As Naples has grown the opportunities for children to obtain a college degree locally has also increased. With the renaming of what was once the Edison Junior College to Florida SouthWestern State College and the addition of 4-year courses, and a variety of degrees along with certification programs the college has established itself as a place of learning with an understanding of its vital place in our community.
Its success has been rewarded through the State Board of Education approving the performance-funding model for Florida’s 28 public state colleges with FSW being ranked seventh overall, earning the institution a “Gold Tier” rank. The metrics used to measure the colleges are Job Placement, Completion Rates, Retention Rates and Completer Entry Level Wages. FSW earned the highest points possible in Job Placement and Completer Entry-Level wages. Similar to the model established for the state university system, the college system performance funding includes money from each college’s base state budget, which is at risk if the college does not perform to established benchmarks. Earning the top-tier status means FSW will not only earn back the “at risk” portion of the budget, but also earn a proportion of new performance funds.
Part of their Strategic direction is to increase service area coverage through regional vice presidents for economic and community development in addition to assessing and responding to the regional workforce needs of Naples and surrounding communities. With the first students admitted to then Edison Junior College in the fall of 1962, the college continues to provide students with the opportunity to fulfill their professional goals. On July 1, 2014, the college was renamed Florida SouthWestern State College (FSW). The college offers Associate in Arts, Associate in Science, and Baccalaureate degrees, as well as various certificate programs. The Collier County Campus opened in March of 1992. The beautiful campus, which includes four, state-of-the-art, energy- and environmentally-efficient buildings, is located on an 80-acre site near State Road 951 and Rattlesnake Hammock Road, in south Naples within Lely Resort. For additional information please go to their website at FSW.
Source: Gulfshore Business Daily 7-15