The Immokalee Foundation – The Education of a Lifetime

For over 30 years, The Immokalee Foundation has been 100% focused on education and professional development.

by Noemi Y. Perez,

President and CEO

As an education professional, I am the first to applaud our teachers. I also know many teachers who agree that “classroom education” is just part of the academic equation.

Education encompasses a vast audience of those who participate in—and benefit from—assistance, training, and instruction in all its various forms.

Students in The Immokalee Foundation’s Education &Human Services Pathway understand that, though teaching and public service remain the cornerstones of the industry, there are many more stories to be told—in public administration, social services, and law enforcement.

For over 30 years, The Immokalee Foundation has been 100% focused on education and professional development. This year alone, over 1,300 students, from kindergarten through postsecondary education, will benefit from our services.

Our Career Pathways Program is a comprehensive educational approach that breaks new ground in preparing students for professional careers. In addition to Education & Human Services, pathways include Business Management & Entrepreneurship, Engineering & Construction Management, and Healthcare.

Each year, Education & Human Services Pathway students are introduced to many in-demand career opportunities through professional guest speakers, hands-on activities, and field trips. Students in 11th and 12th grade interested in law enforcement can attend the Collier County Sheriff’s Office Public Safety Career Academy to become certified 9-1-1 dispatchers. Although this innovative partnership launched just last summer, I am proud to share that four of our students are currently employed as a 9-1-1 dispatcher, a position where job performance has a profound impact.

As an organization driven by education, it stands to reason we’d maintain a strong focus on preparing the educators of tomorrow, regardless of where, how, or who they choose to teach.

Our students aspire to be FBI agents, immigration lawyers, mental health counselors, art therapists, social workers, environmentalists, politicians, and teachers—everything from Pre-K to Postsecondary. More than that, they aspire to help—to make a difference in the lives of others.

Plus, these dedicated young people are led by a skilled programming team, almost 50% of whom were born and raised in Immokalee and chose to remain and serve their community. I am proud to include myself on the list of Immokalee natives.

In fact, almost every position at The Immokalee Foundation may one day be filled by a former Education & Human Pathways student. Today, our dedicated staff includes counselors, fundraising professionals and program administrators, a team defined by those who majored in social work, education, and psychology, to name just a few.

And let’s not forget that everyone can become a teacher or mentor. Each year, over 100 community volunteers step up to mentor our high school students, making a lasting impact on the futures of these amazing young people. The opportunity to educate—and be educated—can be a lifelong mission. Please, join us in preparing the next generation of career professionals.

For more information, visit or call 239-430-9122. You can also support us through our Amazon Wish List, available online at

About The Immokalee Foundation

For more than 30 years, The Immokalee Foundation has maintained a 100% focus on education and professional development for students in Immokalee—from kindergarten to postsecondary education. Through support, mentoring, tutoring, and life skills development, The Immokalee Foundation provides pathways to success for those who may not otherwise have had the opportunity to succeed.

For additional information visit

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