In Career Development

For the 2nd consecutive year, The Immokalee Foundation has received a $50,000 grant from The Women’s Foundation of Collier County in support of its Career Pathways Middle School Program, with a specific focus on its highly motivated female students.  

The Immokalee Foundation’s award-winning Career Pathways program offers a broad curriculum for Immokalee middle and high school students to place them on pathways to well-paying, in-demand careers in Southwest Florida in four employment sectors: Engineering & Construction Management, Education & Human Services, Healthcare, and Business Management & Entrepreneurship. 

Foundation students and their parents first learn about career options in middle school. Once students choose an employment sector, or “Career Pathway,” Foundation staff helps them plan their high school years to ensure they obtain the education, training, and internships necessary to prepare for postsecondary programs and career success. 

“I am personally so grateful to The Women’s Foundation of Collier County for their ongoing support of this specific group of girls,” said Noemi Y. Perez, President and CEO of The Immokalee Foundation. “As an Immokalee native, I recall how being a middle school student felt—and the fear associated with an uncertain future. These young ladies deserve the best, and through their generosity, The Women’s Foundation is helping provide each young scholar with a huge educational advantage.”

My favorite part of the middle school program is being able to explore different types of careers and activities,” said Nathalie C., middle school student with The Immokalee Foundation. I have enjoyed exploring the healthcare field where we recently learned about blood pressure readings and how to take a patient’s vitals. I hope to become a nurse so that I can take care of others.”

Established in 1996, The Women’s Foundation of Collier County is a field-of-interest fund administered by the Collier Community Foundation, whose mission is to be a catalyst for change in the lives of women and girls in Collier County through grantmaking, advocacy and education. 

“A key focus of our Women Lifting Women Campaign is to empower at-risk young women and girls through mentorships & career development programs,” said Brenda O’Connor, Women’s Foundation Board Chair. “The Immokalee Foundation Career Pathways program is a perfect fit for our mission. We are proud to help start these middle school students on the path to meet their full potential.”

About the Collier Community Foundation: The Collier Community Foundation™ is a tax-exempt, public, charitable organization established in 1985 to increase and focus on local private philanthropy. Today, the Collier Community Foundation manages more than 850 funds, works with hundreds of nonprofits, and has granted over $310 million to nonprofit organizations, community programs, and scholarships. Informed giving. Powerful results.™  Learn more at or call 239-649-5000.  

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