passionate support for these driven, deserving young people and follow in our footsteps. It is true: the future is now.”

Hertz Corporation has found almost as many different ways to support our students as there are car makes and models in their inventory. In addition to donating dozens of laptops for our homebound students during the pandemic, Hertz has gone on to host field trips and career panel presentations and has generously sponsored our signature events.

Arthrex has been so diverse in its giving strategy that, in addition to hosting interns and special events, it once sent a team of volunteer staffers to get down and dirty, re-landscaping our Programs Office in Immokalee.

Responsive Insurance actively recruits Immokalee Foundationalumni, and Lee County standout Scotlynn has developed a reputation for being everywhere we need them to be.

Every gift, mentor, internship, inspiring speaker, and eye opening field trip dramatically impacts our student experience just as it changes the trajectory of our community’s economic future.

To every organization that has ever graciously supported our students, our gratitude is endless.

About The Immokalee Foundation For more than 31 years, The Immokalee Foundation has been preparing the next generation of leaders through a 100% focus on education and professional development for students in Immokalee—from kindergarten through postsecondary education. The Foundation provides new pathways to success and financial independence through robust programming that prepares students for well-paying, in-demand professional careers. To learn more about The Immokalee Foundation, become a mentor, volunteer as a career panel speaker or host, donate, or include the Foundation in your estate plans, please call 239-430-9122 or visit

0 replies

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.