Connecting workers with support and training for better careers while meeting the workforce needs of employers
Florida Gulf Coast University, together with FutureMakers Coalition at Collaboratory and other partners, developed the Southwest Florida Equitable Jobs Pipeline to upskill the regional workforce and stimulate economic development, which will continue to build and expand a strong economic future for Florida.
Made possible by nearly $23 million in federal funding – the largest grant in FGCU history – the Equitable Jobs Pipeline will connect underemployed and unemployed Southwest Florida residents with training for industry-recognized credentials and, ultimately, careers with local employers committed to this partnership. More than 1,700 local job seekers, including those from underserved populations, who face barriers to education, employment and career advancement will be fast-tracked for professional advancement.
This regional collaboration is developing a long-term solution to reduce those barriers. Because talent lives here – but needs a path to opportunity.
The first four target industries for the Equitable Jobs Pipeline are:
- Health care
- K-12 public education
System Development (now through May 2023) includes:
- Formalizing partnership agreements and commitments to hire
- Refining analysis of regional skills gap to determine which existing or new credential programs will prepare job seekers for unfilled jobs
- Recruiting job seekers through employers, training partners, nonprofits and local government
Program Design (June 2023-February 2024) includes:
- Finalizing credential programs targeted to employer-identified jobs and contracts with education partners
- Coordinating wraparound services for job seekers, such as language assistance, transportation and child care
- Developing a sustainability plan based on metrics
Program Implementation (March 2024-August 2025) includes:
- Using data to make program revisions and plan sustainability
- Scaling up credential programs in each industry sector, as employer needs dictate
- Engaging mid-size and small businesses to determine need for additional targeted training and credentials
- Continuing to support trainees along a career pathway after they are hired
Read and explore stories in the news featuring the Southwest Florida Equitable Jobs Pipeline initiative.
The institute studies the regional and state economy and conducts on-demand economic research of issues pertaining to Southwest Florida. Research includes areas such as economic development and forecasting, economic impact analysis and surveys. Learn about RERI >
This investment in our regional workforce will change many lives for generations to come.
In support of the Southwest Florida Equitable Jobs Pipeline, various resources and data-tracking elements are available now and will grow as the program expands.
1,700+Individuals targeted for new or better-paying jobs
$22.9MGood Jobs Challenge grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration
5Counties targeted (Lee, Collier, Hendry, Glades, Charlotte)